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Scholars Journal of Applied Medical Sciences | Volume-8 | Issue-03
The Attitudes of Medical Students in University of Port Harcourt to Cadaveric Dissection
Peter D. Okoh, John N. Paul, Edna I. Ogbonda
Published: March 21, 2020 | 50 26
DOI: 10.36347/sjams.2020.v08i03.031
Pages: 961-965
Background: The attitudes of Medical Students to Cadaveric dissection was studied in students from 200-300 levels at the University of Port Harcourt. Materials and Methods: Questionnaires were administered randomly to 400 students in the departments of Anatomy, Physiology and Medicine in the Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences, College of Health Sciences; 362 students responded. Results and Discussion: Out of 400 students only 362 completed the questionnaires. Only the completed questionnaires were used for this study. The uncompleted ones were excluded. 149 (41.2%) were males and 213(58.8%) were females. The mean age was 22.6 years. 28 (7.7%) were between the ages of 17 and 19 years, 307 (84.8%) were between the ages of 20 and 25 years and 27 (7.5%) were between the ages of 26 and 30 years. From the result, 316 (87.3%) of the students had previously seen a dead body and 183 (50.5%) had been very traumatized by the event. When the students were asked about their feelings before they entered the dissecting room, majority of the students indicated that they were tensed, 149 (41.2%), 93 (25.7%) were excited 37 (10.2%) said they were peaceful, 31(9.1%) were fearful and 50 (13.8%) were without any obvious emotions. Analysis of the data obtained shows that although some students expressed a positive attitude toward the experience at their first entrance and during subsequent dissections, a few students reported a negative attitude initially, which includes fear, nausea, nightmares, rhinitis, irritation and redness of eye, revulsion at the smell of the cadavers, drowsiness and restlessness. Conclusion: These initial stress reactions dissipated after some weeks of exposure to dissection room. Suppression and repression were used by students to cope with these feelings. Some students reported that cadaveric dissections were a better way to learn or teach anatomy as it brings the knowledge home seeing the structures and how they are situated in proximity to one another.