The Human Body: A Never-Ending Mystery

Describe your favorite academic subject and explain how it has influenced you.

After my first semester of Anatomy and Physiology, I thought that I was a genius in the subject. The class was rigorous, but rightfully so; in those five months I became fluent in obscure topics and conditions. But, on the first day of second semester, I walked into class to see an x-ray on the board and accompanying questions that completely baffled me. What is unusual about this picture? Should this person be alive?

The heart, it turned out, was curiously on the right side of the body. After five minutes of the class’s silent confusion, my teacher told us about situs inversus, and that it is, in fact, possible for someone to survive with their organs transposed through the sagittal plane to lie on the opposite side of the body. Just when I thought I was becoming well-versed in the subject, it still found ways to prove me wrong.

For the rest of the semester, I took delight in the idea that even doctors, who go through years of additional education, never stop learning. I craved this never-ending quest for knowledge. I discovered oddities of the human body and shared their causes with my friends. Lab requirements became the bare minimum; I stayed after school to exceed them, extracting bits of spinal cord from my specimen or...

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