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A lesson from the heart

Heart-shaped chocolates, cushions and all manner of lovey-dovey gifts are adorning the shelves in readiness for Valentine’s Day.  But for some would-be doctors at Warwick Medical School, they are about to get their hands on the real thing – a human heart.

The students get to see a real human heart which has been ‘plastinated’ or expertly treated to preserve every tiny vein and valve to become a valuable teaching resource as part of their clinical anatomy training.

Peter Abrahams, Professor of Clinical Anatomy, explained:  “This plastinated heart is the next best thing to examining a living organ.  Students can handle and study it to understand how the valves and muscles work and is a tremendous aid for their learning.”

The heart is one of a number of specimens the Medical School has.  Others include a complete arm from shoulder to hand and a thorax including lungs and rib cage.

“The lecture room is always full when it’s time to study the plastinated specimens,” he added.

Click here to see Professor Abrahams' video of the heart.


For further information contact Professor Abrahams on 07703 498553 or contact Kate Cox in the Communications office on +44 (0)2476 574255/150483, m:+44 (0)7920 531221 or


Plastinated heart