Shortage of dead bodies affecting Anatomy study in Nigeria – Unilorin Professor bemoans

A Professor of Anatomy identified as Moyosore Salihu Ajao, a lecturer with the University of Ilorin, has bemoaned the paucity of cadavers in medical schools for anatomy and practical training.

The professor brought up the topic during the university’s 214th Inaugural Lecture.

Anatomy expert stated that the task is more tougher because no one sells dead bodies on the market anywhere in the globe. He emphasized, however, that written explanations of dimensional drawings or plastic models are insufficient for fully comprehending human anatomy.

Expounding on the issue, he stated that his analysis indicated that there are various causes of scarcity in Nigerian Medical Institutions, which indicates a low student-to-cadaver ratio during medical school courses in Nigeria.

In his words;

“They are never sold in the market in any part of the world. Since human anatomy is the science that is concerned with the structures of the human body, these structures cannot be fully understood from written descriptions to dimensional pictures or plastic models.

The dissection of the human body (cadavers) is the basis for understanding the structure and functions of the human body for several centuries. In other words, to fully understand the importance of cadavers to man is far and beyond what we should overlook.

The first major challenge I noticed on my assumption of office as a young lecturer in the department of anatomy was the chronic shortages of cadavers in the department and after a quick check on other universities, I discovered that we are not alone in the struggle to get bodies fit enough for dissection.

One of my studies revealed that about 12 to 15 students used a body against International Standard that recommend maximum of six students to one body. The National Universities Commission recommends an average of eight students per body in Nigeria.”