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Anatomical terminologies

Anatomical terminologies:

  • Anterior: front of the body
  • Posterior: the back of the body
  • Superior: towards the top
  • Inferior: towards the back
  • Medial: Towards the midline
  • Lateral: Away from the midline
  • Proximal: towards pelvis of body
  • Distal: away from the pelvis of body
  • Superficial: towards the surface of the body
  • Deep: away from the surface of the body

Position terminologies:

  • Supine: Lying on the back
  • Prone: lying on the front
  • Lateral: lying on the side either left or right
  • Left lateral: lying on the left side
  • Right lateral: lying on the right side
  • Lateral decubitus: the patient lies on one side
  • Extension: increase in the angle of joint
  • Flexion: decrease in angle of joint
  • Abduction: Movement of an extremity away from the midline
  • Adduction: Movement of a limb towards the midline
  • Internal rotation: rotation towards the midline
  • External rotation: rotation away from the midline

Projection terminologies:

  • Anteroposterior: the central ray passes through the anterior aspect of the body to the posterior aspect of the body.
  • Posteroanterior: the central ray passes through the posterior aspect of the body to the anterior aspect of the body.
  • Oblique: 45 degrees rotation

Planes of the human body

There are mainly three planes of the body used for plain film imaging and cross-sectional imaging. All three planes are mutually right-angled to each other.

1. Coronal plane: divides the body into anterior to posterior

2. Axial plane or transverse plane: divides the body into superior and inferior

3. Sagittal plane: divides the body into left and right part

Regions of the abdomen

There are nine regions of the abdomen:

1. The right hypochondrium region contains liver, gall bladder, right kidney, small intestine.

2. The left hypochondrium region contains spleen, colon, left kidney, and pancreas.

3. The epigastric region contains the stomach, duodenum, liver, pancreas, adrenal gland.

4. The left lumbar region contains gall bladder, liver, and right colon.

5. The right lumbar region contains a descending colon and left kidney.

6. The umbilical region contains the umbilicus, jejunum, ileum, and duodenum.

7. The right iliac region contains ilium and caecum.

8. The left iliac region contains descending colon and sigmoid colon

9. The hypogastric region contains urinary bladder, sigmoid colon.

Quadrants of the abdomen

There are four quadrants:

1. The right upper quadrant contains the right kidney, gall bladder, colon, and pancreas.

2. The left upper quadrant contains the stomach, left kidney, spleen, pancreas.

3. The right lower quadrant contains the appendix, colon, small intestine, ureter, major vein and artery to the right leg.

4. The left lower quadrant contains a colon, small intestine, major artery, and vein to the left leg.

Body cavities:

An empty space known as cavity human body cavity provides housing and protection to vital organs.

Human body cavities are divided into two major parts:

  1. Dorsal body cavity: it is located along the dorsal (posterior) surface of the human body. These are bones of the cranial portion of the skull and vertebral column. This is further divided into two parts:
  • Cranial cavity: the space inside the bony skull, it protects the brain. Eight fused cranial bones together form cranial cavity i.e. frontal, occipital, sphenoid, ethmoid, and two each of parietal and temporal bone. The capacity of an adult human cranial cavity is 1200-1700 cm3.
  • Spinal cavity: the spinal canal (or vertebral canal) is the space in the vertebrae through which the spinal cord passes. This canal is enclosed within the vertebral foramen of the vertebrae.
  1. Ventral body cavity: it is much longer than the dorsal body cavity. It contains all structures within the chest and abdomen i.e. visceral organs. It is divided by the diaphragm muscle into the upper thoracic cavity and the abdomen-pelvic cavity.
  • Thoracic cavity: the organ contains by the thoracic cavity is trachea, bronchi, lungs, esophagus, heart and great blood vessels, thymus gland, lymph nodes, and nerves.

The thoracic cavity contains a pleural cavity and pericardial cavity. The pleural cavity surrounded each lung and the pericardial cavity contains the heart.

  • Media sternum: it separates the lung into the left and right cavities of the thoracic cavity.
  • Abdomen-pelvic cavity: this consists of the abdominal and pelvic cavity. Organs situated in abdomen-pelvic are stomach, liver, spleen, gall bladder, kidneys, and most of the small and large intestine. It also contains urinary bladder and internal reproductive organs.

The abdominal cavity is the largest body cavity of the human body.

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