The impact of the notion of “depth” in the education of anatomy: a case report

  • Lucas Telles Machado Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Guilherme Bustamante de Magalhães Araujo Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Emanuel Rodrigues Germano Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Vinicius Amancio Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Fernando Eduardo Zikan Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
Keywords: Depth Notion; Anotomy Study.


INTRODUCTION: Cadaveric dissection (CD) is an important tool for studying anatomy and contributes to general knowledge. Anatomy teachers note that CD can be used as an essential tool to reinforce the information obtained in the theoretical classroom, enabling students to have a broader and more critical look at the study of the human body. OBJECTIVE: To report and discuss the impact of the depth variable on the learning obtained during the practice of CD in presencial lessons. METHOD: The present study is a case report based on the experience of the group of four students of the Physiotherapy course at UFRJ, describing their impressions between basics and clinical education. It is a qualitative methodology, with discourse analysis, carried out between February and December 2019, when there was a deepening of teaching concepts and sensory experience among students and their cadaverous pieces. At group meetings, themes were reported that go beyond the theoretical and mechanical issues of anatomy teaching activities, such as sensitization, spatial notion, human relationships, sense of life and death and "depth". This depth was reported based on the characteristics of both physical, three-dimensional body and relation of body tissues, being related to the inclusion of humanistic and emotional themes. RESULTS: Going deeper into the three-dimensional concept of the body and its tissues, addressing the benefits of problem-based learning, including the humanistic aspects, allow a proximity of teaching with CD to clinical practice. This deepening was evident in the reports, where frequent terms of valorization of anatomy teaching, interaction between basic-clinic and interpersonal and human variables during teaching. The reports also pointed to topics such as the use of advanced learning tools, which simulate and allow advances in teaching but cannot replace CD. The learning that this experience with CD allows, establishes the interaction between the objective knowledge of the body tissues and their depths, with the complexity of the clinical study in health. CONCLUSION: Professors and health professionals agree that the practice of CD goes beyond theoretical knowledge, addressing humanistic and ethical concepts about life and death, care and sensitivity. Our report, from the speech of these students, points to the path of teaching with an indispensable CD, positively influencing the professional and personal development of the student. The pandemic brought a reflection on the importance of face-to-face teaching of anatomy, since remote teaching results in impaired learning, reflecting on post-pandemic practices.

How to Cite
Machado, L., Araujo, G., Germano, E., Amancio, V., & Zikan, F. E. (2021). The impact of the notion of “depth” in the education of anatomy: a case report. Acta Scientiae Anatomica, 1(Suppl 2), 101-102. Retrieved from