Alex M May 24, 2016

From the CT images, it was challenging for the heart surgeon to understand the 3D relationship between the VSD and the outflow tracts. This made it difficult to assess the feasibility of connecting the aorta to the left ventricle with a patch. The surgical team felt that a more thorough approach was needed for planning such a difficult case, and contacted Materialise for support.

Generating the model for 3D Printing

Dr. Phillip Dydynski, chief of Pediatric Radiology at the Kosair Children’s Hospital, worked closely with Materialise to obtain a detailed 3D reconstruction of the intracardiac anatomy by using Materialise Mimics. The model was then 3D printed. Dr. Dydynski commented, “The Materialise Mimics segmentation tools played a key role in creating the 3D model needed for printing.” The 3D-printed model was then sectioned into three separate parts so that the surgeons could study the heart and accurately plan the surgical approach. After studying the model, the medical team ultimately decided to patch the aorta through the VSD to the left ventricle.

A segmented 3D heart model in Materialise’s Mimics Innovation Suite

The successful outcome of the operation

The operation itself went according to plan, and baby Ronald recovered well from the procedure. In fact, two years on, he has been thriving in his growth and development. His pediatric cardiologist, Dr. Smitha Bullock, let us know that her patient was not on any medication and would not require another procedure in the foreseeable future based on their most recent evaluations. Although Roland still has mild residual cardiac disease, it is being monitored on an annual basis, and from a cardiac perspective, his doctors expect him to have a completely normal childhood.

These days clinicians can easily create anatomically accurate models to simulate or evaluate options for patient-specific treatment. Watch the video below to learn the different steps on how to create a 3D printable file to plan a DORV in just 10 minutes.