Anatomy is central in medicine. It is one of the key knowledge areas that separate doctors from the general population. All doctors, regardless of specialty are required to have a decent knowledge of human anatomy in order to practice effectively.
The introduction of the iPad ushered in a new era of anatomy learning with the introduction of detailed 3D models and vast amounts of information contained on a device no bigger than a paper notebook. Over the past few months, iMedicalApps has evaluated countless major anatomy apps currently available in the App Store to determine which ones are the best.
These applications were evaluated based on their content, ease of use, quality of anatomical illustrations and overall benefit to practicing physicians. A summary of each application is covered below including our choice for the best anatomy app.
Having comprehensively used these apps over a number of weeks, it is clear that there are a number of key apps which are ideal for use by practicing physicians and medical students alike. These are Pocket Body, Visible Body, Essentials Of Clinical Anatomy, and the NOVA Series.
Pocket Body features a complete human model which can be viewed from 4 different orientations and 9 layers ranging from skin to skeleton. It has an intuitive user interface and contains a vast amount of learning material. The information supplied with each pin contains related information such as origin, insertion, innervation, clinical correlations as well as an ability to add individual notes. Pocket Body is completed by the addition of a robust quiz function and search function which means anatomical structures can be quickly located.
Visible Body is a complete, fully interactive 3D rendering of the human body and may one day replace traditional texts. Visible body contains a beautiful and detailed 3D rendering of the entire human body which is complemented by the ability to fully manipulate the model and search for structures. Text explanations of each structure reduces the need to refer to another book for detailed information although there is limited clinical information. The level of detail is extraordinarily high although there complex nuances such as bone landmarks are occasionally absent.
One of the major strengths of this app is the ability to illustrate certain aspects of anatomy using a combination of clever shading and model selection. Selecting a structure will highlight it making it easy to see where the particular structure lies. Visible Body is completed by the addition of a search function which quickly finds and highlights the relevant anatomical structure. Overall, Visible Body is an excellent app at an unbelievably competitive price.
Essentials of Clinical Anatomy By Inkling
Price: $64.99 with individual chapters available from $9.99
Essentials of Clinical Anatomy by Moore et al. is a renowned gross anatomy textbook which combines detailed anatomical information with a host of clinically relevant information. Inkling has successfully ported this textbook into an interactive format that combines a range of media, quizzes, high resolution images with a social dynamic to create a unique anatomical learning environment. While this book is designed for medical students who are learning the basics of clinical anatomy, it will definitely offer some use to healthcare professionals of all levels. We have covered some of the features offered in Inklings textbooks and all these are effectively implemented into Essentials of Clinical Anatomy.
The NOVA Series Collection
Price: Varies from $10-20 per app
3D4Medical.com’s collection of applications based on their NOVA system have gained a number of positive reviews on this site. Apps such as Muscle System Pro II and Brain Pro contain detailed 3 dimensional models that can be fully manipulated and searched using a combination of unique touch gestures to remove layers. The NOVA series contains apps pertaining to every major aspect of anatomy such as Skeletal System, Muscles System, Nervous System, Urinary System and so on.
While each of these apps obviously has individual uses, it is necessary to purchase the complete set if you are looking for a complete anatomy set. The NOVA series is generally easy to use and is complemented by the quiz function and search functions. It is also useful to be able to add your own pins to relevant areas.