Drs have implanted a 3D-printed ribcage in an actual human being

3D Printing continues to prove to be very versatile with many, many uses.  But 3D printing body parts is likely the most amazing thing I’ve heard about.

From MSN:

© Provided by Quartz a 3d-printed breastplate and ribs

3D printing seems to be finding a niche in medicine. The latest feat: Two weeks ago, doctors implanted a 3D-printed titanium sternum and ribs into a patient in Spain. According to CNET, he’s doing well.

The patient is suffering from a form of cancer that formed tumors in his chest cavity. To get rid of them, doctors at Salamanca University Hospital needed to cut out a section of his ribs, along with his breastplate. Often, doctors would replace the ribcage with a flat piece of titanium—which can actually loosen over time—but 3D printing allows for a more customized implant. The team at Salamanca took CT scans of the patient’s ribcage and used those images both to show surgeons exactly where to cut, and to create a 3D model to print replacement parts.

The team contracted Anatomics, an Australian medical company, to figure out how to print the file. Anatomics sent the 3D files to the Australian government’s3D-printing lab at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). The lab’s printer prints by using a high-powered electron beam to melt metal powder into layers. The result was a titanium object that looks less like ribs and more like something you’d see in a car’s engine, and fit perfectly into the patient’s ribcage.

Beyond being able to create truly personalized solutions to medical problems, 3D printing allows doctors to rapidly prototype ideas. In the US, doctors are using 3D printing to produce models for doctors to inspect and figure out the best plan for surgeries, without any invasive biopsies needed. Researchers are also working on 3D-printed tissue implants, but those haven’t been approved for use in humans yet. 3D printing, however, has started to make some regulatory inroads in the US. Last month, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first 3D-printed drug for consumption, and the FDA is researching more safe ways to bring the technology into the human body.

3D printing, especially in medicine, is still in its infancy. The Salamanca team’s achievement may well pave the way for more 3D-printed parts in humans, and perhaps America’s obsession with elective cosmetic surgery may one day extend to 3D-printed improvements. Hopefully no-one tells the Canadian government.

To learn how you can get started learning about 3D printing, contact Admissions by phone at 401-467-7744 ext. 3357 or by email at NEITAdmissions@neit.edu.

3D-Printing Used to Replicate Human Blood Vessels

Scientists from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Mass., have successfully used 3D-printing to replicate human blood vessels.

The experiment marks the first time that synthetic blood vessels were created, according to RT.

Blood vessels are extremely fragile, and are more delicate than anything that has been synthetically bio-printed before.

“Creating artificial blood vessels remains a unique challenge in tissue engineering,” said Ali Khademhosseini, biomedical engineer and project leader. “We’ve attempted to address this challenge by offering a unique strategy for vascularization of hydrogel constructs that combine advances in 3D bio-printing technology and biomaterials.”

“In the future, 3D printing technology may be used to develop transplantable tissues customized to each patient’s needs, or be used outside the body to develop drugs that are safe and effective,” Khademhosseini said.

via 3D-Printing Used to Replicate Human Blood Vessels : Tech : Headlines & Global News.