A few years ago Westmead Children’s Hospital in Sydney was looking for a material for 3D printing that simulates bone. The aim was to help surgeons go into a theatre to operate, by giving them more understanding of bones so they can test implants and understand how the material will react when you drill or cut into it.
3D printing has a huge advantage, because you can repeatedly print the bone to the exact size and scale of the child they’re about to do the surgery on. As a result a multidisciplinary team at UNSW Built Environment has developed a bone simulation project with practical application.
Congenital heart disease (CHD) is the leading cause of death and hospitalisation in infants, affecting one in 100 births. The potential for a genetic link to the condition is now being explored in a new Australian Genomics study supported by HeartKids.So far advanced genetic testing could potentially identify the cause of conditions in up to 50% of families, helping to improve diagnosis, provide better treatment and management outcomes as well as early diagnosis of CHD. 200 families affected by CHD are urged to participate in the study to help researchers.Visit Heartkids for more information!
Hey Kids, here is some candy! All kidding aside, this could be an amazing advancement if the technology holds true in the coming years.
Colorful fish found in Africa may hold the secret to growing lost teeth. In a collaborative study between the Georgia Institute of Technology and King’s College London, researchers looked at the cichlid fishes of Lake Malawi in Africa, who lose teeth just to have a new one slide into place. Their study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
3D printing technology has enormous potential in healthcare due to its ability to be customized. Customization can dramatically reduce surgery times and medical expenses. Currently, the largest applications are 3D-printed scaffolds or prosthetics (orthopedic implants) and medical devices, such as dental implants and hearing aids. The game changer for 3D printing will be in human tissue printing: printed livers, hearts, ears, hands and eyes, or building the smallest functional units of tissues, which can lead to the fabrication of large tissues and organs. This can be used as surgical grafts to repair or replace the damaged tissues and organs.