Cranium produced on a Stratasys Objet30 Pro 3D Printer, used to validate patient surgery prior to the operation.
UK hospitals have implemented Stratasys 3D Printers to support pre-surgery applications with 3D printed models.
The technology is being championed by UK medical 3D printing specialist, Replica 3DM and is already having a significant impact on the length of surgical procedures and theatre costs in 12 NHS hospitals.
Replica 3DM are using Stratasys Objet24 and Objet30 Pro 3D Printers to convert patient CT scans into 3D printed models that can be used prior to surgery when testing implants for patient specific size and fit. By using specifications unique to each patient, titanium implants can go through a re-bending process to make an exact fit for each individual case. The technology can be used for preoperative investigations in orthopaedics, neurology, spinal, maxillofacial and ear, nose and throat wards.
“To us, 3D printing and the medical profession go hand-in-hand, particularly in the planning of complicated procedures,” explains Matthew Sherry, Managing Director and Founder of Replica 3DM. “With theatre typically costing around £3,600 an hour, you can imagine how much we save NHS Trusts. In most cases, a model will pay for itself and helps with essential and pre-operative surgical planning.”
The technology also allows Replica 3DM to produce cranioplasty models which can be used to gather facial reconstruction data prior to fitting titanium implants. The company claim this has reduced surgery time significantly.
Currently Replica 3DM offers it 3D printing medical services to NHS hospitals across the UK, giving units that do not have in house access to 3D printers, the opportunity to utilise this ground-breaking technology.