Congenital heart defects are one of the most common causes of death among infants. This is why doctors are constantly devising new methods of teaching how to detect underlying heart issues. 3D-printed heart replicas will allow students to familiarize themselves with features of both healthy and defective hearts.
To suit the needs of doctors, medical students and universities, a Cracow-based group of doctors led by Assoc. Prof. Marcin Wiechec of the Jagiellonian University teamed up with 3D Plus, a division of G2A.COM, to develop a 3D heart model illustrating congenital heart defects. The co-operation between Dr. Wiechec’s team and a group of industrial design specialists led by Lukasz Tabakowski within the MWU 3D MODELS project, resulted in highly-detailed replicas showing various defects, ranging from the most common to the most difficult to detect.
“So far our students were limited to diagnosed cases and only if the patient consented to the presence of additional doctors during the medical examination”, says Dr. Wiechec. “Our replicas will allow gynecologists to gain practical knowledge and skills, which will help them diagnose particular defects during ultrasounds.”
Every model produced by 3D Plus for MWU 3D MODELS is hand-painted and consists of 8 elements that can be disassembled for a very detailed analysis of each defect.
“These models are printed using SLA technology and made of photopolymer, which guarantees an incredibly detailed and exact replica of the organ’s features”, explains Patryk Kadlec, Strategic Development Manager at G2A.COM. “The technology cuts production costs by half and speeds up the whole process,” he adds.
3D heart prints are currently available to order. Thanks to short print times (3 hours on average), their production can be custom-tailored to individual customer’s needs.