Anatomage Table

Instructors talking around the Anatomage Table
Gordy Kokx and James Schneider

Highly advanced 3D tool revolutionizes human anatomy and physiology education

Note to reader: This article contains digital cadaver imagery.

In spring 2022, the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Paramedic and Biology programs at Inver Hills Community College acquired a state-of-the-tech  Anatomage Table to teach students about human anatomy and physiology. A 3D anatomy visualization and virtual dissection tool, the Anatomage Table gives students the chance to work with well-preserved digital cadavers rather than degenerating human bodies, creating opportunities for interactions with far more anatomical and pathological variations.

According to Anatomage literature, “The Anatomage Table is the only fully segmented real human 3D anatomy system. Users can visualize anatomy exactly as they would on a fresh cadaver. Individual structures are reconstructed in accurate 3D, resulting in an unprecedented level of real accurate anatomy, dissectible in 3D. The Table allows for exploration and learning of human anatomy beyond what any cadaver could offer.”

Kristin Digiulio serves as biology faculty at the college. Kristin is very impressed by the power and potential of the Anatomage Table.

“This technology blows my mind,” she said. “For example, you can slice a cadaver in any plane, and instantly spin the result to see every angle and structure in 3D.  This brings our students to the next level. It’s also been great to see our EMS, biology, and nursing faculty collaborating on this project. The passion and energy they have is really off the charts. It’s one of the things I love so much about Inver Hills.”

Anatomage Table gallery

Note to reader: This photo gallery contains digital cadaver imagery.

Faculty perspectives

Biology Instructor: James Schneider Q & A

What persuaded you to include the Anatomage Table in your biology curriculum?

It is common practice to use representative mammal dissections and plastic models as tools to help students explore human anatomy. Both can be used very effectively, but they both also have limitations as they are only similar to real human anatomy.

I saw the table presented in a TED Talk a number of years ago and was immediately impressed with its capabilities. Not only does it show the real anatomy of four different cadavers, but it allows for dissecting, measuring, scanning through layers, isolating systems, organs, and tissues, and a lot more. It has built in case studies and interactive quizzes with room to create and save instructional tools. It is really quite impressive.

What course(s) do you teach that use the Anatomage Table?

Anatomy and Physiology I and II. The Table could also work well in our Forensics course and Human Biology.

What advantages do your biology students gain from interacting with the Anatomage Table?

One huge advantage over the anatomical models we use, is the fact that the table allows students to experience real human cadavers. While the models are great, they are cookie-cutter representations that give learners the idea that we are all the same on the inside. The Anatomage Table is particularly good at helping students understand that we are all different on the inside just as we are all different on the outside. This is a really important realization for students of human anatomy and physiology.

How does the Anatomage Table help enhance teaching and learning for both instructors and students?

Students are excited about the table when I first talk about it in class and their level of engagement skyrockets when they are in the room with the table. I love to go through an introduction to each of the four cadavers, listen to the gasps and try to field the barrage of questions. That engagement fosters a positive and productive teaching and learning experience and ultimately more students will gain the deeper understanding we seek for them. Other than instructional presentations, I let students work in small groups at the table to explore and take short practical quizzes.

EMS Director: Gordy Kokx Q &A

What persuaded you to include the Anatomage Table in your EMS curriculum?

We incorporate the Anatomage Table throughout our courses; especially in relation to pathophysiology, cardiology, medical emergencies, and trauma emergencies.

What course(s) do you teach that use the Anatomage Table?

The Anatomage Table allows us to study human anatomy and physiology in a truly lifelike way that affords students a better understanding of both how the body functions as well as how it reacts to trauma and disease.

What do your EMS students like best about interacting with the Anatomage Table?

We incorporate the Anatomage Table throughout our courses; especially in relation to pathophysiology, cardiology, medical emergencies, and trauma emergencies.

How does training on the Anatomage Table help your EMS students transition to careers as professional paramedics?

The training provides our graduates with a view into the body that helps them correlate organ locations and the potential injuries, as well as the disease processes that may affect patients. This increases the ability to accurately assess patients and most importantly, arrive at proper diagnoses of emergency conditions.

Note to reader: The following videos contain digital cadaver imagery.

EMS Anatomage Table: Aortic Aneurysm:

EMS Anatomage Table: Gastric Cancer

EMS Anatomage Table: Xiphoid Process

Learn more about the Anatomage Table at Inver Hills by contacting:

Kristin Digiulio
Biology Faculty
Departments: Biology, Environmental Science
Inver Hills Community College

Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan visited the Inver Hills campus in early October 2022. One stop the governor and lieutenant governor made during their tour was the EMS Paramedic area in Heritage Hall, where they inspected the Anatomage Table with guidance from EMS Director Gordy Kokx.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *