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'Bodies' exhibition teaching sun safety
by Bobby Tedder
btedder@neighbornewspapers.com
July 24, 2013 11:25 AM | 1672 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Samantha M. Shal
Kaitlyn Miliks of Buckhead, left, looks at human bones with classmates from Georgia Gwinnett College at the Bodies Exhibit at Atlantic Station.
Staff / Samantha M. Shal Kaitlyn Miliks of Buckhead, left, looks at human bones with classmates from Georgia Gwinnett College at the Bodies Exhibit at Atlantic Station.
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Most teachers would be hard pressed to find a better visual aid about the potentially harmful effects of the summertime elements on the systems of the human body than an actual human body.

By that logic, Dr. Roy Glover is privy to an embarrassment of riches, so to speak.

Glover, as chief medical director and spokesperson for “Bodies … The Exhibition,” is helping to spearhead an educational campaign about the dangers of overexposure to the sun and heat this time of year.

“I think there are too many people who worship the sun for all the wrong reasons,” said Glover. “[With ‘Bodies’], the more people see things the way they really are … the more likely they are to be engaged.”

The exhibition — a jarring collection of human bodies and individual organ specimens — has taken up residence at the Atlantic Station Premier Exhibition Center for the past five-plus years.

The centerpiece of the sun safety initiative there was a seminar earlier this month featuring Dr. Sulochana Bhandarkar, an assistant professor of dermatology at Emory University School of Medicine in DeKalb County.

The session touched on skincare basics and other need-to-know topics like the negative impact of UVA and UVB rays on both skin and immune systems. Visitors to the site can further increase their awareness through the bevy of “sun safety facts” on display there throughout the summer season.

“Melanoma, skin cancer, is a pretty popular bit of information that people understand,” said Glover. “But, they don’t realize that too much sunlight can also be detrimental to the immune system, like how it affects white blood cells … whose [duty] it is to not allow anything in the body that causes us harm.”

Of course, all content at “Bodies,” regardless of method of presentation, is invariably reinforced by the presence of its couple hundred human vessels, meticulously dissected and “respectfully” displayed.

Unhealthy lifestyles — from smoking to sunlight abuse — and the ensuing internal havoc wreaked are ingrained in the exhibit’s premise.

Carefully crafted galleries there are dedicated to each of the body’s systems: skeletal, muscular, nervous, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive and circulatory.

“Bodies” has become a global phenomenon for Atlanta-based Premier. More than 15 million people worldwide have flocked to the exhibition sites.

“People are fascinated by it,” said Premier spokesperson Theresa Nelson. “Everybody comes to the exhibit with their own personal medical history … and hopefully get a better understanding of how to take care of your body.”
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