The Business Case that Started a 3D Lab
3D Lab in North Manchester General Hospital, UK
Photo courtesy of Mr. Oliver Burley
The North Manchester General Hospital in the UK is building a name for itself with its newly established 3D printing lab. The hospital is the largest of an NHS Trust made of up of a cluster of four hospitals in the greater Manchester area. The lab is powered by three full-time members who work with nine oral-maxillofacial consultants. The initiator of the lab, Mr. Oliver Burley, a reconstructive scientist, soon became the maxillofacial laboratory manager. His business case proved to be a very obvious path towards integrating a 3D lab in the hospital. Here’s how he built his case and how his success story developed.
The lab’s main cases are head and neck cancer patients who require reconstruction. The first cases, for example, involved using DCIA bone grafts to reconstruct the upper or lower jaw of cancer patients. And there’s more. The specialized team in the lab offers patient-specific 3D-printed cutting guides and models for diagnostic use and planning. In addition, the lab team has added trauma work to their repertoire. This entails printing a head model, resecting it in 3D, and pre-bending the titanium plates that will hold the skull together.