Monday, January 31, 2011

Whatchu talkin' about [Circle of] Willis?!

"Note: do NOT decapitate the cadaver" - Anatomy dissector guide.

Easier said than done, actually, when you consider that the last several weeks have involved sawing through the skull to peel out the brain, disarticulating the skull from the spinal cord to expose the back of the larynx, removing the skin to visualize the muscles of facial expression, sawing again to bisect the face, and removing an eye from its socket.

This of course is in addition to previously removing all the organs, sawing the thorax apart from the lower body, bisecting the pelvis, and more recently, slicing the brain into tiny pieces.

Barbaric? A bit. Tiring, frustrating, tedious and serial killer-esque? At times. But our now completed gross anatomy course was also a pretty phenomenal experience - humbling, challenging, rewarding and (literally) eye-opening.

I can't say that I'll miss the smell of formaldehyde, but I remain incredibly grateful to the women and men who donated their bodies to further our education.

To them and their families: Thank You.

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