Anatomy is the branch of biology that is the consideration of the structure of living things.
It is a general term that can include human anatomy, animal anatomy (zootomy) and plant anatomy (phytotomy).
In some of its facets anatomy is closely related to embryology, comparative anatomy and comparative embryology, through common roots in evolution.
Anatomy is subdivided into gross anatomy (or macroscopic anatomy) and microscopic anatomy.
Gross anatomy is the study of anatomical structures that can be seen by unaided vision.
Microscopic anatomy is the study of minute anatomical structures assisted with microscopes, which includes histology (the study of the organization of tissues), and cytology (the study of cells).
Anatomy should not be confused with anatomical pathology (also called morbid anatomy or histopathology), which is the study of the gross and microscopic appearances of diseased organs.
Human anatomy, including gross human anatomy and histology, is primarily the scientific study of the morphology of the adult human body.
Generally, students of certain biological sciences, paramedics, physiotherapists, nurses and medical students learn gross anatomy and microscopic anatomy from anatomical models, skeletons, textbooks, diagrams, photographs, lectures and tutorials.
The study of microscopic anatomy (or histology) can be aided by practical experience examining histological preparations (or slides) under a microscope; and in addition, medical students generally also learn gross anatomy with practical experience of dissection and inspection of cadavers (dead human bodies).
Human anatomy, physiology and biochemistry are complementary basic medical sciences, which are generally taught to medical students in their first year at medical school.
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