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.
A five-year-old boy named Jojo from a village near Munich was diagnosed with a rare malignant tumor called Ewing`s Sarcoma. Usually found in the diaphysis (middle part) of long bones Jojo`s tumor was located in the distal part of his left femur and very close to the growth plate. Since tumor-endoprostheses are not available for such young children due to their small anatomical dimensions, an amputation or rotation plasty has to be performed in these cases.
Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust has been increasingly implementing 3D Printing in its hospital services. The latest addition to their offer has been the ability to 3D print heart models based on Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CMR) scans from their patients. And most innovatively of all, the Trust has developed a way of 3D Printing heart models that also show signs of scarring.
Today we read stories all the time about the insights that clinicians can gain from 3D-printed heart models, and the way they contribute to a successful treatment outcome and improved patient care. In this blog post we wanted to take a look at the early days of cardiac 3D Printing, and one of the first applications where the technology proved its value.
Materialise Mimics has often made a difference in the lives of hospital patients. But it isn’t only doctors and surgeons who are implementing our technology in beneficial ways – Dr. Stephen Brusatte at the University of Edinburgh is using 3D visualization to analyze dinosaur fossils -such as Tyrannosaurus-, which enables him to learn more about how evolution works over widespread timescales.
Dr. Stephen Brusatte doesn’t use Materialise Mimics to study the human body – he uses it to improve his understanding of dinosaur fossils. As the leader of the Vertebrate Paleontology Research Group at the University of Edinburgh, Dr. Brusatte is fascinated by one dinosaur species in particular: the Tyrannosaurus rex, infamous king of the dinosaurs and terrifying predator.
Patients suffering from Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) can benefit from the insights a 3D-printed model is able to provide their clinicians. Tangible models help the medical team to visualize and understand the complex anatomy of the patient’s heart. A first step in the process of creating a patient-specific model is segmenting the medical images. Dr. Nicholas Byrne et al. from Guy's and St. Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust in the UK examined the range of several cardiovascular segmentation processes and how much time each of these methods takes. The findings of this first systematic review are published in the JRSM Cardiovascular Disease journal.
Every year the experts in transcatheter heart valves therapies come together in London to share the latest developments in the field at the London Valves conference. This year’s edition showed more novelties and had more attendees than ever before. Our team was happy to meet all the stakeholders from industry and physicians that are using Materialise Mimics today in their research of new technologies and planning of novel cases. We look back at the highlights and the lessons learned.