Mimics Innovation Awards Finalist: Camilo Eduardo Pérez Cualtán

2 min read

Patient-Specific 3D-Printed Model for Stent Graft Placement and Practice in Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysms 

What was the dream?

To explore and evaluate the treatment of thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms (TAAA) using 3D-modeled and -printed pre-cannulated stent grafts.  

What was the challenge?

TAAA are complex aortic pathologies due to their difficult anatomical location and frequent asymptomatic presentation. As a result, it is essential for adequate imaging protocols to be in place. If there is not a detailed and thorough enough representation of the aortic anatomy, this incomplete information can lead to complications such as misalignment, insufficient overlap, migration of the stent graft, limb occlusion, or vessel rupture. 

In this case, the device was being used by the medical team for the first time, and this comes with a variety of challenges. Prior to the procedure, which was done on a 69-year-old patient, the authors of the study utilized 3D modeling and printing to simulate and practice the implantation of the pre-annulated, off-the-shelf stent graft. 

What are the results?

To simulate and practice the procedure beforehand, Mr. Pérez, under the supervision of Prof. Juan Carlos Briceño Triana, 3D printed two replicas of the patient’s anatomy: one that was translucid and flexible and one that was opaque and rigid. These models were then evaluated under fluoroscopic imaging. Thirty days after the procedure was successfully performed, a follow-up CT scan showed that the stent graft was in the correct position, with no endoleaks. Thus, it was concluded that the use of 3D models, both digital and printed, is valuable for the planning of future TAAA interventions and that they can help avoid procedural complications and improve surgical success rates. 

Why this research reached the final

Using a new medical device for treating TAAA is a huge undertaking, but the team was able to successfully deliver and implant the device with the help of Mimics Innovation Suite. By utilizing physical replicas made through 3D modeling and printing in the software, the team was able to thoroughly test the device prior to the intervention, therefore confirming whether the device would be suitable for the particular patient. Ultimately, the team completed a successful implantation and established a comprehensive methodology that can be reused with other patients and different devices. 


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Camilo Eduardo Perez Cualtan holding 3D-printed anatomical models


Camilo Eduardo Pérez Cualtán

Camilo Pérez received his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering from the Universidad Autónoma de Occidente in Colombia in 2018. He then obtained his M.Sc. in Bioengineering (cum laude) from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, also in Colombia, in 2022. Currently, Mr. Pérez is enrolled as a Ph.D. student in engineering at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. As part of his Ph.D., he is a Research Assistant at the 3D Modeling and Printing Center at Fundación Cardioinfantil (LaCardio), the top cardiovascular pediatric hospital in Colombia. At the center, his research aims to evaluate different 3D technologies in the clinical workflow under the leadership of Prof. Juan C. Briceño. Mr. Pérez has worked in innovation management and intellectual property schemes, as well as in medical image processing companies. Additionally, he has participated in projects in the health field and has achieved national scientific grants for his postgraduate studies. His current research, under the supervision of Prof. Juan C. Briceño, focuses on the use of 3D printing in the clinical workflow, biomechanical computational simulation, and optimization and machine learning techniques oriented to the study of percutaneous procedures. 

Juan Carlos Briceño Triana, Full Professor and Founding Chairman (2011-2017) of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Universidad de los  Andes in Bogota, Colombia (Uniandes)


Leading professor: Juan Carlos Briceño Triana

Prof. Juan Carlos Briceño is currently Full Professor and Founding Chairman (2011-2017) of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Universidad de los  Andes in Bogota, Colombia (Uniandes). He is also the Founding Director of the Master and Ph.D. Programs in Management of Technological Innovation at Uniandes. He has mentored more than 100 undergraduate theses, 40 master's theses, and 8 doctoral dissertations. He has been a visiting researcher at the University of California San Diego in the United States and Institut National des Sciences appliquées de Lyon (INSA) in France. He has been elected to the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) and Fellow of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES). His interests are basic and translational research in blood substitutes, cardiovascular devices, and cardiovascular tissue engineering. Prof. Briceño holds four patents and has authored more than 35 scientific articles and two book chapters. His projects have obtained more than 35 research grants, and he started a spin-off company that produces scaffolds for tissue regeneration. He has also served as the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies of the School of Engineering at  Uniandes, as Faculty Representative in the Board of Trustees of Uniandes, and as Counselor of the Colombian National Science Foundation. He leads the Cardiovascular Dynamics Lab at Uniandes and the Blood Substitutes Laboratory at Fundacion Cardioinfantil (LaCardio), Colombia’s largest cardiac hospital.

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