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Medical schools in the United States continue to undergo curricular change, reorganization, and reformation as more schools transition to an integrated curriculum. Anatomy educators must find novel approaches to teach in a way that will bridge multiple disciplines. The cadaveric extraction of the central nervous system (CNS) provides an opportunity to bridge gross anatomy, neuroanatomy, and clinical neurology. In this dissection, the brain, brainstem, spinal cord, cauda equina, optic nerve/tract, and eyes are removed in one piece so that the entire CNS and its gateway to the periphery through the spinal roots can be appreciated. However, this dissection is rarely, if ever, performed likely due to time constraints, perceived difficulty, and lack of instructions. The goals of this project were (i) to provide a comprehensive, step-by-step guide for an en bloc CNS extraction and (ii) to determine effective strategies to implement this dissection/prosection within modern curricula. Optimal dissection methods were determined after comparison of various approaches/tools, which reduced dissection time from approximately 10 to 4 hours. The CNS prosections were piloted in small group sessions with two types of learners in two different settings: graduate students studied wet CNS prosections within the dissection laboratory and medical students used plastinated CNS prosections to review clinical neuroanatomy and solve lesion localization cases during their neurology clerkship. In both cases, the CNS was highly rated as a teaching tool and 98% recommended it for future students. Notably, 90% of medical students surveyed suggested that the CNS prosection be introduced prior to clinical rotations. Anat Sci Educ. © 2017 American Association of Anatomists.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Anatomical sciences education
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The enteric, parasympathetic, and sympathetic nervous systems taken together. Generally speaking, the autonomic nervous system regulates the internal environment during both peaceful activity and physical or emotional stress. Autonomic activity is controlled and integrated by the central nervous system, especially the hypothalamus and the solitary nucleus, which receive information relayed from VISCERAL AFFERENTS; these and related central and sensory structures are sometimes (but not here) considered to be part of the autonomic nervous system itself.
The stealing of corpses after burial, especially for medical dissection. In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, in the absence of laws governing the acquisition of dissecting material for the study of anatomy, the needs of anatomy classes were met by surreptitious methods: body-snatching and grave robbing. The infamous practice of "burking", murder to procure bodies for dissection, was given the name of a rascal named W. Burke, hanged in Edinburgh in 1829. (Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed; from Garrison, An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th ed, p447; from Castiglioni, A History of Medicine, 2d ed, p676)
Characteristic properties and processes of the NERVOUS SYSTEM as a whole or with reference to the peripheral or the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.
Inherited conditions characterized by a loss of myelin in the central nervous system.
An increased response to stimulation that is mediated by amplification of signaling in the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM (CNS).
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