• Question: have you evrer disecteed a dead human

    Asked by wolverine to Lindsay on 12 May 2015.
    • Photo: K. Lindsay Hunter

      K. Lindsay Hunter answered on 12 May 2015:

      Yup! Live humans are a lot harder to dissect. 😉

      I’ve actually dissected a lot of dead people, and I have to say that it is an AMAZING gift to give your body to science. A lot of the people that we saw in our Gross Human Anatomy lab were grandparents, whose organs often wouldn’t be as useful for transplant (although, you CAN still donate some organs and opt for non-whole body donation).

      I worked as an anatomy demonstrator/prosector (someone who dissects bodies for demonstration purposes) and helped first year medical students to identify structures. It’s crazy-important for young doctors to learn how the body works and what it looks like inside, especially for those that are going into surgery.

      I’m actually really good at very detailed dissections, like nerves, which can be almost like sticky cobwebs. I had to get very good at not damaging things because I was inserting colored latex into veins and arteries and if you nick them, the latex shoots out everywhere! That’s one reason that I don’t use a scalpel a lot, because you can do a much nicer job with blunt dissection. Blunt dissection is essentially using your fingers to tease things apart or using my favorite technique, “reverse scissoring.” In reverse scissoring, you insert the closed tip of the scissors into an area and then gently open them instead of cutting. It’s GREAT for making pretty dissections!

      You might also like this other answer:

      What do you do in labs?