Medicine: Dying Autopsy

A trend worrying doctors

In the 3rd century B.C., the Greek anatomist Erasistratus noticed that the liver of a man dead of dropsy was as hard as stone but that of a man who had died of snakebite was soft. So physicians have long known that examining the dead could provide valuable information for the living. By the 20th century, the post-mortem examination, or autopsy (from the Greek for seeing with one's own eyes), had become a routine medical procedure. Yet since the end of World War II there has been a sharp reversal, and the autopsy itself appears to be dying....

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