Patient’s Tongue Cancer Successfully Treated Thanks to 3D Printed Surgical Model from Anatomiz3D

Share this Article

dr-vishal

Dr. Vishal Rao

When a 53-year-old man called Mr. Ravi (a pseudonym) came to Bangalore’s Health Care Global (HCG) complaining of a mouth ulcer, at first that’s all the doctors found. As he had been treated for tongue cancer two years ago, however, an MRI was taken, and the results weren’t good – the tumor had returned, and it was much more extensive than anyone expected. Surgery would be required, and because the placement of the tumor made it difficult to isolate, it looked like doctors would have to remove a significant portion of the patient’s tongue.

Luckily for Mr. Ravi, surgical oncologist Dr. Vishal Rao of HCG had some experience with difficult surgeries – and with creative solutions. Dr. Rao is known for inventing an inexpensive voice box for people who have lost their ability to speak due to throat cancer; he’s also very familiar with the use of 3D printed surgical models in difficult operations. The surgical team called in Mumbai-based Anatomiz3D, a medical 3D printing company dedicated to the development of advanced 3D printed surgical guides, patient-specific implants and prosthetics.

Using the MRI scan, Anatomiz3D created a 3D model of the patient’s tongue with Materialise’s Mimics software. The software, which allows editing of MRI scan data, enabled them to digitally separate the tumor from the tongue and print them in two different colors, using a flexible material to mimic the organ’s properties.

“This is the first time globally, to the best of our knowledge, that such a procedure has been performed using flexible material differential 3D printing for soft tissues of the tongue,” said Dr. Rao.

tonguescan

The detailed, compound model allowed the surgeons to see the entire tumor and how it affected the tongue; they would have the printed model beside them as they operated to guide them so that they could ensure the removal of the full tumor. Once the cancer had been removed, a plastic surgery team led by Dr. Prashanth Puranik carefully reconstructed the patient’s tongue from thigh muscles, using the 3D printed model as a template for optimal cosmetic and functional results. The model would also be used in pre-surgical counseling, helping the patient himself to understand what would be happening during the surgery and recovery.

We’ve seen many, many cases of doctors using 3D printed models to aid in surgeries, but this one stands out for a few reasons. The tongue is a delicate organ that, if damaged at all, affects the patient’s ability to speak and eat. Repairing it takes a kind of precision that may not have been possible without such a detailed model that replicated the organ in both appearance and feel.

Secondly, oral cancer is an epidemic in India, according to Dr. Rao, thanks to the prevalence of chewing tobacco. Four out of every ten cancer cases diagnosed in the country are oral cancers, so improved medical treatments for mouth, tongue and throat cancers are desperately needed.

tongue

The patient’s tongue was printed in brown, while the tumor was printed in blue.

“While it’s our duty to look at preventive measures, we need to constantly innovate and help improve treatment paradigms and the quality of life,” said Dr. Rao. “We must create a benchmark for the world to follow rather than wait for the West to solve our problems.”

 Mr. Ravi’s case sets a great example for medical professionals not just in India, but all over the world – an example that shows that there are very few surgeries, no matter how complex, that can’t be done with the help of 3D printing. Discuss further in the 3D Printed Model for Cancer Surgery forum over at 3DPB.com.

Share this Article


Recent News

UNICAEN: New Bioprinted Tumor Models Help Researchers in France Study Its Biology

The End of the Road for Pot Dyeing in 3D Printing?



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

Daimler Buses Relies on DyeMansion for Color & Texture Quality in 3D Printed Spare Parts

While it took decades for the rest of the world to catch up, a handful of aerospace organizations, automotive industry leaders, and other innovators have continued to enjoy the inside...

DyeMansion Completes Beta Testing of VaporFuse Surfacing Technology for 3D Printed Parts

3D printing offers a world of infinite potential for innovation, as well as combinations of materials and finishing processes. DyeMansion is just adding to all that goodness now with VaporFuse...

Why Automated Post Processing Makes Manufacturing With 3D Printers Possible

In Material Extrusion (FDM), we can now use inexpensive machines to make dimensionally accurate & tough parts in various materials at low cost. These parts can fulfill many industrial and...

3D Printing News Briefs: May 26, 2019

This year’s RAPID + TCT ended late last week at the Cobo Center in Detroit, so we’re again starting off today’s 3D Printing News Briefs with more news from the...


Shop

View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.


Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our 3DPrint.com.

You have Successfully Subscribed!