The medical industry has been ripe with 3D printing innovation, as numerous areas within the field have embraced the up and coming technology. Titanium implants were first introduced into the human body in the 1950’s with incredible results. The problem, however? One or two sizes do not fit all. Everyone’s bones are shaped differently and require custom implants to ensure a comfortable and efficient fit. This is where 3D printing technology comes into play, and we are only at the tip of the iceberg in terms of the technology’s capabilities.
Late last month, we covered a story about a 32 year-old Australian man named Richard Stratton. Stratton had jaw issues ever since he suffered an injury as a child. Something finally needed to be done as he no longer had adequate movement of the jaw and things were only getting worse as he aged. In came 3D Medical Limited with a customized 3D printed titanium jaw, the first such implant to ever be placed into a human being within Australia.
Since then, Stratton has been doing great, pleased with both the the look of his newly structured face, as well as the comfortable, relatively painless fit that has enabled a new range of motion, all thanks to the implant that was provided by 3D Medical Limited.
Today we got word that this procedure will not be the last. 3D Medical Limited, who listed on the American Stock Exchange and raised $4 million in February of this year, has received an order for 25 similar implants. The implants will be created over a period spanning the next 12 months.
“We’ve only been listed for four months and already doing this one jaw has validated out entire business model because we’ve had to deal with the health insurers, the hospitals, with the surgical teams,” company chairman Nigel Finch told Business Insider. “We gone through the end-to-end process of the production of the implant and the successful outcome and what we know is that it works on the implant side.”
Although the company who placed the orders will not be disclosed due to a confidentiality agreement, Finch expects to see continued orders coming through over the remainder of the year.
“Now we’ve just taken an order for 25 more implants,” he stated. “This is what we’ll continue to see, a growth in implants.”
3D Medical Limited seems to be on their way to becoming a powerhouse within the 3D printing and imaging medical space. They currently offer a variety of valuable solutions such as their ‘Touch’ branded service, which turns CT and MRI data into 3D printed medical models, as well as their Echopixel holographic projection technology, enabling doctors to manipulate virtual models in 3D space. This recent deal is certainly a big one for a company trying to prove themselves since going public just over four months ago.
Let’s hear your thoughts on this recent order and what it may mean for the future of medical implants. Discuss in the 3D Medical Limited forum thread on 3DPB.com.