Publication details

Embalming Techniques for Long-Term Preservation of Bodies



Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source The Journal of Plastination
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Medicine

Web The Journal of Plastination
Keywords embalming; Lenin; Lombardo; paraffinization; Perón; Pyrogov
Description There are only a few methods of preserving bodies that keep them in excellent condition for decades. These methods were developed mostly to sustain the cult of a political leader. Of the long-term embalmed bodies, only V.I. Lenin, Ho Chi Minh, Mao Zedong, Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il, the body of Professor Pyrogov, Rosalia Lombardo, and the corpse of a man in the Omsk Anatomical Museum, remain on display. The other bodies were subsequently buried in a tomb. Mention may also be made of the embalmed body of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, exhibited 1989-2012, which was embalmed by Philippine embalmer Frank Malabed. The body was original with a wax mask on his face. The embalming of the Vatican popes is carried out by the funeral home of Signoracci. Embalming solutions contain formaldehyde, ethanol, glycerine, sodium acetate, potassium acetate and thymol, or use paraffin impregnation. In most cases, it is also necessary to maintain standard environmental conditions such as humidity and air temperature. This paper provides an overview of the major and most successful embalming techniques, with a focus on the Soviet-Russian method and its development.

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