Anatomical Planes of the Body
Medical professionals often refer to sections of the body in terms of anatomical planes (flat surfaces). These planes are imaginary lines – vertical or horizontal – drawn through an upright body. The terms are used to describe a specific body part.
Listed below are general anatomical terms and their meanings.
|Coronal Plane or Frontal Plane|
|Sagittal Plane or Lateral Plane|
|Axial Plane or Transverse Plane|
|Medial||Toward the midline of the body|
|Lateral||Away from the midline of the body|
|Proximal||Toward a reference point (extremity)|
|Distal||Away from a reference point (extremity)|
|Inferior||Lower or below|
|Superior||Upper or above|
|Cephalad or Cranial||Head|
|Caudal or Caudad||Tail, tail end|
|Anterior||Toward the front|
|Posterior||Toward the back|
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