News | April 22, 2015

3-D Printed Heart Model Instrumental in Helping St. Louis Toddler Breathe Easier

Medical team uses model to plan surgery to move heart vessels compressing the windpipe and esophagus

April 22, 2015 — 3D Systems announced that a 20-month-old toddler is breathing and swallowing easier thanks to a team of cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The team used a full-color 3-D printed replica of his heart to prepare for a delicate, 2.5-hour procedure at St. Louis Children's Hospital.

3DS features an end-to-end digital thread that integrates surgical simulation, training, planning and printing of anatomical models, surgical instruments and medical devices. The company has helped doctors in tens of thousands of complex medical cases to achieve better patient outcomes with faster surgeries.

Life-size, realistic models make it simpler for patients and families to grasp the details of complex medical procedures, and they provide healthcare practitioners with invaluable preparation for their work in the operating room. In this particular case, the surgical team needed to relocate heart vessels that were squeezing and compressing the toddler's windpipe and esophagus, causing obstruction of the airway that resulted in difficulty breathing and swallowing. The printed model helped the team familiarize themselves with the unique vessel structure they would face in surgery, and they were also able to use it when discussing the condition with the patient's parents.

Shafkat Anwar, M.D., a member of the pediatric cardiology team at Washington University who worked with 3DS to develop the model heart for this particular surgical procedure, said, "With 3-D printing, we were able to print a replica of the patient's heart anatomy, developed from medical imaging scans, and use that model to get a handle on what surgeons would be faced with in the OR and to communicate with the patient's parents and other team members."

For more information:

Related Content

Gecko Biomedical Receives CE Mark Approval for Setalum Sealant
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | September 19, 2017
Gecko Biomedical announced it has received CE Mark approval for its Setalum Sealant, allowing the company to market its...
ClearFlow Inc. Announces Positive U.S. Clinical Trial Results
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | September 08, 2017
September 8, 2017 — ClearFlow Inc.
Videos | Cardiovascular Surgery | July 19, 2017
This video educational session, provided in partnership with the American Society of Echocardiography (ASE), is title
Intensive Glycemic Control Program Produces Significant Per-Patient Cost Savings for CABG Surgery
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 25, 2017
A new study from Emory University observed a near-20 percent reduction in perioperative complications, a 1.2-day...
Risk of Heart Transplant Rejection Reduced by Desensitizing Patient Antibodies
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 23, 2017
The risk of heart transplant rejection can be reduced by desensitizing patient antibodies, according to research...
Scientists Show How Cells React to Injury From Open-Heart Surgery
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 04, 2017
Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute investigators have learned how cardiac muscle cells react to a certain type of injury that...
ERACS Session Highlights Need for Standardized Best Practices in Cardiac Surgery
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 02, 2017
The recently formed group Enhanced Recovery After Cardiac Surgery (ERACS) hosted an organizing session in Boston on...
ClearFlow Receives Frost & Sullivan New Product Innovation Award for PleuraFlow Technology
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 01, 2017
ClearFlow Inc. has received the prestigious 2017 Global Frost & Sullivan Award for New Product Innovation. The...
Edwards Intuity Elite sutureless aortic valve, first implants in Connecticut, WCHN, Western Connecticut Health Network
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | February 16, 2017
Western Connecticut Health Network (WCHN) cardiothoracic surgeons Cary Passik, M.D., and Robert Gallagher, M.D., were...
open-heart surgery, PCI, percutaneous coronary intervention, NOBLE trial, left main coronary artery disease, LMCAD, TCT 2016
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | November 03, 2016
Coronary artery bypass (CABG) surgery is the standard treatment for revascularization in patients with left main...
Overlay Init