Anatomy – Standard Viewing Orientation

Standard Viewing Orientation

Throughout the decades of study on anatomical structures there have been sustained efforts to regularise Anatomical Terminology.  The process of collaboration was started in the first decade of the 20th century and finally become globally recognised with the publication of Terminologia Anatomica in 1998.

The latest edition of Gray’s Anatomy, possibly the most widely used anatomy textbook in the world, accepts in full the nomenclature of Terminologia Anatomica.

Gray’s Anatomy.  Elsevier Health. 40th Edition 2008.

Throughout the development of anatomical nomenclature, the way in which the object of interest is viewed has always been the same.


The Object is always considered to be standing facing the observer. This means that the object’s RIGHT side is on the observer’s Left and the LEFT side is always on the observer’s Right.
This standard nomenclature is carried through to the specific elements of individual teeth with tooth Identification systems designed to correspond with the Terminologia Anatomica.

See Tooth Nomenclature
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