hello welcome to the first of our
language of anatomy videos video 1 the
anatomical position and directional
terms in this PowerPoint we will
describe the position of the body in the
anatomical position describe the
position of the body when the body is in
the prone position describe the position
of the body when the body is in the
supine position and use directional
terms to describe the position of a
human body structure relative to another
human body structure the first slide
shows you a picture of a woman standing
in the anatomical position and the
anatomical position of a person must be
standing up straight their feet must be
close together but not touching with
toes pointed forwards in the anatomical
position the arms must be at at the
person sides with the palms facing
forwards not with your palms facing your
thighs kind of in the natural position
put your palms facing forward like you
see the woman in the image here doing ok
notice the laser pointer and the
position of her hands individuals can be
described as either prone or supine when
they're in in the lying down position if
a person is described as supine they'll
be lying down on their back face up
typically in the anatomical position if
a person is described as prone that
person will be lying face down typically
in the anatomical position it is
important to have the anatomical
position as a reference because if
you're going to discuss say some
anatomical feature you have to have a
common reference point with the person
that you're discussing it with
imagine if you're trying to talk to a
physician in Miami when you're in Los
Angeles over the phone and you're
describing this patient you think this
patient is lying faced face up in the
supine position and the person you're
talking to is imagining this patient in
the seated position you have to have a
common reference point to be able to
discuss important features when you're
describing structures in the human body
it is common to use a set of directional
terms that you can see laid out for you
here so superior or cranial inferior or
caudal anterior or ventral posterior or
dorsal medial or medial and lateral
superficial and deep EPSA lateral and
contralateral the first of these
directional terms is superior and
inferior superior describes a structure
that is either at the top of the body or
closer to the top of the body than some
other structure one of the older terms
that sort of used interchangeably for
superior is cranial cranial technically
means at the head or closer to the head
so since we're standing up on two legs
superior and cranial will mean the same
thing this is not necessarily true if
you're an organism that walks on all
fours so an example for superior would
be the nose the nose would be described
as superior to the mouth next is
inferior inferior means at the bottom or
closer to the bottom it is also a common
in older texts and things like that to
hear people use caudal instead of in
fear
excuse me coddle coddle is sometimes it
used interchangeably with inferior
coddle means closer to the tail or your
tailbone so an example of something that
would be inferior is the chin to the
mouth you can describe the position of
the chin as being inferior to the mouth
because it's below the mouth closer to
the bottom or closer to your tail if you
want to use caudal ok our next set of
directional terms or anterior and
posterior just like we saw before
anterior and posterior have some other
terms that are used interchangeably
anterior means a front or closer to the
front the term that can be used
interchangeably with anterior is ventral
ventral technically means the belly or
closer to the belly ventral can only be
used interchangeably with anterior if
you walk on two legs because we walk on
two legs our belly is anterior however
if you are an animal that or organism
that walked on four legs like a cat for
example recognize that your your belly
would be facing the floor it would not
be facing the front
so in four-legged animals ventral and
anterior are not interchangeable but in
two legged animals like ourselves these
are interchangeable an example for
anterior would be to look at your shin
in your lower leg and the calf in your
lower leg so remember the shin is here
and the calf is back here so this shin
the front of your lower leg would be
anterior to the calf which is the back
of your lower leg the opposite of
anterior is posterior posterior means
back or closer to the back dorsal can
also be used interchangeably with
posterior because dorsal means spine are
closer to the spine again the same rule
applies as
for ventral dorsal only works
interchangeably from posterior if you
walk on two legs if you welcome four
legs dorsal actually points upward and
is not necessarily the same as posterior
again think of your cat the cat's
posterior is the cat's tail not the
cat's spine for posterior an example
would be the upper leg so if you look at
the upper laying the front the muscles
here in the front of the upper leg
people call the quads or the quadriceps
the muscles here in the back of the
upper leg people call the hamstrings so
the hamstrings are posterior to the
quads that would be an example I would
use the next set of directional terms
are medial and lateral
now to understand medial and lateral you
have to use a reference a reference
basically that would be a line that you
an imaginary line that you would draw
down the middle of the body this would
be what we call midline now and I drew
it in red on the screen here so a
structure that is medial is a structure
that would be closer to this midline
than some other structure so take the
nose for example the nose is right on
midline so you can describe the nose as
being medial to the eyes because the
nose is closer literally right on
midline closer to that midline then your
eyes are the opposite of medians lateral
lateral means further away from that
midline an example of lateral would be
the again the eyes and then this time
the ears the ears are actually lateral
to the eyes because your ears would be
further from that midline
then your eyes are the next set of
directional terms our proximal and
distal now there's a special rule for
using proximal and distal proximal and
distal are only going to be used for
limbs like arms and legs and tubes like
the digestive tube or blood vessels so
proximal and distal are used for limbs
and tubes because these are things that
have a beginning and an end
so proximal means closer to the
attachment or closer to the beginning so
if you're describing a limb the
beginning of the limb is the attachment
point so you would you would use
proximal when you describe something
that's closer to the attachment if
you're using a tube you would say closer
to the beginning so an example for
proximal would be to look at the elbow
and the wrist the elbow is proximal to
the wrist because your arm attaches to
your body at the shoulder the elbow is
closer to that attachment point than the
wrist is so the elbow is proximal distal
means further from the attachment point
or further from the beginning when
you're dealing with limbs you could say
that the elbow is distal to the shoulder
because the elbow is further from the
attachment point which is the shoulder
then then the shoulders now if I were to
describe examples of tubes you have to
kind of remember that your digestive
tract is essentially a tube that goes
from mouth to anus so if the mouth is
the beginning of that tube and then next
you would go from the mouth to the back
of your throat which is called the
pharynx and from the pharynx you would
go into the esophagus and from the
esophagus you go to the stump
from the stomach you would go to the
small intestine from the small intestine
you go to the large intestine and then
you would go from the large intestine to
the rectum and then to the anus so if
you follow that as your digestive tube
you could say that the mouth is proximal
to the esophagus because the mouth is
closer to the beginning of that tube
than the esophagus is using that same
tube you could say the stomach is distal
to the esophagus because the stomach is
further from the beginning of that tube
than the esophagus is so proximal and
distal are special therefore limbs and
tubes next set of directional terms are
superficial and deep superficial means
closer to the body surface and deep
means further from the body surface so
your most superficial organ of course is
going to be your skin right because your
skin is essentially the surface of the
body so you could use skin in our first
example skin is superficial – muscle
right because skin would be closer to
the surface than your muscle would be a
good way to think of superficial and
deep would be to think of what
structures a pin would pass through as
it pierces the surface of your body so
it will pierce your skin first and then
your muscle skin is superficial in most
cases particularly on your limbs an
example we could use for deep would be
bone bone is deep to muscle right if you
were to pierce far enough with that pin
you pierce through the muscle and you
would hit the bone okay because the bone
is further from the surface then excuse
me the Botes further from the surface
than the muscle is the final set of
directional terms our EPSA lateral and
contralateral
epsilon or refers to two or more
structures that are on the same side of
the body so an example would be the
right wrist and the right elbow the
right wrist on the right elbow are EPSA
lateral to each other because they are
on the same side of the body
the second term here is contralateral
contralateral means two or more
structures that are on the opposite side
of the body so the right wrist and the
left wrist are contralateral to each
other the previous slide has no
recording because it's just a table from
your textbook in would be nice for you
to go over those previous table that
table in the previous slide to see some
additional examples of the directional
terms but I have some directional term
practice questions here for you in the
final slide so let's go over them the
first one the nose is blank to the ear
so if you said that the nose is medial
to the ear that would probably be the
best answer though you could probably
also say that the nose would be anterior
to the ear but if it were me I would
pick medial your knuckles are blank to
the wrist so if you said that your
knuckles are distal to the wrist that
would be the most correct answer no
matter what the position of your arm
proximal and distal is usually the best
term to describe structures on limbs and
tubes okay so the knuckles are further
from the attachment point than your
wrist is so that your knuckles are
distal whether you're in the anatomical
position or not they're always distal
next the chest is blank
to the abdomen so when you think about
demand think of where your belly button
is so your chest is blank to the abdomen
if you guess that the chest is superior
to the abdomen then you'd be correct the
chest would be superior to the abdomen
next is the liver is blank to the skin
if you guess that the liver is deep to
the skin you would be correct since the
liver is an internal organ of basically
all of your internal organs will be deep
to the skin since the skin is the most
superficial organ finally the shoulder
blade is blank to the chest if you guess
that the shoulder blade is posterior to
the chest you would be correct because
your shoulder blades are on your back or
on the back of your your body whereas
your chest is in the front

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