Volume 20, Issue 3 (July 1975)
A Rapid Technique for Preparation of Human Fetal and Adult Skeletal Material
Medical examiners, forensic pathologists, physical anthropologists, and others working with cadaveric remains often need to remove soft tissues and prepare skeletal material for further examination and retention. Currently several techniques for accomplishing this are available, including a five-step anatomical technique consisting of maceration, cleaning, degreasing, bleaching, and varnishing the bones with Alvar® to preserve them . Another technique often used is to allow a colony of Dermestidae beetles to clean the tissues. However, both of these techniques are time-consuming, and we have found that an antiformin technique provides a much better and faster preparation. This technique has resulted from refinement of the methods described by Ternak  and Schmitt  and developed in skeletal preparation instruction in the Department of Anthropology during the past two years . Independent techniques have evolved in the Developmental Anatomy Laboratory of the Medical School for Preparation of fetal or infant osseous and cartilaginous materials, and these have been included to provide for the full range of human materials which may be encountered. The following instructions are intended to provide the user with a rapid method for skeletal preparation which we have found to be an improvement over previous methods.