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.
At the University of Queensland in Australia, Dr. Olga Panagiotopoulou has been researching the effects of feeding on the mechanics of the primate jaw. The ultimate goal of her research is to determine the relationship between the form and function of the mandible during mastication, and thereby improve the accuracy of anatomical models and jaw implants.
Making the world a better and healthier place was certainly the goal Materialise had in mind when they decided to donate a grant to the Centre for Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing (CRPM) at Central University of Technology, Free State in South Africa. The grant allowed the CRPM to help some patients with life-changing interventions, and to introduce students to the benefits of using 3D printing in the medical field. One of the patients helped by the CRPM was a young woman of 32. She suffered from an ossifying fibroma tumor in her lower jaw. The surgical team decided it was necessary to immediately resect the tumor and place a custom-made laser-sintered titanium implant in the patient’s mouth.
A new study led by scientists at the American Museum of Natural History shows that living sharks are actually quite advanced in evolutionary terms, despite having retained their basic “sharkiness” over millions of years. This new study is based on an extremely well-preserved shark fossil named Ozarcus mapesae and a 3D reconstruction of it. The research was published in the journal Nature.
Temporomandibular joint ankylosis, or the fusion of the jawbone, is most often the result of an injury or infection, and it prevents the patient from opening their mouth properly. It can only be treated with surgery, but due to the complex nature of the operation which presents a lot of risks for the patient, surgeons are often too careful to really perform an effective surgery. This means that the problem isn’t solved properly and is in danger of recurring.
Gender reassignment surgery has come a long way since Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld performed some of the world’s first male-to-female operations in Berlin in the 1930’s. Transsexual men and women are able to reassign their gender with a much higher degree of success than in those early 20th century operations, and the medical field is continuously advancing its possibilities. Mimics Innovation Award winner Dr. Claudio Storck is one such researcher evolving the boundaries of what is possible. A specialist in Otolaryngology, or the field of medicine which deals with the ear, nose and throat region, he has focused his research on improving the outcome of phonosurgery in transgender patients.
15-year-old Parker Turchan was faced with an unexpected and life-threatening tumor, located in his nose and sinuses, and which extended all the way through his skull to his brain. Referred to the University of Michigan’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, doctors faced the limitations of conventional endoscopy as the sinus tumor extended so deep into the bone they were unable to visualize it completely.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given a 510(k) clearance to a 3D-printed titanium cranial/craniofacial implant manufactured by US- and Brazil-based company BioArchitects. This important news marks the start of the company’s marketing for the device in the US.
A few years ago, Tan Seng Yam developed a swelling near his jaw. Dentists and doctors assured him that it didn’t seem to be critical, so Seng Yam wasn’t worried—yet. But then it kept growing, for the next five to seven years. That’s a long time to live with discomfort, and eventually it worsened to the point that Seng Yam was unable to eat. That’s when he consulted a specialist, who recognized that the condition was in fact serious: the swelling was the result of a tumor in Seng Yam’s jawbone.
What do you think of when you hear “technology-driven professional”? ‘Surgeon’ should be on the top of that list, according to Dr. Nazimi from the UKM Medical Centre (UKMMC). He felt this, especially when Sharifah was referred to him after a severe accident. Her body was broken in 7 different regions and she had to undergo several major operations.