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Anat Rec B New Anat. 2004 Mar;277(1):10-3.

Loved one's body in the anatomy laboratory.

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School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of New South Wales, New South Wales, Australia.


An Australian medical student recognized parts of her father's body during classes in an anatomy laboratory and suffered considerable trauma as a consequence. While the risk of a further case may be small, the potential for trauma could be minimized by adopting appropriate policy and procedures. Institutions that receive donations of bodies may benefit from considering suggestions for minimizing that risk and for responding appropriately should it ever occur. The article draws on the investigation into this case to offer some suggestions for minimizing the chance of recognition of bodies or body parts by students and academic or professional staff and for managing those circumstances should they ever occur. The suggestions extend to minimizing the risk of recognition of deceased persons or their body parts through photographic records, video material, and case studies presented in a number of different formats.

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