And below we room with component two that our overview on the things you should learn prior to you dive into the meaty ingredient of A&P, specifically how to talk about the body. In ours previous post, we disputed anatomical position and also directional terms. In this post, we’re walking to take a look in ~ planes and cavities.

You are watching: Body parts close to the midsagittal plane are called

Planes: since who claimed anatomy didn’t call for an imagination?

No, no the sort that paris you end oceans and also have advantageous people in uniforms the ply you v bags of stale peanuts. The other kind! The arts kind, or in an ext technical state the area of a two-dimensional surface. When provided in conjunction through anatomy, plane are offered to divide the body and also its parts, which allows you to explain the views from which you examine the body. If girlfriend look at your A&P textbook, you’ll most likely an alert that a an excellent number the the pictures and diagrams exploit planes.

Here is a list of typically used planes:

Frontal (Coronal) plane

Divides the body right into anterior (front) and also posterior (back) portions

Transverse plane

Divides the body into superior (upper) and inferior (lower) portions

Sagittal plane

Vertical plane that divides the body into right and also left sides.

Midsagittal plane

Divides the body at midline right into equal right and also left sides.

Oblique plane

Divides the body at one angle.

Of course, in reality, the planes supplied are completely imaginary, but they are a valuable visual in terms of describing a view.

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Using a frontal aircraft to bisect the body lengthwise, we’re able to describe specific areas that would not be easily visible or accessible if us used an additional plane.


The transverse airplane bisects the mind horizontally, enabling for a exceptional view.

Cavities: since things must be kept somewhere.

A concept easier to understand than planes and also directional is human body cavities, as they space a physics thing. As soon as you hear words “cavity,” no doubt friend think that the sort in your teeth that are resulted in by plaque. A cavity, in any kind of capacity, is a hollow place. In her teeth, the a hollow little in the difficult body. In the human body itself, the is a hollow place usually filled v organs, nerves, vessels, and also muscles.

Here space the body’s cavities:

Cranial cavity

Formed by the cranial bones and also holds the brain

Vertebral canal

Formed by the vertebrae and also contains the spinal cord

Thoracic cavity

Formed by the thoracic cage, muscles of the chest, sternum, and also the thoracic vertebrae; has the pleural, pericardial, and also mediastinum cavities

Pleural cavity

Fluid-filled spaces that surround both lungs

Pericardial cavity

Fluid-filled room that surrounds the heart; the serous membrane that the pericardial cavity is the pericardium


Central part of the thoracic cavity; has the heart, thymus, trachea, several major blood vessels, and esophagus

Abdominal cavity

Contains liver, stomach, spleen, small intestine, and most of the large intestine; the serous membrane that the abdominal muscle cavity is the peritoneum

Pelvic cavity

Contains bladder, several of the huge intestine, and also reproductive offal (internal)

The cranial cavity. Image from human being Anatomy Atlas.

The thoracic cavity. Image from human Anatomy Atlas.

The ab cavity. Image from human Anatomy Atlas.

The pelvic cavity. Picture from human Anatomy Atlas.

This article was initially published in 2013. The has due to the fact that been to update with new body cavity photos from person Anatomy Atlas 2019.

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