AMS Spring 2023

3D Printed Skull Model Helps Surgeons Rebuild Man’s Face After Fall

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3D Model of Jon’s Face Before and After Surgery

Imagine falling four stories from a hotel, and landing flat on your face. This is exactly what happened to one 27 year old British man as he and his fiance were vacationing in Barcelona. Jon Fenton was standing on a chair on his hotel room’s balcony, in order to get a better view of the city. He lost his balance and plunged approximately 35 feet, landing on his face. His face acted as a crumple zone, protecting his brain from any major trauma. His face was shattered, and all four limbs broken.

Daren Forward, who is consultant in orthopedic trauma at the Queen’s Medical Centre, University of Nottingham, said: ‘Mr Fenton had basically broken everything – his case was pretty much up there with as bad as it gets. All four limbs were severely broken.”

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Fenton After Surgery

When Mr. Fenton woke several days later, he didn’t look anything like he had prior to the fall. Surgeons quickly drew up a plan to reconstruct his face. In order to do this, they first 3D printed out a model of his shattered skull. From there, with the help of Materialise’s Mimics Innovation Suite, they were able to come up with a plan, using the model as a guide, to reconstruct Fenton’s face in a 14 our long procedure.

Dr Dilip Srinivasan, who oversaw the operation, stated, ‘We make the model and that gives us the exact view of the injury that we have. From there we can plan things and get ready to operate. It was 14 hours – it’s a big undertaking. We had to break nearly all the bones in his face. It’s like a jigsaw.”

Fenton, still has work to do before he is fully recovered, and will likely undergo further operations, however the results have been quite remarkable.

‘Six months ago everything was looking really bad but his face operation has gone so well and he looks so much better. Before he was quite disfigured,” said his fiance, Rachel.

Without the guide of the 3D printed model, this procedure would not have been as successful as it was.  3D printing is really changing the face of reconstructive surgery, both via the printing of implants, as well as in this case, modeling the areas to be worked on.  Discuss this story at 3DPrintBoard. Source: DailyMail

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