Northwestern University researchers push medical 3D printing to the limit with new stents that offer patient customization and anti-coagulation
Traditionally, heart surgeons have to estimate the correct size of a heart stent for their patients. With ant margin of error there is enhanced risk for patients. In addition to the risk of stent movement, 1-2% of heart patients suffer from blood clots soon after their stents are implanted.
Cardiovascular medicine has just been advanced significantly thanks to scientists at Northwestern University. They have developed 3D-printed stents that are not only biodegradable, they are customizable and maintain anti-coagulative properties. Using a polymer with anti-oxidant properties, the researchers at Northwestern were able to print heart stents using micro-stereo-lithography printing in a process they are calling microCLIP (Micro Continuous Liquid Interface Production).
Stereo-lithography prints objects using light to cure a liquid resin and is employed at Voxel Magic whenever clients require finer details than extrusion printers can offer. In the case of the print stents, stereo-lithography allows microscopic customization that creates stents that contour to a patient’s natural blood vessel shape. This doesn’t just prevent complications that could arise from a bad fit. The citrus-based polymer also inhibits blood clot formation.
As the varied uses for additive manufacturing compound, so to does its efficiency. As if all these breakthroughs for 3D printed heart stents weren’t enough, one hundred stents can be printed simultaneously in just 4 minutes, but that’s no excuse for ordering that double bacon cheeseburger! =c)
If you are interested in 3D Printing and Rapid Prototyping services and consulting
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