GRAY’S Anatomy or GREY’S Anatomy

Gray's Anatomy

is a medical book first published in 1858,
the 20th edition of the same

was published in 1918.

The edition of Gray’s Anatomy of the Human Body features 1,247 vibrant engravings—many in color—from the classic 1918 publication, as well as a subject index with 13,000 entries ranging from the Antrum of Highmore to the Zonule of Zinn.

The English anatomist Henry Gray was born in 1827. He studied the development of the endocrine glands and spleen and in 1853 was appointed Lecturer on Anatomy at St. George’s Hospital Medical School in London. In 1855 he approached his colleague Dr Henry Vandyke Carter with his idea to produce an anatomy text book for medical students. His death came just 3 years after the publication of his Anatomy Descriptive and Surgical.

Henry Gray (1827–1861) was an English anatomist and surgeon and also elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) at the young age of 25. In 1858 Gray published the first edition of his Anatomy, which covered 750 pages and contained 363 figures. He had the good fortune of securing the help of his friend Dr. H V Vandyke Carter, a skilled draughtsman and formerly a demonstrator of anatomy at St. George’s Hospital. Carter made the drawings from which the engravings were executed, and the success of the book was, in the first instance, undoubtedly due in no small measure to the excellence of its illustrations. This edition was dictated to Sir Benjamin Collins Brodie, Bart, FRS, DCL. A second edition was prepared by Gray and published in 1860.

He held successively the posts of demonstrator of Anatomy, curator of the museum, and Lecturer of Anatomy at St. George’s Hospital, and was in 1861 a candidate for the post of assistant surgeon. Unfortunately, he was struck down by an attack of confluent smallpox, which he contracted while looking after a nephew who was suffering from that disease and died at the early age of thirty-four. (Wikipedia)

Gray’s Anatomy has been an international bestseller for 100 years; its appeal is not only to physicians and students, but to artists and the medically curious. As the new Introduction by Dr. Crocco states: “Every living physician today has been exposed to Gray’s Anatomy and nearly everyone has used it. It was Gray’s Anatomy that occupied most of the embryonic physician’s waking hours, whether at home or at the side of his cadaver. “There have been many imitations, but few real competitors. There have been dissection manuals and pictorial atlases brilliantly illustrated with exquisite photographs. There have been synopses of anatomy and there have been monographs on various regions of the body. However, there is only one Gray’s Anatomy. (Random House Publishers)


will be on its fourth season this autumn. Season one began airing March 27, 2005 and ended on May 22, 2005. The first season was shortened by the network to nine episodes instead of 14. (The original season finale was “Bring the Pain.”)

Meredith Grey, daughter of the once-renowned surgeon Ellis Grey, becomes an intern at the Seattle Grace Hospital. She meets fellow interns Cristina Yang, Isobel “Izzie” Stevens, and George O’Malley who will be her closest friends during the intern program. Other characters include Dr. Miranda Bailey, who is nicknamed “The Nazi” due to her “tough love” capability; Alex Karev, another intern who is not very popular with the other interns (especially Izzie); and renowned surgeons Dr. Derek Shepherd and Dr. Preston Burke.

The chief of surgery is Richard Webber, who was once more than close friends with Meredith’s mother. The season chronicles the first few months of the intern program and the day-to-day life of a surgical intern. Recurring plots include Meredith’s battle to keep her mother’s Alzheimer’s disease a secret and her relationship with Dr. Shepherd. Others include George’s infatuation with Meredith and a power struggle between Dr. Burke and Dr. Shepherd in the hospital. The season’s end introduces Kate Walsh as Dr. Addison Montgomery-Shepherd, Derek’s estranged wife. – Yes, occasionally, I do watch this series, though, I prefer ER of ‘medical series’ on television. (Wikipedia)

Nu, which one are You for, Gray’s Anatomy or Grey’s Anatomy?

Tis for now. Rii xx


I have a friend whose friend is a biology professor. Her students think Gray’s Anatomy is a book of scripts for Grey’s Anatomy!! Bright bunch, eh?

Chernobyl 21-years On

Candle in the dark

The accident that occurred at Chernobyl on 26th April 1986 was the most disastrous reactor malfunction in the history of nuclear power. More than 40,000 residents in the immediate area were exposed to fallout 100 times greater than that from the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan. Based on top-secret government documents that came to light only after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1999, THE BATTLE OF CHERNOBYL reveals a systematic cover-up of the true scope of the disaster, including the possibility of a secondary explosion of the still-smouldering magma, whose radioactive clouds would have rendered Europe uninhabitable.*

Today it is exactly twenty-one years since the nuclear accident in Chernobyl. I do remember it very clearly, indeed. Here is a map of the radioactive fallout of the Caesium-137 over the landmass of Europe. The time when most of the world were kept in the dark over the incident and the consequences of the same. The month of April in 1986 had been rather nice in Ireland, so that the children were outside much – actually, well after the time, when the nation should have been notified to keep them in. Neither were we given the practical advice as in the windows needing to be closed and so on. Here is what the BBC said about it in 1986 and even this day in 2006. The Soviets did not admit to the accident while the monitoring stations in Sweden, Finland and Norway began to report sudden high discharges of radioactivity in the atmosphere two days previously. Also, the Wikipedia has excellent and interesting material on it in here. The Swedish newspaper called Dagens Nyheter had this to say in Swedish in 2006. The Finnish one – my usual morning paper, Helsingin Sanomat said this about the disaster in 2006.

This link is a photographic exhibition online about a Finnish man, who recently went to the ghost town of Pripyat that is located right besides the Chernobyl nuclear plant. It is called: Pripyat – Population Zero, in English. Very interesting and moving at the same time as the place looks like not so-long-ago abandoned and yet it is already 20 years ago! The people leaving their homes were told that they would be gone for only three days… Lisa gave a tip of this site called Kiddofspeed about this very brave lady, Elena, riding her bike in these affected areas taking photos and writing most interesting articles about the same.

Alpha, Beta, Gamma.
It is time to learn a couple of simple things about radiation types. Ones that goes through us is called gamma radiation, it is cumulative, it adds up, so we can calculate what a damage it make for health. Gamma is almost identical X-rays. X-rays are human made, while gamma occurs in nature. It is also called a cosmic radiation. Everyone who (is) flying high on plane (will be) exposed to the 25 mR/hr of cosmic radiation. Gamma is the toughest type of radiation for immediate problems. It is sort of invisible bullets that can kill in hours, alpha and beta on the other hand are alike to delayed-action mine. With breathing of radioactive dust, they are) getting inside of a human body, lodges there and in a few years explode with the cancer cells. A beta particle has more mass and less energy then gamma, so it doesn’t penetrate matter as deeply. Alpha radiation generally can not travel 4-12cms (1-3 inches) before it stopped, so we can play billiard with balls of a pure plutonium. The dead cells on our skin will stop beta radiation, so even juggling with plutonium balls will be safe, just don’t swallow them by mistake. (Elena’s online site.) The words in brackets are mine to clarify further the point she is making, I do hope anyway.

Chernobyl compared to Hiroshima (Wikipedia)

“Far fewer people died as an immediate result of the Chernobyl event than died at Hiroshima, and the eventual total is also significantly less when including those predicted by the WHO to die in the future. However, the radioactivity released at Chernobyl tended to be more long lived than that released by a bomb detonation. Chernobyl released 890 times as much caesium-137 as the Hiroshima bomb, released 87 times as much strontium-90 as the Hiroshima bomb and when the iodine-131 release is compared between the events (decay corrected to three days after the event) then Chernobyl released 25 times as much as the Hiroshima bomb. When the xenon-133 release is compared between the events (decay corrected to three days after the event) then Chernobyl released 31 times as much as the Hiroshima bomb. Hence it is not possible to draw a simple comparison between the two events. Sources of environmental radioactivity.”

Chernobyl compared with the Three Mile Island accident (Wikipedia)

“Three Mile Island-2 was a completely different accident from Chernobyl. Chernobyl was a human-caused power excursion causing a steam explosion resulting in an graphite fire, uncontained, which lofted radioactive smoke high into the atmosphere – TMI was a slow, undetected leak that lowered the water level around the nuclear fuel, resulting in over a third of it melting. Unlike Chernobyl, TMI-2’s reactor vessel did not fail and contained almost all of the radioactive material. Containment at TMI did not fail – but it was not sealed off until after some water containing radioactive material had flowed through an overflow pipe and into the rest of the plant. Radioactive gases from that overflow leaked into the atmosphere, mostly noble gases.”

“Chernobyl Heart” is a medical condition caused by the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster. The condition weakens the circulatory system, and has affected a large number of children in Ukraine and Belarus who have grown up near the place of the accident. Chernobyl Heart by Maryann DeLeo is a short documentary which offers a look at the children and families who are facing this dangerous disease.” (Wikipedia)

Closer to home so to say, Ireland is the country most affected by the UK’s nuclear industry. Sellafield is only 60 miles away from the Irish coast and has been pumping 2 million gallons of liquid radioactive waste into the Irish Sea every day, making the Irish Sea the most radioactive sea in the world. If an accident happens at the plant or with the shipment, or if there is a terrorist attack, depending on which way the wind blows, Dublin, Dundalk, Drogheda, Belfast, and vast parts of Ireland, would be uninhabitable. No wonder the Irish government is sending a navy patrol boat and a spotter plane to closely monitor the shipment. (Greenpeace online)

Tis for now Riihele xx.

*The Battle of Chernobyl
A Film by Thomas Johnson
Everything you want to know about Nuclear Power.

Irish objections to Sellafield
Norwegian objections on the same.

de Maupertuis, Science and Tornio Valley


There was quite an influx of travellers to Tornio Valley in the 17th and 18th centuries of the common era. Several very famous or should I say, some who became, even more famous after their journey to this part of the globe. In 1736-1737 came an expedition to Tornio Valley to determine the shape of the earth. An argument between the scientists had arisen as to whether the earth was flattened at the poles or whether it was extended – prolate – at these points. There was also under discussion as what kind of shape the earth would be – whether it was an orange or a lemon as I would put these scientific terms: oblate and prolate in layman’s terms of everyday language! Such a droll to be a scientist, methinks…*

The French Cartesians claimed that the latter of the above was the case, whereas Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) held the view, that the earth was flattened – oblate – at the poles. Newton’s claim was set forth in his Principia (Philosophiae naturalis principia mathematica, 1687). There developed a scientific dispute between London and Paris over the issue. To resolve the dilemma and to find out the facts, Academie Francaise – the French Academy of Science – commissioned two expeditions; one to Peru and the other to Tornio Valley.

A gentleman named, Pierre Louis Moreau de Maupertuis (1698-1759) was the leader of the expedition sent by the French King Louis XV, to Tornio Valley in 1736-1737. Maupertuis was a supporter of Newton’s theory. Anders Celsius – the one where the Centigrade comes from – was one who strongly influenced the French Expedition to take place in Tornio Valley while visiting Paris.

To enable to get the triangulation – the meridian points – measured, a north and south line one degree long was needed. The River Tornio and the mountains surrounding it were just the ticket – were perfectly suited for these measurements. Aavasaksa mountain was the central point for the whole business of getting these triangulation points. Other meridian points that were locally used include the Tornio Church steeple and Pello further north. The party of the expedition had quite an adventure in their task as long treks and dramatic boat journeys were required to do the job.

And the results to the crux – to the puzzle? Sir Isaac won the argument, as the earth is FLATTENED at the poles. The expedition was concluded in Tornio where a map with the finalised calculations was drawn up. Further research was carried out by other scientists. This scientific journey had a major impact in Europe making de Maupertuis to an even more notable scientist and an expert on Lapland.

The other result of these measurements was that for the first time the maps of that time included the Arctic Circle! In the end it was found that de Maupertuis’s measurements did not tally exactly and so later measurements found the shortfall and corrected his findings. Nowadays, the satellites have replaced the men on foot in these matters!

An earlier expedition by an Italian called Francesco Negri took place in 1663. Negri travelled from Danzig in Preussia via Stockholm to Tornio Valley. He wrote about his experiences and about the life in the north of which he became very knowledgeable. He wrote about the Finns and of animals such as reindeer, as well.

Then came the visit of Carolus Linnaeus (1707-1778). He is known in Sweden as Carl von Linne. He is still today, a very well-known scientist and a writer. He was a famous botanist and also a notable physician, who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of taxonomy – the Systema Naturae. Linnaeus is also considered to be one of the fathers of the modern ecology. The Academy of Science at Uppsala commissioned Linnaeus to explore Northern Lapland with its exotic life style of the natives and their state of health.

Yet another two exploration parties came to Tornio Valley in the form of Guiseppe Acerbi, (1773-1846) the Italian, and Edward D. Clarke, (1769-1822) the Englishman. Both of these men wrote about their scientific expeditions to this part of the globe. The year was 1798 – the year of the major upheavals in France, and the following year in 1799, Napoleon (1769-1821) came in to power. Signor Acerbi – the Italian – was accompanied by a Swedish officer called A.F. Sjöldebrand, who is renown for his illustrations of the Tornio Valley landscape.

Tis for now – until the next time, Riihele xx.

* If you take a look at the link on oblate – you will see a picture that to me definitely looks like an ORANGE!! So not a lemon but more of an orange. Hmmm… Must tink about it, now.