How IDEX Technology Helps Life-Saving Operations
Dr. Gustavo Nari has partnered with the Mirai3D engineering start-up to develop and produce biomedical models for an enhanced surgical planning process. To this end, he used IDEX technology in his BCN3D Sigmax R19 printer.
All over the world, 3D printing technology is gaining recognition from those looking for new ways to improve efficiency and precision in healthcare practices. In the Argentine city of Córdoba, Dr. Gustavo Nari from Hospital Transito Caceres de Allende has teamed up with Mirai3D. Mirai3D is a start-up in the field of biomedical engineering that focuses on 3D printing, virtual reality and advanced materials in the healthcare sector. The IDEX technology in the BCN3D Sigmax R19 3D printer allows the creation of biomodels for designing surgical plans to better understand the anatomy of clinical cases.
Where does 3D printing come from?
In oncological cases, complex and complex operations are required, in which doctors often have to navigate through and around the vital organs. Pre-operative planning gives doctors the basis for step-by-step planning of the operation. It also allows for preventive planning of any possible complications that may arise during the operation.
The combination of X-ray technology and 3D printing enables clinicians to use patient scans to create a virtual model of the area of interest. Such a model can then be printed according to realistic dimensions and sizes. IDEX technology is particularly advantageous in this case as the model can be printed from different materials to recreate different parts of the body such as bones and tissues. IDEX technology can also be used to print models of different colors to provide clinicians with visual assistance in different areas. This means more training for doctors to apply their knowledge and thoroughly understand the facts of a particular case.
The printed models can also be used to explain the procedure in detail to the patient or concerned family members in an easy-to-understand way.
BCN3D Sigmax R19
In this particular case, the patient is a 65-year-old woman with one hepatic metastasis in the right lobe and the other small in the left lobe. The patient's complex clinical history meant that it was extremely important to be meticulous and closely monitored during this operation. The patient had dual primary ovarian and colorectal tumor surgery and adjuvant therapy. In addition, she had extremely low values of congenital thrombocytopenia (from 16,000 to 25,000 platelets with normal levels above 150,000), meaning that it was necessary to reduce any major hemorrhages.
A BCN3D Sigmax R19 3D printer operating in the FFF technology and PLA filament was used to make the model. PLA material was the material of choice by Dr. Nari as it is economical and allows a variety of colors. The printer enabled them to print two colors simultaneously and led to better visual representation and subsequent understanding.
"I believe that in such cases, 3D printing technology becomes an extremely helpful tool." - Dr. Nari
Results in the operating room
In the operating room, Dr. Nari proceeded to perform the right hepatectomy along with a limited resection of the metastases associated with the left lobe. At this point, the physical 3D model was used along with the virtual one as a reference. The use of biomodels allowed the doctor to look at the problem of the tumor with the accompanying vascularization and physiological vascularization of the liver, reducing the time of surgery. This gave an exact reference to its vascular structure, which was particularly important due to its blood clotting pathology.
"By using this 3D model, the operation time could be reduced by approximately 45 minutes, resulting in a total operation time of 3 hours."
The patient herself benefited from the experience with 3D technology, because the confidence of the surgical team and their subsequent attention to detail ensured her safety. In addition, shorter surgery time means faster recovery as the patient spends less time under the knife, reducing the risk of complications or infections.
"Thanks to the model, we entered the office with much more confidence. Knowing the vascular anatomy and its relationship to the tumor makes it easier to plan surgery."
There are many advantages to combining 3D printing and X-ray technology, as shown in the above clinical case and the results of Dr. Nari. Dr. Nari continues his successful work with the Sigmax R19 3D printer and benefits from cost and time efficiency, short recovery times and increased confidence in his team.As for Mirai3D, they develop software for clinics and hospitals while pursuing the goal, which is the opening of an entire laboratory of 3D printing equipment. It is hard to imagine a more advantageous way of using 3D printing technology!