|Mia Ren |||Mar 30, 2016 12:41 PM EDT|
(Photo : Getty Images) A 3D-printed pink plastic skull sits finished in the da Vinci 3D printer at the XYZ stand at the 2015 IFA consumer electronics and appliances trade fair
Doctors from Hunan province in South China successfully performed a very delicate spine surgery using
3D printed bone.
Dr. Zhan Ruisen from the Third Hospital of Central South University where the operation was done, led
the surgical team.
According to Ruisen, the patient has a spinal deformity called spinal arthritis which gave him a severe
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"The man's height had decreased from 1.7 meters to 1.3 meters due to the deformity. Doctors cut parts
of his spine to restore him to an upright posture," Ruisen said.
The removed parts were replaced with 3D printed bones.
"The 3D printed nylon part is a precise model of the patient's spine, on which the position and depth of
the incision are marked. Fastened to the spine, it made the surgery much easier for doctors," Ruisen
The surgery was supposed to last for about 10 hours, but thanks to 3D technology, the operation time
was reduced to five hours.
Because of the delicate nature of the spinal cord and its densely-distributed nerves, the surgical team
had to perform the operation with the utmost precision as the tiniest mistake can paralyze the patient.
The patient was transferred to the general ward is expected to walk in a week.
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