How Cadavers Are Used to Advance Science and Learning: A Closer Look from a Funeral Planner in Lake City, FL

September 20, 2017 11:43 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Most people are resistant to thinking about death, which makes it understandable that the importance of cadavers in medical and scientific research so often goes undiscussed. These days, the need for cadaver donation is higher than it’s ever been, while the number of donations is simply not keeping up with the need.

You don’t have to be a funeral planner in Lake City, FL to understand why cadavers are so important to advancing science. Here are just a few reasons why.

Teaching future doctors and surgeons

Learning anatomy by dissecting a human cadaver is crucial to any doctor’s study. Every human body is both quite similar and quite different, so using actual cadavers rather than relying on diagrams, slides or some technical solution allows new doctors to experience firsthand the uniqueness that exists from person to person. This will help them tremendously when they get out into the field.
Not only do cadavers help doctors learn human anatomy and body systems, but they are also ideal for practicing medical procedures. Common medical procedures like appendectomies or gallbladder removals have to be practiced by students, because they’re so common in the real world.
The variety of cadavers means doctors get to see a variety of causes of death, so they can get a better understanding of the effect of diseases on body systems, and the stages those diseases go through as they progress to the terminal stage. Overall, cadavers are seen as such an important part of medical learning that, at many medical schools, it’s common to hold a ceremony at the end of each school year for the donated cadavers, so that the students and teachers may solemnly thank the individuals for their contributions.

Disease research

For every currently uncured disease, studying cadavers with the disease is a crucial way of understanding and dealing with the symptoms of the disease, and tracing the body systems that can fight it or that are affected or infiltrated by it. All of this helps researchers build new strategies for combatting the disease until it’s finally beaten. Cadavers are especially important in understanding neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, as they are very common diseases that are still mysterious in many ways. Brain donation and cadaver donation are crucial to understanding how these diseases work.

Forensic research

Cadavers can also be donated for forensic research. Here in Florida, and in a few other states in the country, we have locations where forensic researchers study the decomposition of bodies in different scenarios. The data they collect from this research helps them gain insights into currently open or cold murder cases. The research done here in Florida has proven especially useful. Florida, as you know, is a humid, wet place, where no part of the state is any further than 100 miles from the ocean at any given time—and this creates a very unique scenario for body decomposition. Research conducted here has vastly increased law enforcement’s understanding of crime scenes in Florida, and has helped bring murderers to justice.

As a funeral planner in Lake City, FL, ICS Cremation & Funeral Home understands how difficult it can be to discuss any matters having to do with death, but we hope that you’ll take a few moments today to think about all the brave souls who have donated their bodies to science, and who have, in their own ways, helped make the world a better, safer and healthier place to live.

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