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More than 2,000 years ago, the ancient Greeks studied anatomy. There are three main categories: Human anatomy, animal anatomy — zootomy, plant anatomy — phytotomy.
The study of human anatomy focuses on the human body’s structural makeup. Medical practitioners and professionals from other branches of healthcare require a solid understanding of anatomy.
The word ‘anatomy’ is derived from the Greek words ‘ana,’ which means ‘up,’ and ‘tome,’ which means ‘a cutting.’ Historically, anatomy studies have required dissecting or cutting up living things.Dissection is no longer necessary because computer imaging technology can now reveal a lot about how the internal body functions.
Definition of human anatomy
Anatomy is the science that deals with the structure of the body. Human anatomy is a major subject for medical students as it is required to study different ailments related to the human body.
Types of human anatomy
There are three major anatomical planes, Body parts divided accordingly —frontal, lateral, and transverse These views explain how anatomical structures relate to one another and to their positions, which are specified using exact terminology like superior, inferior, lateral, and many others. Widely used words for movements are flexion and extension.
There are two major divisions in human anatomy:
- Macroscopic or gross anatomy
- Microscopic anatomy
Starting off, let’s examine macroscopic or gross anatomy. As its name suggests, this division deals with substantial buildings that are typically visible to the naked eye. Similar to how a geographic map of an area depicts all the landmarks in a specific perimeter, it describes the topography of every human body structure.
In addition, it explains the starting and ending locations, layering, and other characteristics of the structures, as well as how they relate to one another.
There are two primary methods for learning gross anatomy: regional and systemic.
The body is divided into various body sections or regions in regional anatomy, including the head, neck, thorax, abdomen, and pelvis. Through the use of discrete regional didactic zones, each of which has its own set of bones, joints, muscles, arteries, veins, nerves, lymphatics, and organs, this method separates teaching from learning and helps in a better understanding of body functions.
It is crucial to understand the anatomy of every part of the human body. How does the brain interact with other body parts, like the hand, to cause a movement or detect objects?
As neuroanatomy explains, by the use of nerves, every bodily process is under the control of the nervous system. It plays a role in higher-order cognitive processes like consciousness and emotional behavior as well as physiological functions, including body temperature, voluntary movements, and higher-order thinking.
The human body also comprises several anatomical components and regionally distributed physiological systems. The second branch of human anatomy, known as systemic anatomy, separates the body into distinct organ systems that cooperate to perform a single task or function. Integumentary, musculoskeletal (skeletal, muscular), nervous, endocrine, circulatory, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, and lymphatic are the ten systems that are included in systemic anatomy.
We have so far talked about gross anatomy, which is the study of the vast or macroscopic structures of the human body. What transpires at the microscopic level, where objects are so little that only a microscopic eye can see them?
The study of tissues and how they are arranged into organs and organ systems is known as microscopic anatomy, which is the second branch of human anatomy. This branch of anatomy makes use of the magnifying abilities of microscopes since it studies structures that are hardly visible to the unaided eye, such as minuscule arteries, veins, capillaries, and nerves.
Characteristics of human anatomy
- Although the human body is a single entity, it is composed of billions of smaller entities of the four main types of structure: cells, tissues, organs, and systems.
- An organ is a collection of various tissue types that have been organized in such a way that they may work as a unit to carry out a certain function.
- A system is an arrangement of various organ types and numbers that, when working together, may carry out complex body functions.
- The ten primary systems of the human body include the skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, circulatory, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems.
- Body systems’ physiological or psychological processes are called bodily functions. In order to survive, the body must keep its internal environment in a state of homeostasis, which is a state of relative constancy.
- The organization, metabolism, responsiveness, motions, reproduction, development, differentiation, respiration, digestion, and excretion are all components of the human life process.
- For the individual’s well-being and to sustain life, all of these systems interact with one another in well-calibrated harmony.
- Life is dependent on a number of environmental physical elements, such as water, oxygen, nutrition, heat, and pressure.
- Identification and description of the living organisms’ structures is the purpose of human anatomy. It belongs to the biology and medicine fields where anatomy is used to identify solutions to health problems.
- The body is divided into frontal, lateral, and transverse perspectives by three major anatomical planes in human anatomy. These views explain how anatomical structures relate to one another, which are specified using exact terminology like superior, inferior, lateral.
- Reproduction, inheritance, cellular organization, growth and development, reaction to stimuli, evolutionary adapted traits, metabolism are characteristics of human anatomy. According to human anatomy, to be categorized as a living entity, it must possess these characteristics.
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Q1. Who is the father of human anatomy?
Ans- In 1514, Belgian-born physician and anatomist Andreas Vesalius was born into a medical family. His work marked the start of modern medicine, and he is regarded as the father of modern anatomy.
Q2. What are the branches of physiology?
Ans-Anatomy, histology, cellular physiology, organ physiology, and systemic physiology are the five main disciplines of physiology.
Q3. Are physiologists also considered doctors?
Ans-Physiologists are medical experts with advanced degrees in physiology. They hold a master’s or doctoral degree. Physiology and Medical are two different courses and physiologists are not considered doctors.