What I should consider before designing patient-based 3D anatomical models?
Start each case by defining the objectives of the 3D anatomy model you would like to have 3D printed. It is essential to take all considerations into account, including the requested clinical contribution, the required time and material, as well as the feasibility of 3D Printing and cleaning the model. These requirements will help you define how to prepare your 3D model.
For example, if a surgeon requests a 3D anatomy model to plan a trauma reparation preoperatively, they might want to understand the optimal patient outcome of the restoration. For this, it would be helpful to provide a second model of the patient’s mirrored anatomy to understand what the optimal outcome would look like.
For a complex heart procedure, the surgeon will want a thorough understanding of the intricacies of the intra-cardiac anatomy or the landmarks for a specific valve or artery. This will require you to prepare the 3D heart model with windows, or to cut along a split line to achieve this visualization and separate components to identify another color in the model. Each 3D printing request will have very different 3D modeling requirements.