We recently opened our newest office in Sydney, Australia. Why Australia, you may ask? Well the decision to open a Materialise office down under wasn’t just based on the great weather, prime surfing spots and friendly people.
Roughly 500 years ago, Andreas Vesalius was born in Brussels to a family of court physicians. During his lifetime, he revolutionized the field of anatomy, disproving theories that had gone uncontested for the past 1,300 years. We printed out a 3D model of a brain in homage to the enduring genius of Vesalius.
This year, our office in Japan opened a brand-new medical 3D printing facility in order to provide our customers in Japan with localized service for patient-specific surgical guides and anatomical models for orthopaedic and cranio-maxillofacial surgeries. But what does it take to set up a new production facility for highly regulated medical devices? We talked to our colleagues at the Japan office to find out.
During the Mimics Innovation Conference, Dr. Jan De Backer gave an illuminating presentation about diagnosing lung diseases with Functional Respiratory Imaging, or FRI. It’s is a proprietary technology that combines high-resolution CT scans with computer-based flow simulations.
Dr. Ola Wiig, an experienced pediatric orthopaedic surgeon, was confronted with a very challenging deformity in a young teenager. Dr Wiig’s patient was suffering from severely reduced mobility as a result of an epiphysiolysis in her proximal femur, which caused her leg to be severely rotated outwards. This wasn’t just causing the patient pain, it was stopping her from being a normal teenager.
In a recent study in the Netherlands, all 12 patients who underwent an acetabular reconstruction of large Paprosky type 3 defects using the Materialise aMace custom acetabular cup, were recorded as being satisfied with the results of their procedure. The study, by Marieke Baauw, MD, Gijs Gerard van Hellemondt, MD and Maarten Spruit, MD, PhD from the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Sint-Maartenskliniek in Nijmegen, the Netherlands reported on their use of the aMace as part of an integral approach which included “a detailed approach to defect analysis, including measurement of bone deficiency and bone quality”. As reported in Helio Orthopaedics, the study presents positive results from a follow up of the 12 patients at least 18 months after surgery.
During the development of new medical devices, as well as in scientific research, it is of the highest importance to test and validate results. At the Bio-Inspired TEchnology research group of the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, engineer Awaz Ali has designed and developed a new multi-steerable catheter, with snake-like tip motions and complex curves, for complex cardiac interventions. The ability to create such a device with improved maneuverability inside the highly dynamic environment of the heart could allow more complex cardiac procedures to be performed through a transcatheter approach.
The Virtual Physiological Human Institute for Integrative Biomedical Research, or VPH Institute, is an international non-profit organization incorporated in Belgium, with a mission to ensure that the Virtual Physiological Human is fully realized, universally adopted and effectively used both in research and clinics. The VPH biannual conference series has grown out of the successful FP7 Virtual Physiological Human Network of Excellence and has become one of the major instruments for maintaining the coherence and momentum of the highly multidisciplinary VPH community.
Physicians around the globe have one goal in common, which is to improve patient care. Materialise recently attended the first workshop on Surgical Morphology and Imaging of Congenital Heart Disease in Asia organized by the Cardiac Centre at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH). As an academic medical center and teaching hospital in Singapore, KKH is taking 3D Printing technology advancements in medicine to the next level by training specialists from the region – using actual 3D-printed heart models from patients.
Catheter-based interventions are often the therapy of choice when treating the cardiovascular system of fragile and weak patients. Though often much less invasive than alternative treatments, this technique has its own limitations: it risks dislodging plaque or calcium into the circulatory system as well as potentially damaging, rupturing or penetrating the arterial walls. Also, imaging and the extensive use of contrast agent are not without risk.