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International journal of odontostomatology

versión On-line ISSN 0718-381X


LIMA, Laíse Nascimento Correia et al. Respect for the Donated Corpse in the View of Dentistry and Medicine Students. Int. J. Odontostomat. [online]. 2017, vol.11, n.2, pp.141-146. ISSN 0718-381X.

The teaching of human anatomy in universities in Brazil and around the world is accomplished mainly through the use of donated corpses. However, this methodology is threatened due to the progressive reduction of the number of corpses donated to educational institutions. This research aimed to investigate the ethical profile of undergraduate students of Medicine and Dentistry when working with the corpses during practical classes in anatomy, and to compare the students' knowledge of the law that regulates the donation and use of human cadavers as a means of learning in educational institutions. For this purpose, a sample of 106 students, 63 from the Faculty of Dentistry of Piracicaba - UNICAMP -, and 43 from the Faculty of Medicine of Jundiaí (both in the state of São Paulo, Brazil) filled a questionnaire. The data were statistically analyzed using the chi-square test, and there were virtually no statistically significant difference between the responses of the students of Dentistry and Medicine. Most students did not know the law, and 81 % (Dentistry) and 68 % (Medicine) would not donate their bodies to educational institutions. Although nearly 75 % of students have claimed that teachers emphasized the importance of respect to the donated body, 56 % of future dentists and 46 % of future physicians ensure they have heard some kind of joke about the cadaver during class, although only 4.76 % and 13.95 %, respectively, have confessed to have already presented this inappropriate behavior. Thus, it can be inferred that there is an urgent need for dissemination of the importance of body donation programs, and the teaching of ethical principles concerning to the corpse, to ensure continuity of quality of education offered in biomedical field.

Palabras clave : death anatomy; education; cadaver; ethics.

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