Acta Scientific Gastrointestinal Disorders (ASGIS)(ISSN: 2582-1091)

Research Article Volume 6 Issue 12

The Use of Autopsy as a Teaching Tool in Medicine

Marcus Cezillo*, Robson Uwagoya, Hugo Gregoris de Lima

Department of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Municipal Hospital Antônio Giglio, Osasco, Brazil

*Corresponding Author: Marcus Cezillo, Department of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Municipal Hospital Antônio Giglio, Osasco, Brazil.

Received: September 21, 2023; Published: November 14, 2023


While the investigation of death in the form of autopsy has contributed significantly to advances in medical education and research, modern technology in the form of diagnostic methods has diminished the relevance of internal examination of cadavers as a valuable learning tool. The absence of realistic training models, coupled with a perception of the importance of autopsy in academic activities, has led educators and especially students to confirm the benefits observed in research, including anatomical knowledge, observational skills, the development of attitudes towards death, and improved communication skills with the bereaved. This underscores the need for a revision of current curricula and teaching guidelines.

Keywords: Autopsy; Education; Teaching; Training; Cadaver


  1. Dehner LP. “The medical autopsy: past, present, and dubious future”. Missouri Medicine 2 (2010): 94-100.
  2. Samuel JMM Alberti and Piers D Mitchell (edition.), Anatomical Dissection in Enlightenment England and Beyond: Autopsy, Pathology and Display, Social History of Medicine 27.1 (2014): 182-183.
  3. Mopec- Elevating Patology. “History of the autopsy”. Madison (2023).
  4. Perez CP and Andrade SC. “Dead people tell us history”. ComCiência (2014): 163.
  5. Dell'Aquila M., et al. “Postmodernism and the decline of the clinical autopsy”. Virchows Archiv 4 (2021): 861-863. 
  6. Stempsey WE. “The Penetrating Gaze and the Decline of the Autopsy”. AMA Journal of Ethics 8 (2016): 833-838.
  7. Jornal Medicina - CFM (2016).
  8. Rodrigues FR., et al. “The dramatic decline of the autopsies at a Brazilian university hospital in the last 20 years”. Jornal Brasileiro de Patologia e Medicina Laboratori 4 (2011).
  9. Hamza A. “Declining rate of autopsies: implications for anatomic pathology residents”. Autopsy and Case Reports 4 (2017): 1-2. 
  10. Buja LM., et al. “The Importance of the Autopsy in Medicine: Perspectives of Pathology Colleagues”. Academic Pathology 6 (2019): 2374289519834041. 
  11. Charlton R. “Autopsy and medical education: a review”. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 4 (1994): 232-236.
  12. Angrist AA. “Effective use of autopsy in medical education: Its role in correlation and integration”. JAMA 4 (1956): 303-309.
  13. Hearle P., et al. “Undergraduate medical student perspectives on the role of autopsy in medical education”. Academic Pathology 1 (2023): 100068.
  14. Pakanen L., et al. “Autopsy-based learning is essential but underutilized in medical education: a questionnaire study”. Anatomical Sciences Education 2 (2022): 341-351.
  15. Waheed G., et al. “Autopsy as a part of curriculum: student's perceptive”. Journal of Ayub Medical College Abbottabad 3 (2011): 105-109.
  16. Tandon A., et al. “Perceptions of medical students towards autopsy teaching and its significance”. Medicine, Science and the Law3 (2019): 143-148.
  17. Green BN., et al. “Writing narrative literature reviews for peer-reviewed journals: secrets of the trade”. Journal of Sports Chiropractic and Rehabilitation 15 (2001): 5-19.
  18. Mourad Ouzzani., et al. “Rayyan- a web and mobile app for systematic reviews”. Systematic Reviews 5 (2016): 210.
  19. Baethge C., et al. “SANRA-a scale for the quality assessment of narrative review articles”. Research Integrity and Peer Review 4 (2019): 5.
  20. King LS and Meehan MC. “A history of the autopsy: a review”. The American Journal of Pathology 2 (1973): 514-544.
  21. Hoffman RD. “The Autopsy in Medical Education and Training. In: Hooper, J., Williamson, A. (eds) Autopsy in the 21st Springer, Cham (2019). 
  22. Ghosh SK. “Cadaveric dissection as an educational tool for anatomical sciences in the 21st century”. Anatomical Sciences Education 3 (2017): 286-299. 
  23. Nova CCC. “The curriculum and the relationship between teaching and research in initial teacher training: tensions for teaching”. Espaço do Currículo 3 (2015): 345-355.
  24. Costa GBF., et al. “The corpse in the teaching of humananatomy: a methodological and bioethics overview”. Revista Brasileira de Educação 3 (2012). 
  25. Alamneh YM. “Knowledge and attitude towards ethical cadaver dissection among medical and health sciences students, 1997-2020: A systematic review and meta-analysis”. Translational Research in Anatomy (2021): 25-100149.
  26. Bezerra PM., et al. “Ethical and legal analysis of scientific research on corpses in Brazil”. Revista Bioética 3 (2020).
  27. Tesfaye S., et al. “Assessment of Ethical Compliance of Handling and Usage of the Human Body in Anatomical Facilities of Ethiopian Medical Schools”. Pragmatic and Observational Research 12 (2021): 65-80.
  28. Singh R., et al. “Is the decline of human anatomy hazardous to medical education/profession?-A review”. Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy10 (2015): 1257-1265. 
  29. Alhassan A and Majeed S. “Perception of Ghanaian medical students of cadaveric dissection in a problem-based learning curriculum”. Pragmatic and Observational Research (2018): 3868204.
  30. Asante EA., et al. “Perception and Attitude of Medical Students towards Cadaveric Dissection in Anatomical Science Education”. Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences 4 (2021): 867-874.
  31. Dissabandara LO., et al. “Role of cadaveric dissections in modern medical curricula: a study on student perceptions”. Anatomy and Cell Biology3 (2015): 205-212.
  32. Sharma S and Gupta V. “A study on the approach of medical students towards cadaver in the dissection hall”. JK Science3 (2017): 187-190. 
  33. Izunya AM., et al. “Attitudes to cadaver dissection in a Nigerian medical school”. Asian Journal of Medical Sciences3 (2010): 89-94.
  34. Chang HJ., et al. “Emotional experiences of medical students during cadaver dissection and the role of memorial ceremonies: a qualitative study”. BMC Medical Education 1 (2018): 255. 
  35. Ghosh SK. “Paying respect to human cadavers: We owe this to the first teacher in anatomy”. Annals of Anatomy 211 (2017): 129-134. 
  36. Burton JL. “The autopsy in modern undergraduate medical education: a qualitative study of uses and curriculum considerations”. Medical Education 12 (2003): 1073-1081.
  37. Vimercati L., et al. “Formaldehyde exposure and irritative effects on medical examiners, pathologic anatomy post-graduate students and technicians”. Iranian Journal of Public Health 4 (2010): 26-34.
  38. Jeyakumar A., et al. “Dissection in the Modern Medical Curriculum: An Exploration into Student Perception and Adaptions for the Future”. Anatomical Sciences Education 3 (2019): 366-380.
  39. McNamee LS., et al. “Student perceptions of medico-legal autopsy demonstrations in a student-centred curriculum”. Medical Education 1 (2009): 66-73. 
  40. Thompson KL., et al. “Cadaveric Dissection in Relation to Problem-Based Learning Case Sequencing: A Report of Medical Student Musculoskeletal Examination Performances and Self-Confidence”. Anatomical Sciences Education6 (2019): 619-626.


Citation: Marcus Cezillo., et al. “The Use of Autopsy as a Teaching Tool in Medicine".Acta Scientific Gastrointestinal Disorders 6.12 (2023): 41-44.


Copyright: © 2023 Marcus Cezillo., et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Acceptance rate35%
Acceptance to publication20-30 days

Indexed In

News and Events

  • Certification for Review
    Acta Scientific certifies the Editors/reviewers for their review done towards the assigned articles of the respective journals.
  • Submission Timeline for Upcoming Issue
    The last date for submission of articles for regular Issues is May 30, 2024.
  • Publication Certificate
    Authors will be issued a "Publication Certificate" as a mark of appreciation for publishing their work.
  • Best Article of the Issue
    The Editors will elect one Best Article after each issue release. The authors of this article will be provided with a certificate of "Best Article of the Issue"
  • Welcoming Article Submission
    Acta Scientific delightfully welcomes active researchers for submission of articles towards the upcoming issue of respective journals.

Contact US