July 20, 2009

Study suggests few know much about anatomy

People interviewed for an anatomy study did no better overall than those surveyed 40 years ago for a similar project, British researchers said.

Researchers at King's College in London gave participants drawings of the body with different areas shaded in to suggest where organs were located. The participants then were asked which drawing showed the correct location of organs, USA Today reported Monday.

Of the 722 people participating in the study, 94 percent correctly located the intestines, 55.5 percent identified the heart and 27.1 percent found the kidneys, lead researcher John Weinman wrote in the journal BMC Family Practice.

Lacking a knowledge of anatomy harkens to earlier times when learning about the body was taboo for many, Jeffrey Laitman, president-elect of the American Association of Anatomists, said.

It's really very sad that in this day and age, when we know everything about Facebook accounts and can tell you everything about the iPhone, that people don't know where their kidneys are, Laitman said.