As Colleges Adopt Online Anatomy Learning Tools, Cadavers Go Digital

As advances in technology change how human anatomy can be viewed and learned, more colleges and universities are closing the cadaver lab and adopting virtual anatomy tools. Boise State University recently replaced its traditional human cadaver lab — in use for anatomy students since the early 1980s — with Primal Pictures’ Anatomy.TV, an interactive, web-based anatomy & physiology learning tool.

“Many schools using Anatomy.TV in place of the cadaver lab say it is better for the students and the faculty,” said Neal Alen, Vice President of Sales, Primal Pictures. “Students appreciate that they can access the online anatomy to study anytime they want, even if the lab is closed. Faculty appreciate that the program tracks student time spent studying online. They have also see Anatomy.TV’s vivid coloration as an advantage, noting that the dry preservation of cadavers often makes it difficult for new anatomy students to differentiate muscles, nerves and tendons.”

Using Anatomy.TV, students get a comprehensive and deep view of joints, ligaments and nerves. Anatomy.TV gives students clear, detailed and accurate 3D real-time modeling of all sections of the human anatomy. Users can create custom views to save as bookmarks or label, annotate and export. The images are created from real medical scan data and include over 7500 structures. Users can rotate the 3D models in any direction using a mouse, and control which structures are visible, added, removed, made x-ray or opaque either in groups – muscles, vessel systems and organ systems – or individually, structure by structure. All views can be peeled away, rotated and labelled. The product also includes narrated animations of physiology, learning objectives, self-testing, and pronunciation guides.

The web-based system allows students to log in anytime from anywhere, and tracks the number of hours students spend with the program. Instructors can review data on student usage and study time and can adjust or modify the class time lectures and discussions accordingly.

Established in 1991, Primal Pictures achieved its mission of creating the only complete and medically accurate 3D model of the human anatomy in 2003. Primal Pictures offers the most complete, detailed and medically-accurate 3D model of human anatomy for students, educators and health care practitioners. Primal Pictures’ 3D anatomy software is widely adopted in education and it is used for patient, practitioner and student education in over 20 countries. In 2012, over half a million students will learn anatomy using Primal software. Anatomy & Physiology Online recently won the British Medical Association’s annual prize for the best digital resource.