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Recommended video: Directional terms and body planes [10:35]
Locating structures in your body is one of the main components of anatomy. Learn all terms used to describe location in the human body.

The term lateral is a directional term that is used to describe the position of a structure relative to the median plane and the sides of the body. More specifically, it describes how further away a structure is from the median plane of the body.

The term medial is the opposite of lateral, and denotes how close a structure is to the median plane of the body.

For example, the ear is lateral to the eye, which is in turn lateral to the nose. Alternatively, the nose is medial to the eye.

Terminology English: Lateral
Latin: Lateralis
Examples Lateral malleolus, Lateral ventricle

Learn all the directional terms and body planes with the following study unit:

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