History Anatomists

The exact pathology of the human form, variant CreutzfeldtJakob disease (vCJD) has meant that patients donating their body who suffered from Alzheimers or dementia and of course vCJD means their brains cannot be handled. As the method of transmission of these diseases and the link between them (i.e. is Alzheimers vCJD and vice versa) is not fully understood these precautions have to be taken. Very symptomatic patients are also not normally accepted for cadavers.However this means that students are more limited on what they can dissect within the head, this is particularly a problem in medical schools where dissection is still carried out. It is less of a problem where prosection is carried out as the specimen will have already been dissected.