Anatomy and Embryology

  • José Marcio Neves Jorge
  • Angelita Habr-Gama


Although much of our fundamental understanding of the anatomy of the colon, rectum, and anus comes from the efforts of researchers of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, comprehensive observations of this region had been made as early as 1543 by Andreas Vesalius through anatomic dissections.1 However, anatomy of this region, especially that of the rectum and anal canal, is so intrinsically related to its physiology that much can be appreciated only in the living. Thus, it is a region in which the surgeon has an advantage over the anatomist through in vivo dissection, physiologic investigation, and endoscopic examination. However, anatomy of the pelvis is also challenging to the surgeon: the pelvis is a narrow space, packed with intestinal, urologic, gynecologic, vascular, and neural structures, all confined within a rigid and deep osseous–muscular cage.


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Copyright information

© ASCRS (American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Marcio Neves Jorge
    • 1
  • Angelita Habr-Gama
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Gastroenterology, Colorectal DivisionUniversity of Sao PaoloSao PaoloBrazil
  2. 2.University of São PauloSao PaoloBrazil
  3. 3.University of São PauloSao PaoloBrazil

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