Body Parts That Can Be Made With A 3-D Printer

There is a lot you can do to keep your body functioning normally. Unfortunately, despite maintaining a good diet and regular exercise, there are some things that fall out of your control, leaving you to the hands of medical professionals. Thanks to modern advances in technology, many issues can now be addressed with the use of 3-D printing. By incorporating these machines into their medical planning, doctors are able to provide their patients with new body parts, as well as advance their own understanding of how certain procedures can done more safely and efficiently.

Blood Vessels

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The ability for blood to travel around your system is extremely important in maintaining proper health. Blood vessels essentially keep your organs running and help transport oxygen and nutrients throughout your entire body.

Unfortunately, issues often arise when it comes to transplants. By building vessels with a 3-D printer, doctors are given more support in terms of getting an appropriate amount of blood flowing through the new organ. This new technology offers a lot more hope to those waiting to get a new organ put in, and it greatly increase the chances that everything will function normally.

Heart Valves

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A person has many unique characteristics. Whether it our eye color, shoe size, or hair style, we all have identifying features that make us who we are. While external characteristics are more obvious, the internal aspects are a bit harder to access. There is now technology that can recreate an exact replica of a person’s heart and heart valves for doctor’s to study more intensively.

This process is very beneficial in the medical field. When given the ability to view a model of the heart, the need to physically cut into someone is eliminated. The doctors can determine beforehand what types of procedures a person would be more susceptible to and it allows them to prepare for any issues that may occur in future surgeries.

Skin

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When it comes to skin transplants, burn victims are especially benefited by this advance in technology. By taking healthy skin and using it to replace the affected area, people are given the opportunity to heal more quickly while reducing the risk of infection and minimizing the likelihood of developing noticeable scars.

With the use of 3-D printers, medical personnel can spray multiple layers of skin over a burn. As this technology advances, doctors are capable of treating even the more severe burns. This can make all of the difference in allowing a burn victim to go back to their normal routine, feeling like their old self.

Ears

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Many times those that suffer hearing loss do so because of an irregularity of how their ear is formed. By simply changing the shape of their ear or by adding more to an underdeveloped ear, hearing can be improved dramatically, changing a person’s life and helping them to function more safely in the world.

Scientists have discovered a way to build ears with the use of existing cells. When the new ear is being formed, it is inserted with cartilage cells and collagen from actual humans. This advance allows the transplant a higher success rate since the ear is formed from actual cells, rather than other materials.

Kidneys

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Kidney transplants are all-too-common and the trickiest part seems to be finding an appropriate match for those that need one. Kidneys are essential in keeping your body running efficiently. They filter the waste out of your body and without a well-functioning one the waste piles up inside of you, putting you at an increased risk of infection.

While the technology is not completely developed yet, experts have gotten very close to being able to create kidneys for those in need of new ones. Once the process is perfected, doctors will be able to create perfect matches by using the patient’s actual cells to build the kidney.

Bones

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While the bones in your body are incredibly durable, accidents do happen causing them to break. The types of breaks a bone can suffer vary from case to case, but often times they are quite difficult for doctors to repair. The road to recovery can be a long one as different techniques are applied throughout the patient’s healing time, thus delaying the entire process.

Doctors are now given the capability of producing exact models of these fractures, allowing for time to study them and discover the best solutions as to how the bone can be reconstructed. They can also use the models to try and find new and more efficient methods to repair these complex breaks, rather than remain dependent on more traditional techniques.

Liver Cells

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When it comes to trying out new and possibly effective types of medication, there are always risks involved. While a drug could provide a patient with the relief that they desire, it could also cause potentially fatal side effects. Unfortunately, there is no way to test this reaction out prior to having the patient consume the product.

With new advances in 3-D printing, this has changed. Doctors can now replicate liver cells and use them to test different medications without putting their patients at risk. This eliminates the option of using humans as test subjects, while allowing professionals to track how a person’s body may react to a certain type of drug.

Arms

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When accidents cause the loss of limbs, a person’s life is changed forever as they are forced to adjust how they go about their day-to-day activities. Adapting to life without a limb is definitely possible, but the challenges involved can put a lot of strain on a person’s physical and mental health.

Science has made some tremendous leaps as far as creating entire limbs with the use of 3-D printing. Those who have lost limbs are then given the capability to go through their life with a higher degree of independence. Eventually, professionals hope to give people full control of their new limbs through merely the use of brain power, just as if they never lost a limb at all.

Vertebrae

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Spinal injuries can cause major issues in a person’s lifestyle, and dealing with spine issues can be a very delicate process on the part of the doctor. One slip up could mean affecting a person’s ability to walk or even use their arms and fingers.

Fortunately, advances have been made that provide possible solutions for some of these issues. With the capability of making exact replicas of a damaged or shifting spine, doctors can make more accurate analyses of what kind of treatment would be best for the patient, without putting them at risk. More recently, surgeries have actually been done giving people new vertebrae created from a 3-D printer.

Skulls

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Without proper use of the brain, we lose who we are as individuals. The brain works non-stop, continuously sending commands to all of the other parts of your body. This ensures everything is working together and functioning normally, even when you are asleep. Since the brain plays such a vital role in your body, keeping it adequately protected is important.

If your skull gets damaged, then your brain is exposed and much more likely to suffer injuries. When it comes to repairing this damage, scientists have made some amazing advances. By using 3-D printing devices, doctors can create safe and cosmetically-sound skulls for those that need them.

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    HealthPrep Staff