Your First Patient

We know from Mary Roach’s oddly cheerful book, Stiff, that human cadavers play an unseen but important role in everything from bullet testing to automobile safety. Of course, cadavers are also central to medical education. Learning anatomy by dissecting an anonymous body is a rite of passage for future doctors.

It’s also an expensive ritual. As medical imaging technology improves, some medical schools are seeking to replace live dissection with computer simulation. One school in Indiana is going in the opposite direction. They are integrating dissection into the entire curriculum by making the cadaver a doctor’s first patient.

As reported in the Chronicle of Higher Education, students at Indiana University Northwest meet relatives of the deceased to gain a fuller picture of how the person lived, not just how she died. The students learn a more holistic approach to medicine, applying the lessons of their histology class to the tissues they examined.

For their part, the family members gain insight into their family’s health history. The husband of one donor plans to attend the graduation of the students who dissected his wife. This approach models not only good pedagogy, but also good clinical practice.

Tags: ,

18 Responses to “Your First Patient”

  1. Christopher Shanahan, MD says:

    I agree with the IUN appraoch. I continue to carry the memory of my cadaver (we named him Woody) still to this day. I regret that I never knew anything more about him than what I could see as my anatomy partners and I took him apart. It would have been incredibly valuable to have understood him more as a person, how he lived his life, and to have know a bit about the forces that he eventually succumed to. No doubt the gravity of his sacrafice would have all the more real and valuable to me as a young physisian.

  2. pcahn says:

    At a minimum, medical students can learn the true name of the person whose body they are learning from. Some schools even have ceremonies to thank the donors for their sacrifice once the dissection is over.

  3. *very good post, i certainly adore this fabulous website, persist in it

  4. *you possess a excellent weblog here! do you wish to make some invite posts on my small weblog?

  5. Thank you for the article. It is useful to me. After I read the article and been touched by this article I have always been to write. I will follow every article I read and then feel the wealth of knowledge Thank Finally I would like to leave my site. Available for any interested to visit. Musicians may be particularly like at all.Guitar Sale Cheap

  6. Thanks a good deal just for all!

  7. I disagree, that should never be a factor in your decision

  8. You can certainly see your enthusiasm within the work you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who are not afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart. Prime Escorts, 350 Kennington Lane, London SE11 5HY, 028 8788 0034

  9. Magnificent goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just extremely magnificent. I actually like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you’re stating and the way in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still take care of to keep it sensible. I cant wait to read far more from you. This is really a terrific site.

  10. Espresso says:

    Howdy, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam feedback? If so how do you prevent it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any support is very much appreciated.

  11. Coffee says:

    Have you ever considered about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is fundamental and all. But imagine if you added some great visuals or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and clips, this blog could certainly be one of the very best in its niche. Amazing blog!

  12. My husband and i were really lucky when Chris could round up his reports with the ideas he gained from your own web page. It is now and again perplexing to simply always be offering hints that a number of people might have been trying to sell. We really do know we have the writer to give thanks to for that. The main illustrations you made, the simple blog navigation, the relationships you make it possible to instill – it is mostly astounding, and it is aiding our son and us feel that the content is fun, which is certainly exceedingly fundamental. Many thanks for the whole thing!

  13. Hey there, You have done an excellent job. I will certainly digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I am sure they will be benefited from this web site.

  14. An outstanding share, I just provided this on to a associate who had been doing a minor examination on this. And he in truth purchased me lunch because I discovered it for him. So allow me reword that: Many thanks for the treat!

  15. fiverr says:

    This is this remarkable useful resource that you’re promoting and also you have out and about for free. I like seeing internet sites which see the price of producing a quality useful resource for free. Great job!

  16. Fannie Ecton says:

    I’m not sure where you’re getting your info, but good topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for excellent information I was looking for this information for my mission.

  17. I would like to thank you for the efforts you might have made in writing this post. I am hoping the exact same greatest work from you in the future at the same time. In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to start my own BlogEngine weblog now

  18. I think other site proprietors should take this web site as an model, very clean and magnificent user friendly style and design, let alone the content. You’re an expert in this topic!