Lessons from a Cadaver Dissection

Y’all Wanna See a Dead Body? I remember my first cadaver dissection way back in undergrad. My first time seeing what the body “actually” looked like, not a two-dimensional representation. Exploring the human body via dissection left an indelible mark on my anatomical understanding. There is something incredibly salient about holding a human heart that the donors so graciously provided. It took my understanding to another level. I had a few other times in undergrad and PT school where I was able to study cadavers, but that was 8 years ago. My lens has changed. My biases have been altered. My appreciation for the human body and relationships is different. In PT school, dissection time is basically 75% fat removal, 20% separating structures, and 5% appreciating. Especially considering the primary objective is rote anatomical memorization for the test, you don’t get to take time and stop and smell the formaldehyde. You do what you gotta do to get that degree, fam. This dissection I got to participate in was hosted by University of St. Augustine. Without the pressures of PT school and better anatomical knowledge, the experience was worthwhile. A breath of fresh…well you know what I mean. It didn’t hurt that anatomical genius Daddy-O Pops Bill Hartman was in the heezy. We had pretty much free reign on these cadavers, which allowed see so many cool things, reinforce many ideas, and develop greater understanding of how to apply anatomy to our advantage. Realize that this post is horrendously biased.

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