Neuroanatomy and cadaver dissection in Italy: History, medicolegal issues, and neurosurgical perspectives

Paola Frati, Alessandro Frati, Maurizio Salvati, Silvia Marinozzi, Riccardo Frati, Luciana Rita Angeletti, Manolo Piccirilli, Eugenio Gaudio, Roberto Delfini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite the significant Italian tradition of important anatomical studies, an outdated law historically influenced by the Catholic church restricts the use of cadavers for teaching and scientific purposes. The object of the present paper was to trace the historical evolution of the Italian anatomical tradition, particularly neuroanatomical studies, in relation to the juridical regulations on the use of cadavers today. Special attention was paid to the opportunities offered to neurosurgery by using cadavers and to the scientific and social issues in neurosurgical training in the twenty-first century. Considering the new Common European Constitution, the authors advocate a political solution from the European community to improve the quality of training in the disciplines with a social impact such as neurosurgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)789-796
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2006


  • Cadaver dissection
  • History of neurosurgery
  • Neuroanatomy
  • Neurosurgical education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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