If art and architecture isn't really your thing; if you look for a more shivering, bizarre and creepy experience, you might be better off by visiting the Siriraj Medical Museum in Bangkok. It will be definitely an experience that you won't forget easily. Besides learning a lot about human anatomy, diseases, forensics and medical history in Thailand, you will have the chance to see lots of embalmed and dissected dead human bodies and organs.
What is the Siriraj Medical Museum?
The Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hostpital, the oldest medical institute of Thailand, has established the Siriraj
Medical Museum and has brought together equipment, documents and specimens from other departments to study, preserve, use as teaching material and exhibits as well as propagating medical knowledge by various means. Students as well as interested public will gain knowledge and apply what they have learned in their daily living. The medical Museums are particularly interesting from different perspectives to enable you to get new learning experiences.
What is special about the Siriraj Medical Museum?
The Siriraj Medical Museum, which is located at the east bank of Chao Praya River, just across the Grand Palace, is a place of education about human anatomy and medical history of Thailand. Not only do visitors learn about fatal wounds, common diseases like cancer, birth and congenital defects but also each case is displayed with a real example of human tissue or even a whole body. There are several fetuses with various horrifying defects, bodies with different types of gunshot wounds, organs with cancer, human hearts, extracted nervous systems or blood vessels and even a giant scrotum (due to an untreated parasitic infection).
Sections of Siriaj Medical Museum
The museum is composed of 5 sections that are at three different building of the Siriraj Medical Research & Hospital complex.
01 Ellis Pathological Museum (Building 28 on map)
02 Songkran Niyomsane Forensic Medicine Museum (Building 28 on map)
03 Parasitology Museum (Building 28 on map)
04 Congdon Anatomical Museum (Building 27 on map)
05 Sood Sangvichien Prehistoric Museum & Laboratory (Buildings B1-B4 on map)
01 Ellis Pathological Museum
Named after Prof. A. G. Ellis, who laid the foundation of Pathology in Thailand, this museum displays a typical pathology lab from the past. Exhibited are common heard deseases, various types of cancer, normal development of fetuses and malformations such as "Siamese twins", for example. The exhibits include specimens from patients, models and multimedia displays on causes and treatment of cancer.
02 Songkran Niyomsane Forensic Medicine Museum
This (large) section of Siriraj Museum illustrates the development of forensic medicine by exhibiting evidence from important post-verdict cases. Cases here include various homicides, suicides and accidents. Exhibited are injuries, real embalmed organs and bodies that had been stabbed or shot, smashed skulls due to blunt force trauma, (graphic!) photos of accident and murder aftermaths, autopsy instruments. Also, one part is dedicated to the investigations in the Tsunami event of 2004, including explanations of common injuries and death causes in that period.
03 Parasitology Museum
Various types of parasites have long been the cause of diseases. The Parasitology Museum Section exhibits samples of parasites including round worms, flat worms, liver flukes and disease-transmitting insects. Moreover, visitors get to see parasite infected organs along with information on prevalence, symptoms, harmful effects and treatment. Highlight here is a human scrotum of the size of a microwave, displaying apparently what untreated parasitic infections may lead to.
04 Congdon Anatomical Museum
With hundreds of specimen, this museum exhibits all human organs in its various shapes, extracted, dissected and inside the opened abdomen of a human body. Internal organs of every system, embryo development, muscles. Very interesting is the whole, extracted nervous system and arterial system of the human body, cross section of a human body. Included are skeletons of different sizes, which can be found at this museum.
05 Sood Sangvichien Prehistoric Museum & Laboratory
This section of the Siriraj Medical Museum explains human evolution starting from 500 million years ago down to present time. Exhibited are bone pieces, artifacts, tools, pottery, and various objects from important archaeological sites.
Location and Hours
How to get there: Take a taxi to the "Tha Prachan" pier and cross river to "Pranok Pier" by boat (3.50 THB). From there, you can easily walk to the museum