- Workshop presentation
- Open Access
State of the art: 3D printing for creating compliant patient-specific congenital heart defect models
© Schrot et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014
- Published: 16 January 2014
- Congenital Heart Disease
- Cardiac Magnetic Resonance
- Ventricular Septal Defect
- Congenital Heart Defect
- Complex Congenital Heart Disease
Congenital heart defects affect 8 out of every 1,000 newborns. Although many do not require immediate treatment, most cases will require a surgical or catheter based intervention during their lifetime. Complex cases can involve multiple anomalies. These unique and complex procedures require comprehensive pre-intervention or surgical planning. A state of the art method for creating patient-specific compliant models of heart anatomy from medical image data is investigated. A case study is explored to assess the feasibility of this modeling method.
Flexible 3D printing with the HeartPrint flex material process was successful for representing patient-specific anomalies. Transparency and the ability to cut/bend the model were important features to include in the model for clinical inspection and assessment. All were achieved. The model was sectioned prior to printing to provide the most optimal viewing plane of the anomalies. Complex congenital heart disease presents unique challenges to cardiac imagers, interventional cardiologists, and cardiac surgeons. The relationship of the ventricular septal defect, size of the systemic ventricle, and presence straddling tricuspid valve tissue were important to understand. In this case the model provided accurate anatomical definition of complex cardiovascular structures. This allowed for a more complete assessment for various surgical options. The presence of hypoplastic right ventricle when viewed by the 3D model confirmed the findings of our 2D studies and moved us away from a two ventricle repair and towards a Glenn shunt and Fontan palliation.
The HeartPrint process proved capable for timely providing clinicians with an accurate patient-specific model to aid in the pre-surgical planning for treatment of complex congenital heart defects. The use of 3D printing patient-specific models can be a powerful supplement to traditional imaging-only planning for complex congenital heart cases.
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