As additive manufacturing technology continues to make waves across different industries, the healthcare sector has seen some massive innovations in the last few years. Medical 3D printing has become a familiar concept in healthcare, improving treatments and other medical procedures.
Here are a few ways 3D printing is used in the medical industry.
3D printing enables the creation of sterile surgical instruments. 3D printers are used to produce various surgical tools and components, including scalpel handles, forceps, clamps, and hemostats. The additive manufacturing technology allows for greater precision, ensuring physicians have access to fine-tuned instruments that can be used for operating in tiny or sensitive areas with minimal risks.
3D printing lowers the costs of surgical instrument production. It’s a cost-effective alternative to traditional manufacturing methods and offers just as many, if not more, benefits.
3D printing also plays a pivotal role in medical research. It’s used to print models of organs, nerves, tumors, and various other operating sites to better understand surgical procedures. A recent study also used 3D-printed models of cancerous tumors for anti-cancer drug research.
3D printing facilitates surgical planning and education. It helps surgeons prepare for critical procedures and demonstrate to their students how to perform certain techniques. 3D printed models help physicians identify potential risks and obstacles and enable them to address those issues before the actual surgery for maximum efficacy.
3D printing is also widely used in the orthopedic field. The technology is used to produce customized prosthetic limbs to enhance the wearer’s comfort and cater to their specific needs. The 3D models developed through additive manufacturing directly correspond to the patient’s needs, making the limbs appear more natural and fit perfectly.
3D printing also provides patients with more affordable prosthetics. Moreover, it reduces the waiting time for acquiring prosthetic limbs and speeds up the process.