Home » What I've been up to » Week 7 at The Royal College of Surgeons

Week 7 at The Royal College of Surgeons

Outside of the Royal College of Surgeons. Image taken from http://nobelbiocare-eyearcourse.com/fgdp.html.

Outside of the Royal College of Surgeons. Image taken from http://nobelbiocare-eyearcourse.com/fgdp.html.

After a weeks holiday I’m back at the college sorting out bones! I am enjoying my time here volunteering – I now really need and want to find a paid job doing something similar. Oh well fingers crossed something will come up.

So what did we get up to today? Well basically more of the same stuff really – sorting out boxes of human bones and making a complete inventory of them. As we’ve been going we’ve made a note of potentially how useful each individual bone would be for teaching both surgeons and osteo-archaeologists. Today we decided to take this one step further by also sorting the bones in to boxes classified as poor, moderate and good condition, and then a final box for osteo-archs. Hopefully this will make the curators job easier in the future when it comes to identifying them.

In addition to the sorting the curator took us on a your of all of the store rooms that are used by the museums. This included both the Hunterian and Wellcome anatomy and pathology museum. As with most muss there was a wealth of objects and specimens in each store room. These ranged from wet specimens showing pathologies and abnormalities to paintings and historical surgical instruments.

As well of these objects there was of course a huge oteology collection which included both humans and animals. I could have spent hours in some of the store rooms just looking over the bones. Two particular collections were of interest to me – the primates and the infant collections. I didn’t actually get to see any of the primates but there were boxes and boxes of skulls from a variety of species and I would have loved to peer into some of them! The second collection consisted of infant and neo-natal specimens. Most of them showed some example of pathology and again I would have loved to spent some time with them. I don’t know why but ever since starting my studies in osteology I have always been interested in the infant and juvenile skeleton. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that at some point I might be able to work with some of these amazing specimens.

I’m so lucky to be volunteering at the college and I’m really enjoying it. I think that would be my ideal job – working with the vast collections. It would combine everything I like: bones, pathology, research and increasing my knowledge in different areas. Maybe if I’m lucky…?!

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