Last month, doctors in east China’s Nanchang city used 3D printing technology for the first time to assist a complex cardiovascular surgery. Before outlining their final plan, a pre-operative evaluation team at the Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, in China’s Jiangxi Province, relied on 3D printing to simulate a transcatheter aortic valve replacement surgery on a high-risk elderly patient with severe aortic valve stenosis. Using 3D printing to conduct in vitro experimental simulations they were able to assess the risks related to the surgery. Compared to traditional planning, 3D printing technology has proven extremely useful in presurgical preparations, by converting the patient’s two-dimensional image plane data into a 1:1 full- size model that surgeons can use to visualize and standardize a very complex procedure. Under the leadership of Yanqing Wu, director of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Second Affiliated Hospital, a pre-operative evaluation team decided to first conduct in vitro experimental simulations to assess the patient’s risks during surgery before determining the operation strategy. His physicians had detected a mid- to high-risk STS score, short for Society of Thoracic Surgery score, a validated risk-prediction model for open surgery based on data from the STS National Adult Cardiac Surgery Database. The results of the in vitro TAVR surgery simulation experiments proved predictable enough to move on to the patient surgery.

Read the full article at | The Voice of 3D Printing / Additive Manufacturing