Craniofacial and Maxillofacial Reconstruction surgery can benefit from 3D printed anatomical models by using them for:

  • Visualization of congenital deformities or trauma cases to plan neccesary procedures.

  • Designing custom implants and prosthesis

  • Pre-contouring of fixation plates for better symmetry and contouring.

3D printed models used to pre-contour fixation plate for a mandibular reconstruction.

A  mandibular reconstruction surgery made use of 3D model of the patient's skull and jaw to pre-bend the fixation plates to better match the patient's facial contours. The models allowed the surgeons to perform this prior to the surgery, which resulted in time spent in surgery to be shortened by 45 minutes.

Images courtesy Z-corp (now owned by 3D Systems)

Designing custom implants

Custom, patient-specific cranial implants can be designed using the 3D printed anatomy of the patient as a reference, taking into account the symmetry and the natural contours of the patients head. Implant can be fitted and tested before the date of the surgery, essentially improving the outcome.

Images courtesy Z-corp (now owned by 3D Systems)

3D printed models are widely used as training models for doctors and medical students. Models printed using ColourJet technology have bone-like characteristics that allow drilling, cutting and sawing. 

Images courtesy Z-corp (now owned by 3D Systems)

Practice and training models

Sapo Implant, an implant surgery training institute, has teamed up with 3D Systems to produce training models from CT scan data. The models, having very bone-like characteristics, are used to gain a hands-on approach to practicing surgical techniques.

Images and video courtesy 3D Systems and Sapo Implants


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