Perception and emotional impact of dissection on medical students ({LB}13)

Hussein, Inaya Hajj, Mark Hankin, Mohammed Dany, Jason Wasserman, and Abdo Jurjus. "Perception and emotional impact of dissection on medical students ({LB}13)." The FASEB Journal. 28 (2014): LB13.


Dissection contributes significantly to anatomical knowledge and the development of professionalism for medical students. This study assessed student emotional stress and coping in the anatomy lab and the perception of dissection on learning. A survey of Medicine I students (n=100) assessed: demographics, emotions and stress of the first dissection, anxiety, coping, and learning. With a response rate of 40%, our findings include: positive attitude towards the first dissection (n=33) although some students still found it stressful (n=17); cultural views impacted the lab experience (n=24); some used spirituality (n=10) or humor (n=6) to cope; most agreed that dissection enhanced understanding of anatomy (n=31) and the connection of between theoretical and applied knowledge (n=37); promoted teamwork (n=35); and highlighted respect for the human body (n=31) and the spirit of organ donation (n=28). While some have assumed that students have a negative attitude towards human dissection, our study showed that the majority of students reported a positive impact on various aspects of professionalism and humanism. We conclude that dissection is useful for students to establish not only technical skills and knowledge of the body, but also qualities associated with inter-professional teamwork and a humanistic attitude, without posing significant emotional stress.




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