At Arizona State University, the next generation of surgical models are being printed. Research associate Justin Ryan is helping surgeons at the Children’s Heart Center at Phoenix Children’s Hospital (PCH) by taking cardiac CT scan data and turning it into 3D models.
Once rendered in 3D, the model is sent to a 3D printer where a multi-color model is produced in gypsum. According to RaisingArizonaKids, “The printing process itself takes about three hours. When it is finished, Ryan brushes the excess powdery material away to reveal the model. “From there, we do a bit of post-processing, but in another hour after that, we can hand it off to the doctor. They can view it, and make their decisions on surgery.”
Daniel Velez, a congenital heart surgeon at PCH has seen the value in 3D printing technology. “To be able to tell the parents more precisely what I’m going to do, and what I’m going to encounter—even though I do tell them about variations and variabilities to the plan—I’m more at ease and more certain,” Says Velez.
Watch a Video of the Process Below:
Images and Video Courtesy of RaisingArizonaKids