Motorcycles, they are fun, exhilarating, but unfortunately can be very dangerous. One man from Wales in the UK found this out back in 2012 when he was involved in a serious motorcycle accident. the accident, which he does not remember, left him hospitalized for four months. Only 29 years old at the time, Stephen Power was in for a long recovery, which left the bone structure of his face pretty much shattered. He broke both cheek bones, his nose, jaw, and fractured his skull.
Because of the structural damage to his face, he also was left with facial deformities. These deformities affected his life in major ways and caused him to shy away from public appearances. In fact, Power would only go out wearing a hat and glasses to cover up the damage he suffered in the accident. Something needed to be done in order for Power to get his confidence back.
This is when Maxillofacial surgeon, Adrian Sugar, and his team at Morriston Hospital, Swansea, decided to try a new procedure to reconstruct Power’s face. The team took 8 hours in the operating room and used 3D printers to custom print models, guides, plates and implants for Power. The actual 3d printed plate which was used to hold the bones in place, and reshape Power’s face was printed in Belgium out of medical grade titanium.
The surgery was an amazing success.
“It is totally life changing. I could see the difference straight away the day I woke up from the surgery. I’m hoping I won’t have to disguise myself – I won’t have to hide away. I’ll be able to do day-to-day things, go and see people, walk in the street, even go to any public areas,” said Power in an interview with BBC.com
Doctors hope that this surgery will act as a case study and encourage other surgeons to look into 3D printing to reconstruct other patient’s facial deformities as well. As 3d printer prices decline and become even more precise, this should naturally occur within the medical industry over the next few years. Discuss Power’s surgery at 3DPrintBoard.
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