Makers and surgical trainee team up to improve prototyping bones from CT scans with 3D printers


12 Responses to “Makers and surgical trainee team up to improve prototyping bones from CT scans with 3D printers”

  1. kmoser says:

    “When I showed it to my surgeon (a man of heroic reserve and calm) he practically flipped his lid and I practically had to pry it out of his fingers.”What kind of surgeon has never seen an anatomical model before? You figure this would have been old news to him.

    • Guest says:

      it’s not *just* a model. It’s a cost effective and useful model of the actual bone he is going to encounter, provided by a patient. That’s just not old hat. Not yet. 

    • I think it’s probably the fact that it’s not an anatomical model, it’s a model of Cory’s actual bone. As a med student who’s done a bit of Ortho actual physical models of individual patient’s bones aren’t used very often, and I can imagine all the surgeons I know going mental for being able to practice on someone’s real anatomy.

      A friend of mine is in the process of making an accurate model of the head for the RCS for  neurologists/surgeons to learn with and practice on. Not just a take-the-plastic-bits-apart model like you got in school but a solid thing made of various materials you can cut open to examine. They can also include any kind of pathology in it that you want, and they’re cheap enough to actually be used. These kind of things are going to really change how anatomy teaching and medical training work.

  2. Brainspore says:

    Cool stuff, but I can’t be the only one wondering how much longer until we can make actual replacement bones this way.

  3. Roy Trumbull says:

    If you required a different material does the printer permit the making of a mold?

    • Paul Tomlinson says:

      You would create a negative mold from the 3d print, which would probably be more economical than printing a mold in the first place.

  4. gadgetphile says:

    Is this cost effective? Rather, how much time did the surgeon take in getting the data ready for Shapeways vs. paying someone else to massage the data and build it? If it’s as simply turn-key as giving the data to the local prototype shop at the university.

    And is building something like a copy of a body part going to run afoul of the HIPPA’s privacy provisions? Yeah, probably not, but at what point will it start to?

  5. Ian V says:

    To clarify a bit; the figure of $1200 is in dollars, while £77 is in pounds. All in dollars, that’s $1200 versus about $120. He got it done for about a tenth of the cost.

  6. Diogenes says:

    Now imagine an MRI of your head, converted and 3D printed, in transparent plastic of varying colors.  I’m going to put LEDs in mine and hook them to an EEG machine to display my thoughts. 
    A mood head!

  7. Mark Dow says:

    MeshLab runs on Windows too.

  8. Jerril says:

    Most of the print outfits can handle more than one material. Usually a bunch of different polymers, and some metals. Some clays sometimes, some glass sometimes.

    But yes, polishing up your finished product and making a cast of it would be much more economical under most circumstances.

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