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Cadaver's Funeral??

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by MustafaMond, Sep 27, 2002.

  1. MustafaMond

    MustafaMond K-Diddy M.D.
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    I just heard a story about how a lot of med-schools have a funeral service for the used cadavers, at the end of the year...

    This sounds strange to me, but I guess its proper.
    Any thoughts?
     
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  3. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    We have a memorial service at the end of our course, and someone gives a talk, but that's all I really know at this point.
     
  4. mpp

    mpp SDN Moderator
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    We call it a Convocation of Thanks. Family and friends of the deceased are invited. One person from each dissection group is nominated to help organize the event. Students volunteer to say something, recite poetry, play music, etc. The names of the donors are individually read and thanked for their contribution. Then there is an informal tea. There is a memorial at the nearby cemetery honoring those that gave their last gift that reads:

    Dedicated to the individuals
    who have donated their
    bodies to Mayo Foundation
    for anatomical study so
    that others might live.
     
  5. Kosmo

    Kosmo Senior Member
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    Our school had a service at a local cemetary where they buried the cremains. Oddly, the service was at the end of the school year... a good 6 months after anatomy ended. Some students spoke, and the names of each of the deceased were read aloud.

    If your school has one, I would recommend going. It's particularly interesting (and a tad awkward) to chat with the friends and family of the donors.
     
  6. Smoke This

    Smoke This Sweet cuppin' cakes!
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    We also have a memorial service. I think it's necessary and proper, and I'm looking forward to it.
     
  7. none

    none 1K Member
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    Wow...meeting the family would be really, really disturbing to me. UCI does have some stuff involving just the students, but the cadavers themselves are not buried, not does the family ever see any remains, ever as far as I know. The bodies are cremated and spread over the ocean by the willed body director.
     
  8. candybits

    candybits Senior Member
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    Our school has one too, and apparently it's the students (mostly in either 1st or 2nd year) or plan out the service. Not only their names will be read aloud, but also there will be poems, songs and even a mini orchestra involved, all organized and performed by the students. I think it's a wonderful idea, and upper year students have told me that the families who attend the service really appreciate it too.
     
  9. dentalapp

    dentalapp Member
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    But what family or friends ( or even the donor himself ) in their right minds would donate the bodies of their loved ones for dissection?

    Wouldn't it sicken them to even think that a bunch of twenty year olds would be carving up and commenting on a nude body?

    And for the funerals, do the med school directors arrange the bodies to be "restored" to the way they were before burial or cremation?
     
  10. mpp

    mpp SDN Moderator
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    For what reason would you not want your body used for the greater good?
     
  11. souljah1

    souljah1 Attending
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    Where I go to school not everyone is 20, and almost all of us are mature enough to recognize what a great privilege it is to have a person give their body to us for the sake of our knowledge in hopes that we add to the creater good. Your post speaks of your own views and your own immaturity. Willing your body (something only you can do) is highly admirable, in my opinion. Most medical students are not so immature to sit and giggle about the condition of a body. For in reality, most of my classmates approach the anatomy lab with great respect. The person that willed their body willed it so that YOU could learn. That is a tremendous gift, and is a decision that is made by many people who have a true love for humanity.

    Also, the 'funerals' are done so with the ashes. It is pretty hard to put a disected invidividual back together. The funerals are mainly done so as acts of respect. Perhaps if/when you take anatomy, you'll realize that the body laying before you is a gift, and is something that is worth showing some thanks and gratitude for.
     
  12. Long Hair and a Beard

    Long Hair and a Beard Obsessionist
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    Hey this really is a great idea!

    Our college doesn't have any of these things. .But if we knew that we were going to be involved in honouring the dead after one year, we might pay more respect to them during the year.

    I think I'll work on this ...
     
  13. outforblood

    outforblood Junior Member
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    hey souljah1 take it easy on dentalapp he's simply stating one of the obvious truths about the study of anatomy and that is that some students use humor to cope with this new experience. Don't get all high and mighty and make ridiculous statements how NO ONE at YOUR school does this. Dentalapp and his class mates are doing what we all do, and it doesn't meant that they are immature and that they don't respect the bodies at the same time.
     
  14. MustafaMond

    MustafaMond K-Diddy M.D.
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    More like "Convocation of Tanks"
     
  15. souljah1

    souljah1 Attending
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    i didn't say all of my classmates approach lab like i do..i said most or almost all. on the first day of gross we had a great lecture on the process one must go through to will a body, what willing a body means to us, and how we should always treat the bodies with respect. i'm just conveying the message that was conveyed to me. people can't will family members to be dissected, people must do it themselves. my apologies for coming off 'high and mighty', but the 20 year old carving up the cadaver and commenting on the nude body is something i haven't seen yet in my class. again, my bad if i came off high and mighty.


    .
     
  16. MustafaMond

    MustafaMond K-Diddy M.D.
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    We used to call one of the cadavers, "Biggie" cause he was so damn fat.

    One day, someone took purple chalk and chalked up our cadavers head. He ended up having a purple crew cut.
    He looked like a punk rocker.

    That kid got chewed out, big-time.

    That was probably the worst thing Ive ever seen.
    PS-(ive heard urban legends, of body parts being sliced off and transferred to the salad bar, or cut off nipples-stc. Ive never seen anything like that, or heard of it going on at my institution, but they are disturnimg, nonetheless.)
     
  17. anamarylee

    anamarylee A la grande le puse Cuca
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    Not everyone shares your particular views on the afterlife. Some people feel they are making a greater contribution to humanity by donating their bodies so that others may benefit from their deaths.

    I really hope you: a) know how to hide your particular views from your patients in the future or b) don't really think this way.

    Anyone who is planning on becoming a physician will meet people of many, many, many different backgrounds, with different views, different opinions about everything. As a physician, you HAVE to respect their views and opinions. You cannot force your own on them ever. Keep that in mind. Someone who donates their bodies for dissection simply has a different view than you do.
     
  18. Smurfette

    Smurfette Antagonized by Azrael
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    My school does the memorial ceremony and invites (cadaver)family members to come as well. The school found over the years that students had a need for some closure after experiencing anatomy lab.

    I chose not to attend mine...I just didn't feel right going to a ceremony in which med students were going to read their "thoughts" or poems about their anatomy dissection experiences. I personally was offended by the thought of my classmates getting up and making speeches as if they knew their cadavers in life, when in reality they know nothing about whom their cadaver was as a person (we didn't even learn the name until the ceremony). I've been to a lot of funerals, so I am a bit more sensitive to funerals and such than most people are. Some of my classmates really wanted the ceremony for their own closure and as a sign of respect and honor, and I don't have a problem with that.
     
  19. dentalapp

    dentalapp Member
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    But I was just stating the truth. How often do you hear of people donating bodies? Very rarely if ever. And besides, would you actually want to suggest the idea of cadaver donation to grieving family members? They'd probably take it as an insult and tell you the exact things that you told me.

    I agree that cadavers are necessary for medical education, but their usage strips them of their dignity. And so on a personal scale, I was just asking what type of people would actually offer such donations.
     
  20. Centrum

    Centrum SMILEY KING
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    Most people set it up before they die. My grandma has several friends who are donating their bodies to science. Not only does it lessen any financial burden on their kids, they are also contributing to society. I think it is a very noble thing.
     
  21. anamarylee

    anamarylee A la grande le puse Cuca
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    I don't know if it works like this at every school, but at mine, the donations are arranged before hand by the donor him/herself.

    Sometimes a funeral is a financial burden. Like Centrum said: donation lessens the financial burden on the family.

    And as for suggesting donation to a grieving family member, I know it's not the same, but it's along the lines of organ donations: it is done while the patient is about to die, when it's an inevitability. People see organ donations as a gift of life. To me, cadaver donations are the gift of knowledge. Either scenario is a gift.
     

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