Donate your Body

by MSO

Most donated bodies go to medical schools where they used by students studying surgical methods. If you want your body given to research make a specific request.

Body donation is the donating of the whole body after death for medical research and examination. Formerly only offered to medical schools it has since expanded to include private programs. Body donation is a useful process for understanding the human body. Whole embalmed bodies are often used for research in anatomy and burial or cremation costs are covered by the institution afterwards, which takes a financial burden off of the family of the deceased.

Consent for body donation is usually given before death, though next of kin can provide it in the United States. Institutions are often inspected to prove legitimacy before they are allowed to accept bodies.

For a body to be suitable for donation it must not have had an autopsy performed and must be in condition such that it can be preserved for an extended period of time- possibly up to three years. A body is not eligible to be donated to medical school and donated for transplant: exceptions include cornea donation and some places that accept brains.

Some people, like plastination patent-holder Gunther von Hagens, have found creative ways to use donated cadavers. A four step process replaces body fats and water with a plastic resin that hardens and allows intricate body displays to be created.

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