VSL:SCIENCE // See all the way inside the human body

Just a few doctors and nurses get to see the exquisite insides of the human body: our coiled intestines, fatty livers, and intensely beating hearts. Unless something goes terribly wrong, the rest of us see nothing but skin.

Thankfully, there’s Oystein Horgmo, a Norwegian medical photographer and blogger at the Sterile Eye. He takes readers inside the surgical process, describing everything from the triangulation of blood vessels — a seminal invention in the history of medicine — to the sickly sweetish smell of cautery smoke after a spleen is removed and the snipped blood vessels burned shut. At first glance, his photos and videos look gruesome: a gallery of blood, guts, and obscure organs. But when we inspected more closely, we couldn’t help but gawk at how the purple lymph nodes are nested in nerves, and at the thin layer of yellow fat that cushions our digestive tracks. The Sterile Eye isn’t simply a chronicle of the tools and techniques of modern surgery — it’s a tribute to the human machine itself.

This post is from Observer Short List—an email of three favorite things from people you want to know. Sign up to receive OSL here. VSL:SCIENCE // See all the way inside the human body