Why do some people live long and healthy lives, while others die younger and after painful illnesses? For many of us death is mysterious – an outsider which robs us of life in an instant and without warning. But death and disease are, in many ways, less of a mystery than we imagine; their origins are in our genes and in the lives that we lead. Through a series of dissections of human cadavers by anatomist Dr Gunther von Hagens, which are illuminated by British pathologist Professor John Lee, this series explores the reality of disease and death, answering all the crucial questions. The experts also use live models, specimens and demonstrations to illustrate the underlying processes of the body and explain what can be done to aid detection of disease and improve health and longevity.
In this episode: Poison. An investigation, including a live dissection of a human body, into how the failure of the kidneys, liver or bowel can cause death.
Illnesses and issues explored in the episodes include diseases affecting the circulatory system, cancer, poisoning and ageing. The series was filmed before an invited audience at the Institute of Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany.