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Lehigh Valley Orthopedic Institute Hosts Cadaver Lab Experience for Local High Schoolers

Students from Emmaus, Allentown Central Catholic get guided tour of the shoulder, elbow, wrist, knee and ankle

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Cadaver Lab Experience for Local High Schoolers

Students from Emmaus and Allentown Central Catholic high schools got an education not available in any of their textbooks on Monday (April 11) when surgeons from Lehigh Valley Orthopedic Institute hosted an orthopedic extremities cadaver lab experience with a focus on human joints.

Students from Emmaus High School are enrolled in the school’s Advanced Placement biology class, while those from Central Catholic were enrolled in various biology and anatomy classes and part of the school’s new Health Occupations Students of America chapter.

Orthopedic hand specialist Paul Sibley, DO, LVPG Orthopedics and Sports Medicine–1250 Cedar Crest, organized the cadaver lab experience. He said the idea grew from a smaller scale cadaver tutorial he ran before the COVID-19 pandemic with some students from Nazareth Area High School.  “It’s a big difference reading about human anatomy and then feeling it and visualizing it on a patient,” he said. “I didn’t have this option when I was in high school. The first cadaver I encountered was in medical school. For those considering any kind of health care career, this will give them a head start.”

Students rotated through six stations in the wet lab at the Venel Institute in Bethlehem, a bio-skills lab focusing on medical education and cadaver-based surgical training. Stations featured instruction on the knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist/hand, foot/ankle and suturing.

Sibley was assisted in the clinic by fellow Orthopedic Institute surgeons John Stapleton, DPM, Chief, Division of Podiatric Surgery, Neal Stansbury, MD, Gabriel Lewullis, MD, and Nicholas Slenker, MD. Adeena Woodard, PA-C, who works with Sibley, supervised a tutorial in the basics of suturing, demonstrating techniques on pieces of chicken. Students then tried their hand at suturing.

Orthopedic Institute surgeons helped students identify tendons, nerves and ligaments and demonstrated how the joints worked. They asked and answered many questions throughout the two-hour event.

Sibley said anatomy is the basis of all health careers, so Monday’s lab experience could serve as a springboard for students interested in any number of fields.

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