Human Anatomy at Colby

Ariel Oppong: A Memorable Aspect of Anatomy and Physiology- ART!

February 24th, 2015 · Comments Off on Ariel Oppong: A Memorable Aspect of Anatomy and Physiology- ART!

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During the first week of class we made a trip to the Colby Art Musuem. Since the Art museum opened during the summer of 2013 I had only actually participated in one small tour. I feel like a version of myself enjoys art and objectively recognizes its value but a version of myself that is more present on campus does not really have the time or make the efforts to appreciate art. Thus, I was happy we went.

While we were there we completed a scavenger hunt that required our knowledge of different human muscles to find the art pieces that matched with eight different short stories and descriptions. We were allowed to work together or to work in groups of three or less.


After we completed the scavenger hunt we were asked to find a piece of artwork within the museum and to create our own question/description of the artwork with the central usage of a certain muscle being used by the characters or subjects in the artwork. For my question I decided to make focus on a 1997 piece of artwork called Leader by American artist, Betye Irene Saar. Born in Los Angeles, California in 1926, she has been known to incorporate collage and assemblages into statements of political and social protest.


In this picture, a strong woman is standing and maintaining the trunk of her body in a firm position. This position represents the woman’s strong presence in the family dynamic of families of this ancestry. Because of the importance of her stance as a symbol for other aspects of her womanhood, I decided to focus my piece on a large muscle that helps the main subject hold that stance: the gluteus Maximus.


The gluteus maximus is the largest and most superficial of the three-gluteal muscles (including the gluteus medius and the gluteus minimus). The gluteus maximus is proximally attached to the outer surface of the ilium and is distally attached to the superior and lateral surfaces of the greater trochanter of femur. As the largest and strongest muscle in the body, the gluteus maximus is both important in being responsible for the movement of the hip bone and thigh but in also in creating a shape to the human body and creating the appearance of hips. I really enjoyed learning more about Betye Saar, her work, and her work’s impact on general society. At first our student created scavenger hunt questions were supposed to be consolidated into a new list of synopsis for high school students to look at when they came to visit Colby early the following week. However, due to some logistical issue the students were not able to complete the scavenger hunt. Instead of completing a hunt, the high school students completed a heart dissection with us, The day prior to the students’ arrival on campus we had completed an almost trial run like heart dissections on our own in the lab. I enjoyed learning on my own and then showing the high school students different anatomical parts of the heart because it allowed me to see what aspects of the lessons before I was and was not retaining.



Tags: Bi265j · Special Activities

Ariel Oppong: Flipped Lectures Were a Plus for Me

February 23rd, 2015 · Comments Off on Ariel Oppong: Flipped Lectures Were a Plus for Me

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I am pre med and am also interested in public health especially decreasing health disparities. With these future career goals in mind taking a class such as Anatomy and Physiology could be a beneficial course choice. For the field of medicine Anatomy and Physiology is not a pre-requisite, however once a student matriculates into a medical program he or she will have to take anatomy and physiology to graduate. Thus, taking the course now could be advantageous to my schooling in the future.


A lot of past students warned me earlier that this course was very hard and time consuming, but I was still unsure if I might need it in the future so I decided to give it a chance. The first couple days were rough to say the least. We had three quizzes and a lab exam within the first week. Class was almost four hours long from 9-1pm on most days. We had lecture first and then lab for the first week and then lab first and then lecture after for the last three weeks. We were asked to sleep for 8 hours a night, to eat a balacnced diet and to try to exercise as well as complete the class at an optimal level. Prof. Klepach thought it was very much feasible but by requiring that we follow the lifestyle and do well in school what he was really encouraging was for us to find a way to study more effectively, learn better time management skills, and take our well –being seriously. For the most part I was able to exercise more regularly and eat three balanced meals but I still felt stressed and was not able to get eight hours of sleep every night.


My lack of sleep was probably at first due to the fact that we were operating on a flipped lecture style. In flipped lecture the students and I would watch videos of pre-taped lectures and pre-taped lab lectures prior to class. Then the class would be operated with the assumption that we had done our part and had done the pre-work. During class we would complete group exercises including an overview of questions we individually came to class with. Afterwards Prof. Klepach would give us group quizzes and reviews. I found out that I really like flipped lectures. As someone that does not really learn very well by auditory means I was really happy to be provided with the pre-taped lectures because it provided me with the option to play back things that I might not have caught the first time. Moreover, the flipped lecture style allowed me to reinforce what I knew or did not know with the in class group quizzes and daily individual quizzes.


I plan to try to integrate some of the components of flipped lectures into my spring semester. I am already a junior but it seems like there are some study techniques that I have to start implementing on a daily basis. For an example I am going to try to spend more of my evenings prepping for the upcoming class instead of reviewing material that I had previously put off.

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Ariel Oppong: What is the Best Way to Study?

February 23rd, 2015 · Comments Off on Ariel Oppong: What is the Best Way to Study?

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For Intro Into Anatomy and Physiology we had to complete both lectures and a laboratory component. For the lab part we were provided with at least an hour and a half to review the components of various models and structures displayed around the microbiology laboratory. During the first week I was excited to see the models and to see how much I remembered from the Anatomy and Physiology class I took my junior year in high school (about four years ago). The first day I realized that what I had retained from my past Anatomy and Physiology class was more broad physiology than college- level anatomy details. We had our first lab exam on day four of the class. I was shocked to find out we would have an exam so early but I do not think that it really hit me until the first Tuesday night. That night I actually came to terms with the fact that I only had one more night before the exam. Panic definitely was a feeing that immediately surfaced. I had never taken a pervious class with Prof. Klepach and I did not know how he tested so I was really worried.


Nonetheless, I had to start studying something or I was going to feel defeated before I even started. My fried Jay and I really focused our studying on the various parts of the human skull. We spent about two hours in total on that skull and we were pretty good after numerous quizzes and checks with the professor. The only issue is that by spending so much time on the skull we really did not get to study the other models as in depth. Even in the moment, I knew I was taking a risk by focusing on that body part for so long. I was just hopping that at least five or so questions would come from that region so I could reap the benefits of my studying. Haha I guess I was hopeful. My Wednesday a lot of people were over the amount of work. I think we lost about 7 people in the first week. But I was intent on finishing the class.


But was I studying appropriately? I really was not sure. In addition, I finished the previous semester pretty late, December 22nd , so when JanPlan January 5th, I was only home for around 10 days and I was pretty tired of school already. Was I putting in the appropriate amount of time? On average I was studying for at least four hours a night if you included watching the videos or podcasts for the next class, still it felt like that was the bare minimum. My first practical was really supposed to show me where my study skills were improving, okay at or lacking.


Whoa was the first lab practical hard! I did not actually study even close to the amount I needed to study in order to do well. Slacking off would be an understatement. I did poorly on the exam and the answers I got right were mainly give –away or identifications that I probably could have made even as a high school student. Disappointment was my main feeling during and after the exam. I just felt like with an exam like the lab practical- your performance is in direct correlation with your study skills. All the answers are predetermined and you just have to recognize the anatomy and regurgitate the medical terminology.


Basically my first lab practical taught me a hard lesson about slacking off plus it motivated me to try new methods and lastly it gave me a starting place that was so low that for my second exam I had no where to go but up.


Tags: Bi265j · Lab

Grand Rounds: Atypical Hyperplasia of the Breast

January 28th, 2015 · Comments Off on Grand Rounds: Atypical Hyperplasia of the Breast

Ariel Oppong, Jay Lee, Rebecca Gray

Grand Rounds _Hyperplasia powerpoint pdf

Grand Rounds Synopsis- Atypical Hyperplasia of the Breast

Hyperplasia occurs when an organ or tissue becomes enlarged because the cells within it begin to proliferate more quickly than usual, resulting in an abnormally large population of cells in one, concentrated area of the body. We categorize hyperplasia in two ways: (1) “simple” or “complex”, and (2) “usual” or “atypical”. The research we will explore focuses on complex, atypical hyperplasia. This refers to hyperplastic tissue that both engorges the tissue around it and contains deformed, non-uniform cells.

Hyperplasia of the breast falls into two categories: lobular and ductal. Within the fatty tissue of a healthy breast are mammary glands, and within those lie lobular clusters of alveoli. The cuboidal cells that line these alveoli secrete milk, which moves through milk ducts to reach the nipple, where it is excreted during breastfeeding. When hyperplasia occurs in the breast, it is usually found in either the lobules of the mammary gland or the associated milk ducts.

Usually, hyperplasia within the breast is relatively harmless. Because change in breast size and shape occurs normally over the course of a woman’s life, her body is designed to handle minor engorgement of the tissue there. This condition becomes concerning when hyperplastic cells within the breast become atypical; this is characterized by misshapen cytosol, nuclei, and membrane organization. When this occurs, the hyperplastic cells take on characteristics startlingly similar to those of tumors: they are clumped, proliferating rapidly, and lacking functionality. For this reason, atypical hyperplasia of the breast is linked with breast cancer and considered premalignant.

Usually if a lump or an abnormal mass is found during a female’s mammogram then a health professional will usually suggest a biopsy. During the biopsy tissue cells are removed for analysis by a pathologist.  If the pathologist can not make a definite decision as to if the excision is cancerous or not.

A 2014 report published by the New England Journal of Medicine published a new meta-analysis of the associated risk of breast cancer associated with atypical hyperplasia. The conclusions of the meta-analysis suggested that a women with a atypical hyperplasia has a least a 30% increased risk of having breast cancer within a 25 year follow-up. Due to this new information we ( the anatomy group) as well as the authors of this newly published report agree that there needs to be a reform in women’s health policies so that women are more aware of their risk and are also more informed about some preventative medicine including screening techniques, and treatment or surgical options if signs of breast cancer are already apparent.

Some of the current commonly used treatments are different types of SERMS. SERMS are selective estrogen receptor modulators. The most widely used antiestrogen for management of breast cancer is Tamoxifen. However, prolonged use of Tamoxifen does increase one’s risk for endometrial (uterine) cancer.

Another important issue is the health disparities in breast cancer diagnosis, quality of treatment, and mortality rates among different socio-economic groups, geographic locations, the unemployed and employed, and racial groups. Based of off data from the 2014 Racial Disparity in Breast Cancer Mortality Study in areas such as Memphis, Tennessee, black women are more than two times more likely to die of breast cancer than their white counterparts. Overall, our research indicates that we as a country need to implement new screening methods, need to promote more education initiatives, need to enact new policies to decrease health disparities, and need to stress the powerful conclusions that meta-analysis provide.


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