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5 incredible facts on medical 3D printing

3D printing has evolved in recent years from a futuristic technology to a reality for everyone, from large manufacturing companies to your desk at home. The medical industry follows this trend bringing itself several concepts related to ethics and compliance with regulations and certifications. Concepts that have led to important discoveries.

Talking about medical 3D printing, soon we’ll see this trend expand in 5 crucial fields.

 

  1. Digital dentistry

In this context, we talk already from many years about a digital revolution. And with good reason.

Dentistry is one of the fields where 3D printing has achieved the best results in terms of accuracy and quality. The processes are much faster and costs are reduced with the advance of technology. In dental clinics and laboratories, you can feel the certainty that the non-digital scenario in the sector is no more conceivable, also thanks to the high professionalism of dedicated 3D printing and milling centers.

 

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  1. Drug printing

Recently, a US company, Aprecia Pharmaceuticals, has realized the first 3D printed drug. The ZipDose calling technology has been developed since the 80s from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and achieved in the last decades the optimal solution reserved for Aprecia.

3D drug printing opens a new frontier towards personalized medicine by allowing to exactly determine the required dosage for each individual patient.

 

  1. Surgical modeling

3D printing comes as a technology for prototyping and in medical 3D printing is gradually refining, allowing the production of nearly 200 categories of custom medical models in scale 1:1 obtained from the patients CT scan or MRI. The technology allows to obtain a 3D model of virtually every part of the body that can be divided into sections connected by a hinge to see inside the part under examination.

This means greater reliability of operations of doctors as well as the training, consequently improving collaboration between doctor and patient for increasingly effective treatment and awareness.

 

  1. Bioprinting

In the operating room of the future, a surgeon can intervene on your damaged organs with custom parts tailored to your anatomy, with no need for waiting lists or risk of rejection.

Costs are not so prohibitive and the technologies are becoming more advanced towards new discoveries. It seems far-fetched, but in a world not too far we will be able to cure our heart with medical 3D printing.

 

  1. Prosthetics

Medical 3D printing applied to Prosthetics is already changing many lives around the world. An example is the Refugee Open Ware (ROW) http://www.row3d.org/ , an humanitarian association whose goal is to teach to people affected by a conflict in using 3D printing technology for making prostheses.

But not only. Last Christmas Brooklyn, a 4 year old English child born with one single hand, has received a gift of a hyper prosthesis made by the researchers of Design and Technology at the Shotton Hall Academy in Durham.

“This is a dream come true,” said the mother of Brooklyn, “now has two hands, and he thinks he’s a superhero, since he loves the Avengers, like many children of his age.”

Scott Bradley Academy of Shotton commented satisfied: “It is only thanks to this great technology that we have been able to produce something so fundamental to the life of this young boy.”

 

Sources: Cate Lawrence from sitepoint.com, stampa3dstore.com, Aprecia and ROW

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