Henry Gray (18251861). Anatomy of the Human Body. 1918.
of the viscera may be grouped according to their functions: (a) the respiratory apparatus; (b) the digestive apparatus; and (c) the urogenital apparatus. Strictly speaking, the third subgroup should include only such components of the urogenital apparatus as are included within the abdomino-pelvic cavity, but it is convenient to study under this heading certain parts which lie in relation to the surface of the body, e. g., the testes and the external organs of generation.
For descriptive purposes the body is supposed to be in the erect posture, with the arms hanging by the sides and the palms of the hands directed forward. The median plane is a vertical antero-posterior plane, passing through the center of the trunk. This plane will pass approximately through the sagittal suture of the skull, and hence any plane parallel to it is termed a sagittal plane. A vertical plane at right angles to the median plane passes, roughly speaking, through the central part of the coronal suture or through a line parallel to it; such a plane is known as a frontal plane or sometimes as a coronal plane. A plane at right angles to both the median and frontal planes is termed a transverse plane.
The terms anterior or ventral, and posterior or dorsal, are employed to indicate the relation of parts to the front or back of the body or limbs, and the terms superior or cephalic, and inferior or caudal, to indicate the relative levels of different structures; structures nearer to or farther from the median plane are referred to as medial or lateral respectively.
The terms superficial and deep are strictly confined to descriptions of the relative depth from the surface of the various structures; external and internal are reserved almost entirely for describing the walls of cavities or of hollow viscera. In the case of the limbs the words proximal and distal refer to the relative distance from the attached end of the limb.