Exploration of the Anatomy of a Fetal Pig and Its Organs Through Dissection Written by Jason Camacho
Many scientists are experts when it comes to the placement of the organs in the human and animal body. Scientists can point anywhere and name the organ closest to it, but how do the scientists know exactly where each organ is? How do the scientists know the number of organs that are in your body? How do they know all this? Well, scientists know all about the anatomy of humans and animals because of a procedure called dissection. Dissection is when people cut open and analyze the structures and relations inside. In this situation a fetal pig was cut open and analyzed1.
Dissection has been around as early as the third century B.C. The dissections were being carried out by the Greek physicians Herophilus of Chalcedon and Erasistratus of Chios. During these times, it was against Roman law to dissect a human a body, so many physicians, including Galen, were forced to work with only animals. Because of this, many physicians dissected various types of animals, assuming they had the same anatomy as the human. Eventually, the laws changed and human dissection was now legal. With human dissection being legal, many physicians performed human dissections and discovered many new things about the human anatomy1.
A man called Andreas Vesalius was an important figure in the history of dissection. This man is known as the founder of the human anatomy. Vesalius was born on December 31, 1554 in Brussels, Belgium and died on October 15, 1564 in Zakynthos, Venetian Ionian Islands, Greece. Vesalius was a physician who changed biology and practice of medicine by clearly and carefully describing the human anatomy. He wrote his own anatomy textbook using his own observations he took when dissecting humans. Vesalius was from a family of physicians and pharmacists. He decided to follow the family tradition and went to medical school. In 1537, he got his M.D. degree and became a lecturer in surgery. He was responsible to giving anatomical demonstrations. For the first few years he followed Galen’s methods and theories, but eventually he decided to use his own method. By using his own method, he discovered that Galenic anatomy had not been based off the dissection of the human body. Gale came up with the human anatomy by conclusions based from dissections made on varies types of animals. Vesalius also accurately described the muscles in the human body. He described where the muscles were located and what their job was. Vesalius was a man who discovered so much about human anatomy that he became a figure in the history of dissection2.
Materials and Methods
One fetal pig One waxed aluminum container Two pieces of string One scalpel One pair of scissors One straight probe...
References: 1. Science Museum Brought to Life, http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/broughttolife/techniques/dissection.aspx
2. Encyclopedia Britannica, http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/626818/Andreas-Vesalius
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