A new technique allows the creation of custom 3D bone implants. The implants fuse with the original bone until they are completely degraded.
Danish company Particle3D is revolutionizing the lives of patients in need of reconstructive surgery. A pioneer in the field, the company is using a new method for the 3D printing of light and personalized bone implants that merge with the skeleton until it slowly disappears.
Typically, implants are made from non-degradable materials, such as polymer or titanium. This new alternative offers a lower risk of infection and may even be used on astronauts traveling through space, writes SingularityHub.
The process used by Particle 3D begins with an x-ray of the patient’s bones. Subsequently, the data is inserted into a computer program that allows optimizing the implant design. Finally, the implant is personalized, printed and sent by the Danish company to the respective hospital.
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The implants created with this technique are porous, which allows the bones to grow naturally, with the implant degrading over time. Tests on pigs and rats were successful and showed that blood vessel and bone marrow developed in the implants as early as eight weeks later.
3D printing has been quite beneficial in healthcare. Surgeons can view and practice with 3D models of bones, body parts and organs before an operation. The advantages of this innovation include lower costs, the possibility of customization, less time to reach the market and distributed production.