Getting back together after a break-up: Relationship advice for anatomists and surgeons

Roy Phitayakorn, Nirusha Lachman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The "surgeon-anatomist" was originally a single individual who self-pursued knowledge and understanding of anatomy as the foundation for successful surgical outcomes. However, recent advances in medical education have ironically led to the separation of anatomy and surgery. This physical and emotional "divorce" of anatomists and surgeons into separate individuals has created several critical educational issues for medical and surgical educators including a general lack of anatomical knowledge in medical students and misalignment of graduate medical education procedural specialty training with the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education Core Competencies and now the Next Accreditation System. There are numerous opportunities for anatomists and surgeons to work together to improve educational instruction of established difficult anatomical regions, procedural training, or even develop new techniques and procedures. Similarly, anatomists with specialized training in medical education would be invaluable partners to ensure that procedural assessments align with instructional technologies for truly longitudinal curricula that starts at the medical student level, but stops at the patient outcomes of attending surgeons. This mutually beneficial relationship would be similar to multidisciplinary care teams and current surgeon and PhD/EdD partnerships. The restoration of the relationship between anatomists and surgeons would be invaluable to surgical education and remains an exciting research opportunity. Clin. Anat. 28:931-934, 2015.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)931-934
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Anatomy
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • collaboration
  • graduate medical education
  • surgery education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Histology


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