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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 101-104

Attitude of Jos University medical students to their initial encounter with cadavers in the dissecting room

1 Department of Human Anatomy, University of Jos, Jos, Nigeria
2 Department of Human Physiology, University of Jos, Jos, Nigeria
3 Department of Community Medicine, University of Jos, Jos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
A I Shugaba
Department of Human Anatomy, University of Jos, Jos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1596-2393.177027

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Objective: This study aimed to discover the emotional reactions, attitudes and beliefs of undergraduate medical students of University of Jos medical school to 1st time encounter with human cadaver. Materials and Methods: A structured pretested and validated questionnaire was administered to 450 students of 200 to 500 levels all at the same time in May 2012. The age of the students ranged from 21 to 26 years with mean age of 23.1 years. Results: 26.1%, 15.6%, 32.3%, and 15.2% of the 200, 300, 400, and 500 level students, respectively, indicated great anxiety as their reaction to the first experience with cadaver. The fear of infection was the most common cause of worry for the studied population (71.4%, 70%, 49.3%, and 87.3% for the 200, 300, 400, and 500 levels, respectively). A number of students had no symptoms on their first encounter with cadavers (40.5% of 200, 34.4% of 300, 27.7% of 400, and 51.9% of 500 levels) however; dizziness was a common symptom experienced. Conclusion: Overwhelming majority were of the opinion that cadaver dissection should not be substituted with visuals because cadaver dissection gives the students better appreciation of the three-dimensional. Assessment of the attitudes and reactions of medical students could help medical tutors to formulate better strategies to develop academic and clinical competences.

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