3D Printing in Healthcare
From lifesaving 3D-printed organs to life-changing custom prosthetics, 3D printing for healthcare and medical applications is changing patient outcomes.
How is 3D printing used in Healthcare?
The concept of 3D printing human tissue and organs isn’t a storyline from a science fiction movie. Today, healthcare professionals and scientists are harnessing 3D printing technology to revolutionize medicine, from patient-specific bones and prosthetics to functioning organs.
FDM printing technology and flexible TPU 3D printing material are widely used for prosthetics and orthotics (shoe insoles). TPU is strong enough to withstand impact but stretchy enough to not inhibit mobility. TPU is also used to create 3D-printed organs used by doctors to perform pre-surgery prep or to test new surgical methods.
From hospitals to universities, the research and development around 3D printing in medicine is gaining traction and powering new advances and applications for patient care.
3D Printing Use Cases in Healthcare
Every body is unique, and 3D printing allows previously unrealized customization when it comes to prosthetic limbs and other healthcare applications.
3D-Printed Medical Prototypes: Before an operation, surgeons take scans of the patient to understand what they might encounter during surgery. These scans help them plan how to best approach the procedure. But with 3D printing, doctors can perform pre-surgery prep or test a unique surgical method on a lifelike replica of the patient’s actual organ. While TPU’s flexible properties are ideal for organ prototypes, you can use rigid TPU to make comfortably fitting prosthetic limb sockets.
Custom-Built Prosthetics: A prosthetic finger, hand or limb isn’t organic material, but it becomes a part of you. And when it’s custom-fitted to your body, it’s going to perform better. 3D-printed prosthetic pieces are easy to design for each individual.
NinjaTek® Filaments in Healthcare
Our 3D printing filaments are widely used in medical applications, like flexible and rigid requirements for prosthetics and realistic replications of organs.
- Use NinjaFlex® for organ printing (pre-surgery prep or teaching hospitals), braces for joints, prosthetics and orthotics.
- Use Cheetah® for dental arm clips, braces for joints, prosthetics and orthotics.
- Use Armadillo® for prosthetic sockets and shells.
- Use Chinchilla™ for prosthetic liners and organ printing (pre-surgery prep or teaching hospitals).
FAQs about 3D Printing in Healthcare
Can you 3D print organs?
Yes. It’s called bioprinting. At this time, NinjaTek doesn’t provide 3D printing materials that are safe for internal use, but we have a number of ways to use TPU in healthcare applications.
Can you sterilize 3D-printed parts?
Yes, you can sterilize or autoclave most 3D-printed parts, but it depends on the type of material used. For example, NinjaFlex and Cheetah hold up best to the heat, while Armadillo would not.
3D Printing by Industry
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