Fun Fact: axis

Posted by Outlander Anatomist | Fun Facts

example of axis in human anatomy

Starz episode 313 Eye of the Storm

Anatomy def: The axis is the second cervical (C2) vertebra, situated near the top of spine but below the atlas (C1 vertebra). As the head rotates from side-to-side, skull and C1 pivot as a single unit around the axis.

Outlander def: Mistress Abernathy didna see Claire grab that machete! Else, her head would have twisted wildly from side-to-side, as in NO-NO (she is a twisted sista <G>)!  Claire, the surgeon, kens proper use of a blade. Here, “off with her head” takes on a whole new meaning!

Learn about the axis vertebra in Anatomy Lesson #53, Dr. Abernathy Meets Pretty Lady and also in Anatomy Lesson #12, Claire’s Neck or The Ivory Tower.

Read about the axis vertebra in Voyager book. Yes, Herself explains that a dull blade was used to hack through segments of the axis, removing pretty lady’s head! Here in Dr. Abernathy ’s office:

The wide body of the axis had a deep gouge; the posterior zygapophysis had broken clean off, and the fracture plane went completely through the centrum of the bone.

Joe’s finger moved over the line of the fracture plane. “See here? The bone’s not just cracked, it’s gone right there. Somebody tried to cut this lady’s head clean off. With a dull blade,” he concluded with relish. 

See Claire cleave off the witch’s head at the axis in Starz episode 313, Eye of the Storm. Two hundred years in the future, Claire and Geillis will meet again – when Mistress Abernathy is nothing more than “dem bones!”

A deeply grateful,

Outlander Anatomist

Fun Face: Gluteus Maximus

Posted by Outlander Anatomist | Fun Facts

example of gluteus maximus from Outlander TV show

Starz episode 312 The Bakra 

Anatomy def: Gluteus maximus is the most superficial muscle of each rump cheek.  Buttock contour is underpinned by three gluteal muscles (the glutes) of which gluteus maximus is largest and greatest. The extremely important Gluteus maximus::

  • extends the thigh backward
  • rotates the thigh outward
  • maintains the trunk in an upright position

Outlander def: Mistress Abernathy’s sensuous curve compels Ian’s horrified gaze as she washes away the gout of goat’s blood! Gluteus maximus underlies that seductive right buttock. He may be no a virgin, but wee Ian is petrified – the Bakra is not fair Brighidat of the print shop (nor Mary of Voyager book)! Yikes!

The Blood Bath! Let’s momentarily diverge from this Fun Fact to ask, could Geillis really bathe in a font filled with goat’s blood? Well, scientifically speaking, it depends.

  • No, not if the blood went directly from goats to the font – it would quickly clot leaving Geillis to soak in blood pudding!
  • Yes, if salt or vinegar were added to the blood, as these culinary anticoagulants likely rest in the cupboards of Rose Hall!
  • The cost? Staggering! It would take 169.5, 70-pound goats to produce 100 gallons (303 liters) of blood and her sunken tub is a big ‘un!  That’s a huge herd to sacrifice – Annekje Johansen would croak, not to mention Father Fogden! Meh!

Now, back to our Fun Fact!

Learn about gluteus maximus in Anatomy Lesson #1: Jamie’s Tush or Bottom’s Up!. Yes, the very first anatomy lesson published in October 2014! Jamie’s bottom including his gluteus maximus are admired from a purely scientific perspective! 

Read about buttocks in Voyager book. Turns out, buttocks are Herself’s fav body parts to describe! Grand choice, Diana! <G>

He was naked, his back turned to me as he stood in front of the chamber pot he had just pulled from its resting place beneath the washstand. I admired the squared roundness of his buttocks, the small muscular hollow that dented each one, and their pale vulnerability.

See Mistress Abernathy’s gluteus maximus form the lovely contour of her right buttock in Starz episode 312, The Bakra!

A deeply grateful,

Outlander Anatomist

Fun Fact: lacerate

Posted by Outlander Anatomist | Fun Facts

image of a laceration being stituced up

Starz episode 311, Uncharted

Anatomy def: Lacerate means to gash, slash, tear, rip, rend, shred, scratch or score the skin (or other organs) – owie!

Outlander def: Claire’s mad dash-gash!  Rushing through the tropical forest to find Jamie, she snags her arm on a very large plant spike and, gah!  

Mr. Willoughby to the rescue wielding needle and thread, presumably designed to mend sails. That is one mighty big needle, Yi Tien Cho!  😳 Never-the-less, he carefully and tidily closes Claire’s laceration (n), stemming further blood loss. Nice work, Mr. W! Excellent special effects, too!

Learn about lacerations in Anatomy Lesson #35, Outlander Owies! – Part One. Used precisely, lacerate means to tear – the leaving somewhat ragged wound margins. Incision means to slice with a sharp edge (e.g. blade), which leave sharp edges to the wound. Closing an incision usually leaves a thinner scar.

Read about Claire’s dramatic arm gash in Voyager book! Understand, there is much more to Claire’s wound story than TV time allows. What caused Claire’s laceration? I urge you to read the book for all the nitty-gritty! Here, Herself grips our imaginations, yet again:

“Jamie!” I clutched at his shoulder, my vision going white at the edges. “You aren’t all right—look, you’re bleeding!” … “My God!” said his frightened voice, out of the whirling blackness. “It’s no my blood, Sassenach, it’s yours!”

… “What happened?” I asked.

“Ye’ve a bone-deep slash down your arm from oxter to elbow, and had I not got a cloth round it in time, ye’d be feeding the sharks this minute!”

It was a long, clean-edged slash, running at a slight angle across the front of my biceps, from the shoulder to an inch or so above the elbow joint. And while I couldn’t actually see the bone of my humerus, it was without doubt a very deep wound, gaping widely at the edges.

Jamie was holding one of my curved suture needles and a length of sterilized cat-gut, … It was Mr. Willoughby who intervened, quietly taking the needle from Jamie’s hands. “I can do this,” he said, in tones of authority.

A wee bit later after some yummy turtle soup laced with sherry <G>, TV Claire tells Jamie that the penicillin she later injects into her thigh would not have been useful on the Porpoise because, too many men and “that antibiotic wouldn’t work against typhoid.”

 Just so you ken, years ago, penicillin was used to successfully treat typhoid, although today, it is no longer used for this purpose, having been replaced with other antibiotics. Herself got it right in Voyager book! Yup, yet again!

I thought I had resigned myself to the realities of this time, but knowing—even as I held the twitching body of an eighteen-year-old seaman as his bowels dissolved in blood and water—that penicillin would have saved most of them, and I had none, was galling as an ulcer, eating at my soul.

The box of syringes and ampules had been left behind on the Artemis, in the pocket of my spare skirt. If I had had it, I could not have used it. If I had used it, I could have saved no more than one or two. But even knowing that, I raged at the futility of it all, clenching my teeth until my jaw ached as I went from man to man, armed with nothing but boiled milk and biscuit, and my two empty hands.

See the Chinese poet deftly close Clair’s gaping wound in Starz episode 311, Uncharted. A civilized and truly gifted man!

A deeply grateful,

Outlandish Anatomist