Online first
Original article
Published online: 2024-04-22

open access

Page views 129
Article views/downloads 101
Get Citation

Connect on Social Media

Connect on Social Media

Study of social awareness regarding body donations for scientific and educational purposes

Radosław Karaś1, Tomasz Lepich1, Krzysztof Starszak1, Grzegorz Bajor12

Abstract

Background: The basis of teaching anatomy is the understanding of the body’s structures using human cadavers. Body donation should be a fully conscious and voluntary act. There is a growing demand for human cadavers in medical universities. To meet these demands, it is necessary to understand the societal awareness regarding body donation.

Materials and methods: The study utilized a proprietary single-choice questionnaire while maintaining the anonymity of the respondents. The study included 1004 individuals, comprising 700 women and 304 men. The analysis employed the Mann-Whitney test, Pearson’s chi-squared test with calculation of the Cramer’s V coefficient.

Results: Among the respondents, 56.37% consider donating their bodies for scientific and educational purposes. Among the concerns associated with donation, fear of lack of proper respect for the remains by students (18.23%), family opposition (16.24%), and religious reasons (9.16%) were highlighted. Non-religious individuals are more inclined to donate their bodies for scientific and educational purposes than religious individuals (p < 0.001). Residents of rural areas and small towns are less likely to consider donating their bodies for scientific and educational purposes than residents of large cities (p = 0.002). As many as 85.76% of respondents believe that human remains are essential for effective anatomy education.

Conclusions: Increasing public awareness of cadaver donation may contribute to increasing the effectiveness of anatomy teaching at medical universities.

Article available in PDF format

View PDF Download PDF file

References

  1. Abbasi Asl J, Nikzad H, Taherian A, et al. Cultural acceptability and personal willingness of Iranian students toward cadaveric donation. Anat Sci Educ. 2017; 10(2): 120–126.
  2. Alamneh Y. Knowledge and attitude towards ethical cadaver dissection among medical and health sciences students, 1997–2020: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Transl Res Anat. 2021; 25: 100149.
  3. Alexander M, Marten M, Stewart E, et al. Attitudes of Australian chiropractic students toward whole body donation: a cross-sectional study. Anat Sci Educ. 2014; 7(2): 117–123.
  4. Anyanwu EG, Obikili EN, Agu AU. The dissection room experience: A factor in the choice of organ and whole body donation--a Nigerian survey. Anat Sci Educ. 2014; 7(1): 56–63.
  5. Arráez-Aybar LA, Biasutto S, Amer MAR, et al. Latin American Anatomists' views on human body dissection and donation. Ann Anat. 2023; 246: 152037.
  6. Arráez-Aybar LA, Bueno-López JL, Moxham BJ. Anatomists' views on human body dissection and donation: an international survey. Ann Anat. 2014; 196(6): 376–386.
  7. Asante EA, Maalman RS, Ali MA, et al. Perception and attitude of medical students towards cadaveric dissection in anatomical science education. Ethiop J Health Sci. 2021; 31(4): 867–874.
  8. Azer SA, Eizenberg N. Do we need dissection in an integrated problem-based learning medical course? Perceptions of first- and second-year students. Surg Radiol Anat. 2007; 29(2): 173–180.
  9. Bahşi İ, Topal Z, Çetkin M, et al. Evaluation of attitudes and opinions of medical faculty students against the use of cadaver in anatomy education and investigation of the factors affecting their emotional responses related thereto. Surg Radiol Anat. 2021; 43(4): 481–487.
  10. Bajor G, Likus W, Kuszewski P, et al. "Mortui vivos docent" or who gives his body to science? The analysis of the personal questionnaires of Polish donors in the Conscious Body Donation Program. PLoS One. 2015; 10(3): e0121061.
  11. Barcik J, Pilarz Ł. Wykorzystanie zwłok i szczątków ludzkich przez studentów do celów dydaktycznych a przestępstwo znieważenia zwłok z art. 262 § 1 kk. 2016.
  12. Boduç E, Allahverdi TD. Medical students' views on cadaver and organ donation. Transplant Proc. 2022; 54(8): 2057–2062.
  13. Bolt S, Venbrux E, Eisinga R, et al. Anatomist on the dissecting table? Dutch anatomical professionals' views on body donation. Clin Anat. 2012; 25(2): 168–175.
  14. Boulware LE, Ratner LE, Cooper LA, et al. Whole body donation for medical science: a population-based study. Clin Anat. 2004; 17(7): 570–577.
  15. Cahill KC, Ettarh RR. Student attitudes to whole body donation are influenced by dissection. Anat Sci Educ. 2008; 1(5): 212–216.
  16. Champney TH. A bioethos for bodies: respecting a priceless resource. Anat Sci Educ. 2019; 12(4): 432–434.
  17. Chu SY, Tseng TC, Ho YC, et al. The impact of a gross anatomy curriculum with donor family interaction: thematic analysis of student letters to silent mentors. Acad Med. 2022; 97(7): 1065–1070.
  18. Ciliberti R, Gulino M, Gazzaniga V, et al. A survey on the knowledge and attitudes of italian medical students toward body donation: ethical and scientific considerations. J Clin Med. 2018; 7(7).
  19. Coulehan J, Williams P, Landis D, et al. The first patient: Reflections and stories about the anatomy cadaver. Teach Learn Med. 1992; 7(1): 61–66.
  20. da Rocha AO, Maués JL, Chies GA, et al. Assessing the impact of a ceremony in honor of the body donors in the development of ethical and humanistic attitudes among medical students. Anat Sci Educ. 2020; 13(4): 467–474.
  21. Gama BZDe, Bhengu TT, Satyapal KS. Attitudes of undergraduate south african students towards body donation. Int J Morphol. 2018; 36(1): 130–134.
  22. Ebeye A, OJEBOR C, ALABI A. Perception of organ and corpse donation among students of basic medical sciences. Int J Forensic Med Invest. 2016; 2(1): 8.
  23. El-Haddad J, Prvan T, Štrkalj G. Attitudes of anatomy students toward commemorations for body donors: a multicultural perspective. Anat Sci Educ. 2021; 14(1): 89–98.
  24. Galić B, Drvendžija Z, Štrkalj G. Attitudes of medical and allied medical students from Serbia toward whole body donation. Biosci J. 2016: 1388–1402.
  25. Garment A, Lederer S, Rogers N, et al. Let the dead teach the living: the rise of body bequeathal in 20th-century America. Acad Med. 2007; 82(10): 1000–1005.
  26. Gerbi A, Bekele M, Tesfaye S, et al. Knowledge, attitude, and willingness towards cadaveric organ donation among Jimma University medical centre health care professionals. Transl Res Anat. 2020; 18: 100056.
  27. Ghosh SK. Human cadaveric dissection: a historical account from ancient Greece to the modern era. Anat Cell Biol. 2015; 48(3): 153–169.
  28. Ghosh SK, Walocha JA. Responsible research in the practice of anatomy: attributes relevant to body donors and human tissues sourced from them. Ann Anat. 2024; 252: 152184.
  29. Green C, Bowden D, Molony D, et al. Attitudes of the medical profession to whole body and organ donation. Surgeon. 2014; 12(2): 73–77.
  30. Habicht JL, Kiessling C, Winkelmann A. Bodies for anatomy education in medical schools: an overview of the sources of cadavers worldwide. Acad Med. 2018; 93(9): 1293–1300.
  31. Halliday NL, Moon MB, O'Donoghue DL, et al. Transformation and closure for anatomical donor families that meet medical students. Anat Sci Educ. 2019; 12(4): 399–406.
  32. Hasselblatt F, Messerer DAC, Keis O, et al. Anonymous body or first patient? A status report and needs assessment regarding the personalization of donors in dissection courses in German, Austrian, and Swiss Medical Schools. Anat Sci Educ. 2018; 11(3): 282–293.
  33. Jenkin RA, Garrett SA, Keay KA. Altruism in death: attitudes to body and organ donation in Australian students. Anat Sci Educ. 2023; 16(1): 27–46.
  34. Kalthur S, Pandey A, Prabhath S. Benefits and pitfalls of learning anatomy using the dissection module in an indian medical school: A millennial Learner's perspective. Transl Res Anat. 2022; 26: 100159.
  35. Korf HW, Wicht H, Snipes RL, et al. The dissection course — necessary and indispensable for teaching anatomy to medical students. Ann Anat. 2008; 190(1): 16–22.
  36. Kostorrizos A, Koukakis A, Samolis A, et al. Body donation for research and teaching purposes: the contribution of blood donation units in the progress of anatomical science. Folia Morphol. 2019; 78(3): 575–581.
  37. Mwachaka PM, Mandela P, Saidi H. Repeated exposure to dissection does not influence students' attitudes towards human body donation for anatomy teaching. Anat Res Int. 2016; 2016: 9251049.
  38. Noël GP, Dubé J, Venne G. The unintentional effects on body donation programs of a competency-based curriculum in postgraduate medical education. Anat Sci Educ. 2021; 14(5): 675–681.
  39. Oktem H, Pelin C, Kurkcuoglu A, et al. Attitudes of Turkish university employees and their relatives towards whole body and organ donation. Ann Anat. 2020; 229: 151426.
  40. Perry GF, Ettarh RR. Age modulates attitudes to whole body donation among medical students. Anat Sci Educ. 2009; 2(4): 167–172.
  41. Quiroga-Garza A, Reyes-Hernández CG, Zarate-Garza PP, et al. Willingness toward organ and body donation among anatomy professors and students in Mexico. Anat Sci Educ. 2017; 10(6): 589–597.
  42. Riederer BM. Body donations today and tomorrow: What is best practice and why? Clin Anat. 2016; 29(1): 11–18.
  43. Saha A, Sarkar A, Mandal S. Body donation after death: the mental setup of educated people. J Clin Diagn Res. 2015; 9(6): AC05–AC09.
  44. Saritha S, Rao MV, Supriya G, et al. Voluntary body donation: The gift that lives on forever. IJOART. 2012; 1(5): 273–280.
  45. Sehirli US, Saka E, Sarikaya O. Attitudes of Turkish anatomists toward cadaver donation. Clin Anat. 2004; 17(8): 677–681.
  46. Sheikh AH, Barry DS, Gutierrez H, et al. Cadaveric anatomy in the future of medical education: What is the surgeons view? Anat Sci Educ. 2016; 9(2): 203–208.
  47. Singh P, Phuyal N, Khadka S, et al. Knowledge of medical students and faculties of a medical college towards human body and organ donation: a descriptive cross-sectional study. JNMA J Nepal Med Assoc. 2021; 59(234): 141–145.
  48. Vertemati M, Rizzetto F, Vezzulli F, et al. Teaching anatomy in a modern medical course: an integrated approach at Vialba Medical School in Milan. MedEdPublish. 2018; 7: 19.