Anatomical planes are used to describe cuts made through a cadaver in order to view structures exposed by the cuts. While a very large number of possible cuts could be made through a particular cadaver, three orthogonal (at right angles to one another) planes are most important. (Limbs are usually cut (transected) in only one plane, perpendicular to their long axis.)

View Plane Animations

Dorsal Plane:
A Dorsal Plane is parallel to the back [for: head, neck, trunk, tail].

Transverse Plane:
A Transverse Plane is perpendicular to the long axis of the body [head, neck, trunk, tail].

Sagittal Plane:
A Sagittal Plane divides the body into right/left parts [head, neck, trunk, tail].

Median Plane:
The Median Plane is a mid-sagittal plane that divides the body into left/right halves [head, neck, trunk, tail].

Limb Transections:
Limbs are generally cut by planes that are approximately transverse, relative to the long axis of the limb.

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