2Anatomical PositionAnatomical position – the subject stands erect facing the observer, with the head level and the eyes facing forward. The feet are flat on the floor and directed forward, and the arms are at the sides with the palms turned forward.
3Directional TermsSuperior (cephalic/cranial)– Toward the head; upper part of structureInferior (caudal) – Away from the head; lower part of structure
4Directional TermsAnterior (ventral) – Nearer to or at the front of the bodyPosterior (dorsal) – Nearer to or at the back of the body
5Directional Terms Medial – Nearer to the midline or midsagittal plane Lateral – Farther from the midline or midsagittal plane
6Directional TermsProximal – Nearer to the attachment of a limb to the trunk; nearer to the point of originDistal – Farther from the attachment of a limb to the trunk; farther from the point of origin
7Planes and SectionsSagittal Plane – Vertical plane that divides the body or organ into right and left sides.Midsagittal plane – equal right and left halvesParasagittal plane – unequal right and left halves
8Frontal Plane (coronal) – divides the body or an organ into anterior and posterior portions.
9Transverse Plane – divides the body or organ into superior and inferior portions.
11Body CavitiesSpaces within the body that contain, protect, separate, and support internal organs are called Body Cavities. The two principal cavities are the dorsal and ventral body cavities.
12Dorsal CavityThe dorsal body cavity is located near the dorsal surface of the body.Cranial cavity: formed by cranial bones and contains brain and its coverings.Vertebral cavity: formed by vertebral column and contains spinal cord and the beginnings of spinal nerves.
14Ventral CavityThe ventral body cavity is located on the ventral aspect of the body and contains organs collectively called viscera. Contains two main subdivisions: Thoracic (upper) – contains lungs and heart Abdominopelvic (lower) – contains stomach, liver, intestines, pancreas, kidneys, reproductive organs, etc.
15Thoracic cavityThoracic – chest cavity; separated from the abdominal cavity by diaphragmPleural (right and left) – each contains small amount of fluid and one lungPericardial – fluid filled space the surrounds heartMediastinum – medial to the lungs; extends from the sternum to the vertebral column and from the neck to the diaphragm; contains heart, esophagus, trachea, and several large blood vessels.
17Abdominopelvic Cavity The abdominopelvic cavity is also divided into two regions, although no wall separates them:Abdominal cavity (upper): contains the stomach, spleen, gall bladder, liver, small intestine, and most of the large intestinePelvic cavity (lower): contains the urinary bladder, portions of the large intestine, and internal reproductive organs.
18Abdominal QuadrantsThe quadrant designation is used to locate the site of pain, a mass, or some other abnormality.