Flávia Caroline da Silva Lopes (1)

Noília Gomes de Lima (1)

(1) Graduanda do Curso de Medicina do Centro Universitário Cesmac (CESMAC), Maceió – AL.



The last decade has brought about a growing number of medical schools in the country, which results in an increase in the demand for cadavers for the study of Human Anatomy. The use of bodies as an academic teaching instrument is the subject of discussions because it involves ethical-legal issues. However, the relevance of future professionals’ familiarity with anatomical pieces is indisputable, since this experience will allow greater safety for the handling of the living body. In the light of what is exposed in Law 8.501 / 92 of November 30, 1992, unidentified corpses will be used for educational purposes or those for which information is not available regarding addresses of relatives or legal guardians, once they have been identified. The difficulty of obtaining corpses for study is that there is not a well-elucidated legislation added to the cultural and religious aspects of the population. According to article 6 of the Brazilian Civil Code “The existence of the natural person ends with death”. Contrary to the article, author Jean Ziegler argues that “The dead continue to act beyond death.” This study aims to: emphasize the importance of the study of anatomy with cadavers in the training of health professionals and demonstrate the difficulty of obtaining cadavers for teaching and research. Methods: This literature review counted the survey of works in the Scielo database, from 2006 to 2015; As well as the use of articles referring to the Personal Rights of the 2nd edition of the Brazilian Civil Code of 2008. Results: The importance of the association of the classic methodology that uses cadaveric parts with innovative methods, such as artificial anatomical models and virtual dissection, is shown.

Keywords: corpses, dissection, didactic use of bodies

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