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Slideshow: Medical Apps Prescribed a Healthy Dose of 3D Printing
7/16/2012

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Medical device makers are leveraging 3D printers to model internal organs and other human parts to help guide physicians through complex procedures. In one example, CAD models based on CT scan data are created and then output through 3D printers such as Stratasys's uPrint SE model.   (Source: Stratasys)
Medical device makers are leveraging 3D printers to model internal organs and other human parts to help guide physicians through complex procedures. In one example, CAD models based on CT scan data are created and then output through 3D printers such as Stratasys's uPrint SE model.
(Source: Stratasys)

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Rob Spiegel
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The world of medical 3D printing
Rob Spiegel   7/16/2012 11:21:09 AM
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Impressive slide show, Beth. This is a whiole world of medical 3D I wasn't aware of. I found it particualarly interesting that 3D printing would be used to help surgeons figure out how to separate co-joined twins. Amazing.

Beth Stackpole
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Re: The world of medical 3D printing
Beth Stackpole   7/16/2012 12:05:39 PM
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That was pretty amazing, Rob. It was done a while ago and the technology has advanced so far even since then. From what I can see, medical applications are a huge area for 3D printing, both historically and going forward.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: The world of medical 3D printing
Rob Spiegel   7/16/2012 12:57:28 PM
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Your articles are giving us a good education on the uses and development of 3D printing. Some of the comments from earlier 3D printing articles go into detail on the use of the technology and the value it gives the design engineer. From what I'm hearing, the devices do save time and dollars, even though there are glitches along the way.

Charles Murray
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Re: The world of medical 3D printing
Charles Murray   7/16/2012 9:54:50 PM
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It's astounding to see what 3D printing is capable of. A human mandible, artificial blood vessels and a human foot (which has 26 bones, I looked it up) -- these are delicate, complex tasks.

Beth Stackpole
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Re: The world of medical 3D printing
Beth Stackpole   7/17/2012 9:36:57 AM
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Not only delicate, but demanding in terms of materials variety and the flexibility required. 3D printing makes so much sense because so many medical applications require custom fit and specifications tailored for individual patient. With continuous improvements and with prices on the technology coming down, it's a perfect match.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: The world of medical 3D printing
Ann R. Thryft   7/17/2012 1:16:13 PM
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Yes, the cojoined twins "app" was astonishing.Thanks, Beth, for an instructive, enlightening presentation on quite a wide range of uses for 3D printing in medical and dental engineering.

Greg M. Jung
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New Frontiers
Greg M. Jung   7/16/2012 9:53:54 PM
Inspiring article which reminds me how we can continue to use new technolgy to make postive impacts in people's lives.  It seems that Medical 3D printing is poised to take off in many different directions and I'm thinking that some of these new applications will be commonplace in the years to come.

NadineJ
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Re: New Frontiers
NadineJ   7/17/2012 12:38:19 AM
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I saw some of this at an Orthopaedic Surgeons conference last year.  It was pretty cool.  Nice slide show.

Must be a great time to be a medical student!

sensor pro
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Re: New Frontiers
sensor pro   7/17/2012 11:24:08 AM
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You are correct. We had a small demo done to us before our sons surgery. the surgent took the whole section apart to review the procedure. It is realy great that 3D is being used in such important applications.

ChasChas
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scaffolds
ChasChas   7/17/2012 11:45:19 AM
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I don't see anything on printing scaffolds or substrates to grow live tissue on. I know they did it for an artificial trachea in Sweden. 

Beth Stackpole
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Re: scaffolds
Beth Stackpole   7/19/2012 1:12:57 PM
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@ChasChas: Check out this post and video on 3D printing blood vessels.

gsmith120
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Biocompatible
gsmith120   7/19/2012 12:46:16 PM
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Beth, nice article and very interesting. My medical knowledge is not enough to be dangerous but when I see the terms "biocompatible" and "create human organs" I'm thinking this would be great if this was used to 3D a human's heart, lung or other organ for transplanting. Eliminating the need for a live donor and hopefully decreasing the chances of the body rejecting the organ.

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