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3D Printed Heart Model for Better Cardiological Treatment

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Published on : Nov 20, 2014

According to research carried out by the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2014, surgeons will be able to treat complex heart disorders in patients, with the help of a three dimensional experimental printed model of the heart. For surgical planning, most cardiac surgeons make use of two dimensional images of the heart taken by MRI, ultrasound, and X-ray. But the problem is that these images fail to show the structural complications in the chambers of the heart that are a result of congenital heart diseases. Congenital heart disorders are very different from heart diseases that develop at a later stage in a person’s life. 

With the aid of the standard two dimensional images as a guide in the background, doctors will be able to develop 3 dimensional model of the heart with the help of different types of materials like ceramic and plaster in order to bring out the most complicated structural cardiological anomalies. This three dimensional structural modeling of the heart will ensure that surgeons make better and improved decisions before going into the operation theatre. This way, the surgeons will be well prepared while conducting surgeries. 

According to doctors and researchers, a model of the heart promotes better understanding of the complications as against two and three dimensional images of the heart. 

Researchers incorporated an inexpensive composite material which was plaster like to create the models of the hearts of a 20 year old woman, a 3 year old boy, and a 9 month old girl all of whom suffered from complicated heart diseases. And after studying and analyzing these heart models, the surgeons were able to treat the heart anomalies with much success. 

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