Reference models of the abdominal viscera
The Anatomical Record
It is a common experience that students are frequently handicapped in the study of visceral anatomy by imperfections in the material allotted t o them. The occurrence of better viscera on neighboring tables, although contributing alternative objects for study, is often a source of further discouragement. Quite apart from the numerous cases in which the lungs are more or less disorganized by chronic disease, and the pleurae or peritoneum rendered useless for study by adhesions, there is often
... , there is often difficulty in obtaining sufficiently good preservation. Unfortunately, even after thorough injections with a fluid of good hardening capacity, organs do not become sufficiently resistant to retain their form unless the material is moderately fresh when injected. Delay in the delivery of cadavers not uncommonly leads to practical disintegration of such perishable organs as the pancreas and suprarenals. A sufficient number of well preserved extra specimens with healthy viscera, prepared in various ways for study, are of great advantage for general reference. Such preparations, with replaceable viscera, etc., are used in many schools, and in a great measure obviate the difficulties above referred to. We have employed this method, but have abandoned it since the reference preparations require frequent replacement when handled by a large number of students. A sufficient quantity of young or middle aged material, free from chronic disease, is not available for the purpose. During the past few years, we have used casts of the viscera in place of reference preparations, and have found them extremely satisfactory and instructive. We began by casting the abdominal organs of a well-developed formalin-hardened male who died of double pneumonia a t the age of 42. The first casts were made by members of the staff.' Later w0 were fortunate in interesting a very skilled moulder who reproduced our originals and cast the remaining parts directly from our dissections.