The third semester takes place in the second academic year and it focuses on central and peripheral nervous system, organs of special senses and corresponding embryology.
Description of the general features of nervous tissue, the spinal cord and the brain stem.
Introduction to the fundamentals of neural development.
Fundamental concepts, organizational principles, structure, connectivity, and how these relate to function and behavior are considered, with a strong emphasis on the clinical application of "traditional" neuroanatomical knowledge.
The forebrain (cerebral hemispheres), the midbrain (amygdala, thalamus, hypothalamus, hippocampus, pituitary gland, pineal gland and crus cerebri), the brainstem/hindbrain (pons, medulla oblongata and cerebellum).
Characteristics of the grey matter (e.g. nuclei, ganglia, cerebellar and cerebral cortex and basal nuclei/ganglia) and white matter (association, commissural and projection fibers, and the corpus callosum).
Cortical topography: frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital lobes and the major sulci/landmarks that separate them. Description of the cerebral cortex in relation to its functions, namely: motor, sensory, visual, auditory, speech; memory and emotion, decision making, social behavior.
Describe the organization of the internal capsule.
Basal ganglia (the caudate nucleus, putamen, and globus pallidus, their relationship with each other and with the lateral ventricle and internal capsule).
Description of the cerebellar anatomy (anatomic division and evolutionary terms neocerebellum, paleocerebellum and pontocerebellum).
Description of the cerebellar cortex and nuclei, afferents, internal circuitry, efferents and blood supply.
Identify the major structures of the limbic system (limbic lobe, hypothalamus, hippocampus, amygdala.
Describe and identify the anatomic features of the hypothalamus, the efferent connections of the hypothalamus with the autonomic nervous system and compare neuroendocrine secretion and control in the anterior and posterior pituitary.
Description of the structure of the spinal cord, a typical spinal nerve and a reflex arc, and its relation to the vertebral column.
Spinal and dorsal column-medial lemnisci, trigeminal lemniscus (proprioception i.e., joint position, tactile discrimination, vibration sense and form recognition).
Motor tracts: pyramidal [the corticobulbar and corticospinal tracts) and extrapyramidal (i.e., reticulospinal, vestibulospinal, tectospinal, rubrospinal including the basal ganglia (caudate, putamen, and globus pallidus), and the subthalamic nucleus].
Description of the 12 cranial nerves and their major functions in relation to innervation.
Description of the general organization of the outer, middle and inner ear.
Description of the structure of the visual system: eye, eyelid, conjunctiva and lacrimal gland.
Particular importance is given to central nervous pathways and to the anatomical basis of the reflexes (Moro reflex, abdominal reflexes, myotatic, tendon and those involving cranial nerves like as pupillary light reflex, the lacrimal reflex , the cough reflex, sucking and swallowing reflexes, the gag reflex, salivation, accommodation and corneal reflexes, vestibulo-ocular reflex, baroreflex) that are critical for clinical diagnosis and also for the basic understanding of the principles of motor control.
Description of the structural differences between the three layers of meninges (dura, arachnoid and pia), their relationship to the brain and spinal cord and the ventricular system and the formation, circulation, drainage and role of cerebrospinal fluid.
Prerequisites for admission
Students must have got a basic knowledge of Cytology, Histology and Cellular Biology.
To take the oral exam, the student must have passed the exam of Histology and Microscopic Anatomy.
The course of anatomy takes place in a 6-year-degree course and it is organized in three semesters. Two semesters take place in the first academic year, the third in the second academic year.
- Lectures on concepts, anatomical organization, surface anatomy, sectional anatomy, variations. Lectures focus on a general introduction to anatomy and its terminology. A mixed topographical-systemic anatomy approach is applied to the limbs, head and neck, and to the organs of the thorax, abdomen, pelvis, and perineum (respiratory, endocrine, circulatory, gastrointestinal, and urogenital systems). Neuroanatomy is a fully developed unit.
- Use of plastic models in the anatomy class to show internal organ relationships and to allow students to repeatedly study a specimen. During these the students work in peer groups and are supported by the Anatomy teacher and by peer teaching or near-peer teaching assistants (i.e., medical students who have already passed the anatomy program, and are still in their medical school training). Although plastic models associated to low-fidelity, they teach three-dimensional comprehension and anatomical reasoning, by showing the spatial relationship of the structures, which strongly correspond to the human body.
- Video acquisitions during classic or laparoscopic surgery have been introduced to underline anatomical concepts and to transpose them into a clinical setting. Each video is followed by a discussion with the students involving surgeons, endoscopists and anatomy teacher.
- During the course, groups of students (five to eight students) are solicited to elaborate under anatomy teacher supervision a presentation on an anatomical topic relevant to lecture content and derived from an article featured in scientific literature, focused around both clinical and scientific problems and to present them as lecture to the rest of the class (i.e., power point presentation). Anatomy teacher supervised the elaboration of students' lectures, in order to provide an appropriate guidance and motivation to students on how to improve their performance (quality of the report, level and fluency of oral presentation and ability to carry out literature search).
- We have developed a dissection program that we carried out during the second semester. Students participate in small groups (three to four students) to dissection laboratory of selected animal organs (heart, kidney, lung, liver) under the supervision by fourth/fifth-year tutors, who have already passed the anatomy exam. Every dissection is preceded by a brief introduction drawn up by the tutors to get the attraction of the students on the critical anatomical features that have been given during the lectures. After this peer-teaching dissection, students performed a personal dissection on similar organs. To ensure continuity in the didactic activities, the same tutors are also involved in the exercitations on physical models.
- We have started a pilot study with a selected group of first and second-year medical students where they learn to explore and create 3D visceral organ reconstruction alongside various CT cross-sectional slices of the neck, thorax and abdomen to describe patient specific anatomy. During this pilot study, the students: 1) apply their basic anatomy knowledge to identify anatomical structures in the radiological image; 2) learn to use open-source software for imaging elaboration. Lastly, 3D scenes will be loaded in a Immersive Virtual Reality setting on an App that we have developed using head-mounted displays with tracker and coupled with a Smartphone.
- Anatomia del Gray - Le basi anatomiche per la pratica clinica - di Gray - Susan Stranding · 2017
- Trattato di Anatomia Umana e Anatomia Topografica - Anatomy Bag e Risorse Digitali su Piattaforma Virtual Campus di Anastasi et al, Ed 2019
- Lo sviluppo prenatale dell'uomo. Embriologia ad orientamento clinico (Italiano X Ed.) 2017 di Keith L. Moore, T. V. Persaud, Mark G. Torchia
- Neuroanatomia nel contesto clinico - Atlante Strutture, sezioni, sistemi e sindromi 9a Edizione americana, Autore/i Duane E. Haines, Edizione italiana a cura di Maurizio Vertemati
- Fitzgerald - Neuroanatomia con riferimenti funzionali e clinici (VII Ed), Mtui E., Gruener G., Dockery P.
- Netter Atlante di Anatomia Umana VI Ed, di Netter F.H.