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: www.3dsystems.com

Related Content

Michigan Hospital Improves Post-CABG Outcomes Using Proactive Amiodarone Protocol
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | October 23, 2019
Proactive administration of amiodarone to patients recovering from a common heart surgery shows promise in preventing...
Gore Block Grant Supports SVS Quality Programs
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | October 17, 2019
W. L. Gore & Associates Inc. will support a new Society for Vascular Surgery (SVS) initiative to advance patient...
Heart and Lung Surgery Patients May Be at High Risk for Opioid Dependence

Image courtesy of the American Heart Association

News | Cardiovascular Surgery | August 22, 2019
The amount of opioids prescribed for patients after heart and lung surgery has a direct relationship with the risk for...
Keck School of Medicine Promotes Patient Diversity in Cardiac Surgery Clinical Trials
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | July 26, 2019
A highly competitive $4.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Heart, Lung and Blood...
Google Doodle Celebrates Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Pioneer René Favaloro
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | July 12, 2019 | Jeff Zagoudis, Associate Editor
Internet search engine giant Google unveiled a new Doodle on its homepage Friday, July 12, celebrating the life and...
Open Heart Surgery Outperforms Stents in Patients With Multivessel Disease
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | May 03, 2019
Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery may be the best treatment option for most patients with more than one...
SherpaPak Cardiac Transport System Cleared for Pediatric and Small Donor Hearts
Technology | Cardiovascular Surgery | February 01, 2019
Paragonix Technologies Inc. recently received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a design...
Transplanting Pig Hearts Into Humans One Step Closer. A pig heart, shown here, is very similar in size and anatomy to a human heart. For this reason, pigs are used extensively in pre-clinical animal testing for new implantable cardiovascular devices. If pig hearts could be used for human transplantation, it would greatly alleviate shortages of donor human hearts.

A pig heart, shown here, is very similar in size and anatomy to a human heart. For this reason, pigs are used extensively in pre-clinical animal testing for new implantable cardiovascular devices. If pig hearts could be used for human transplantation, it would greatly alleviate shortages of donor human hearts.

News | Cardiovascular Surgery | December 11, 2018
The scientific journal Nature recently published an article from Munich University Hospital which describes the long-...
Bilateral Artery Use Does Not Improve 10-Year CABG Outcomes
News | Cardiovascular Surgery | September 06, 2018
While it is firmly established that the use of one internal thoracic artery can improve life expectancy in coronary...
Overlay Init