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Precision Medicine,3D Printing To Meet Patient-specific Needs

Dec 16, 2019

The domestic medical industry's application of 3D printing technology began in the late 1980s. It was mainly used to rapidly manufacture 3D medical models. At that time, 3D printing technology was mainly used to help doctors communicate with patients, accurately judge the condition, and perform surgical planning. It can be said that China's exploration of 3D printing technology application in the medical industry has a long history, and it has gone deeper along with the development of 3D printing technology.

In recent years, with the development of 3D printing technology and the growth of demand for precision and personalized medical treatment, the application of 3D printing technology in the medical industry has been significantly developed in terms of breadth and depth. In terms of breadth of application, from the initial rapid manufacturing of medical models, it has gradually developed to 3D printing directly manufacturing hearing aid shells, implants, complex surgical instruments and 3D printed medicines. In terms of depth, the development of 3D-printed inanimate medical devices has led to the development of bioactive artificial tissues and organs.

 3D printing application breakdown

Medical model

3D printing technology is very intuitive to restore the specific conditions of the lesion, effectively reduces the risk of surgery, and solves the confusion of patients and family members during the operation. For example, most of the current CT and MRI examination results in medicine seem to be black-and-white light and shadow. There is a certain fuzzy boundary for the accurate judgment of difficult lesions. It is applicable to the software based on the patient's CT or MRI data before surgery The 3D data model printed on 3D is then printed out by a 3D printer to obtain an accurate medical model, so that the doctor can intuitively see the 3D structure of the surgical site before the operation, which helps the doctor to plan the surgical plan. Especially for complex surgery, it helps reduce the risk of surgery and improve the success rate of surgery.


According to reports, in 2015 Shanghai First People's Hospital used 3D printing technology to perform a live liver transplant for a patient suffering from congenital autoimmune liver cirrhosis and portal hypertension. In order to accurately formulate the surgical plan before surgery, 3d printing technology was used. The 3D printing presents the patient's hepatobiliary and pancreatic organs and the corresponding lesions in the form of 1: 1 "physical objects" in front of the doctor. By accurately assessing the three-dimensional spatial relationship between the lesion range and adjacent organ tissues, real-time comparison is performed during the operation. By adjusting the 3D printed model and placing it in the best anatomical position, the key parts can be quickly identified and located, providing intuitive real-time navigation for the key steps of the operation. By accurately positioning the lesions and blood vessels and guiding the joining of important vessels in real time, the accuracy of the operation is improved and the risk of the operation is effectively reduced.

Surgical guide

The surgical guide is an important tool for doctors to assist in the operation. 3D printed surgical guides are of great significance as an important tool to assist surgery. As a powerful tool to achieve precise surgery, the surgical guide is based on three-dimensional reconstruction and surgical simulation. It is digitally designed and 3D printed to help doctors perform precision surgery during the operation, effectively improve the accuracy of the operation, and shorten the operation time.



3D printed surgical guides are more cost effective in the following situations:

-Complex designs that cannot be achieved with traditional methods

-Meet the individual needs of unique diseases or patients

-Functionally integrated design

3D printing technology is particularly suitable for manufacturing profiled or personalized guides.


Rehabilitation equipment

With the rapid development of digital technology and medical technology, 3D printing technology has been widely used in the medical field. With the help of 3D printing technology, doctors can turn virtual images into solid models, creating a new approach to surgery and subsequent rehabilitation that is different from traditional methods, bringing new ideas and working models to the medical field. In terms of hand surgery rehabilitation, 3D printing technology can fully simulate the characteristics of the patient's rehabilitation site. Individualized rehabilitation braces made by 3D printing can increase the individualized precision of the brace and enable patients to obtain "private custom" Rehabilitation experience. 3D printed rehabilitation appliances include orthopedics and bionic hands, personal mobility aids, communication and information aids, personal medical aids and other rehabilitation aids. The real value brought is not only the realization of precise customization, but also the realization of accurate and efficient digital manufacturing technology instead of manual production, and shortening the production cycle. 3D printed rehabilitation aids occupy a very important position in modern medicine as a personalized auxiliary treatment method, and the prospect is very bright.


Oral Dentistry

In recent years, the rapid development of digital technology and its application in oral clinical medicine, various three-dimensional imaging and optical scanning technologies have enriched the access to oral clinical data, and 3D printing technology has become one of the hotspots in the application of oral medicine. Many prescient dental clinics and laboratories have introduced digital dental technology to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Light curing 3D printing technology is widely used in the clinical diagnosis and treatment of dental prosthesis. It is commonly used in making dental models such as clinical diagnostic models, mechanic working models and cushion pressing models, such as guide plates, temporary dental crowns, orthodontics. 3D printing digital technology can be integrated with dental digital processes to achieve accurate and efficient production.


medical instruments

Like other products, medical devices need to produce prototypes for design verification during the R & D stage of new products. 3D printing is an economical and rapid method of product prototype manufacturing. Light-cured 3D printing is widely used in medical devices due to its high accuracy and good molding surface quality. It provides effective solutions for products and can complete rapid prototype manufacturing. , And even mass production.


In recent years, government departments at all levels in China have continuously introduced a number of policies to support the development of the 3D printing industry. So far, a relatively stable support system for additive manufacturing policies has been formed. Thanks to policy support, in the medical industry, the commercial value of 3D printing has been continuously released, and the layout of medical service providers in the 3D printing industry has also accelerated.