Separated of twins, joined at the butt thanks to 3D printing technology

http://3dprint.com/71548/conjoined-twins-butt-3d-print/

twins2

Twins, Joined at the Butt, Will be Separated Tomorrow Thanks to 3D Printing Technology

3D printing has been used to change the lives of many people over the past several years. Whether it is for lending a hand in the rapid prototyping of products, creating prosthetic hands for children with upper arm differences, or allowing surgeons to perform high risk surgeries with much more ease than ever before, the technology is certainly providing ample benefit to society.

Back in February, we reported on a complex surgery that was undertaken in Texas to separate conjoined twins. To complete the surgery, a detailed medical model was created to aid surgeons in the delicate operation. Now doctors in China are doing the same.

twins3

Tomorrow (June 9), will be a huge day for one family in China, as their beautiful newborn conjoined twin girls will be separated from each other for the first time in their lives. Born on March 17 in Nanjing County of South Fujian, China, the twins were found to be conjoined at the buttocks area. In fact, they share part of the same digestive tract and portions of their anus. Like most surgeries which involve the separation of conjoined twins, it is an extremely risky and difficult operation.

The girls have been transferred to the Children’s Hospital of Fudan University, where the surgery will take place tomorrow. Surgeons opted to wait until the girls were 3 months old and weighed approximately 10kg in order to perform the risky surgery. In studies, this has been shown to be the best time to perform such an invasive procedure, as babies tend to be strong enough at this point, and their bodies are ready to heal on their own.

These twins are in good hands though, as in the past 15 years, the Children’s Hospital of Fudan University has successfully separated 7 sets of conjoined twins. On top of this, using CT scan data, the surgeons were able to create an accurate 3D printed replica of the twins which doctors were able to simulate surgery on. They have used this 3D printed model to perform a mock operation, and in the process were able to revise their “real” surgical plan to make it more efficient and safe. While it is the very first time that 3D printing was used in order to aid in the separation of twins at this hospital, the hospital has used 3D printing in the past for other surgeries.

The surgery will include the separation of the twins, as well as reconstruction of their perineums and the rectums.  Currently the twins share a little less than 1cm of the same anus. It will certainly be a difficult surgery, but with the help of 3D printing, the surgical team feels very confident.

As far as the cost of the surgery, it is very expensive, but the family got a helping hand from the “Angel Mother” charity, in the amount of 200,000 yuan (approximately $32,231).

twins1

Best of luck to these beautiful twin girls as they undergo quite an extensive surgery tomorrow. What do you think about the use of 3D printing in creating medical models for complicated surgeries like this? Discuss in the Conjoined Twins forum thread on 3DPB.com.

3dprint.com

by  | JUNE 8, 2015

Advertisements

3D printed a full-size working car !

http://3dprint.com/53532/chinese-3d-printed-car/

car10

Chinese Company 3D Prints a Full-size Working Car for Just $1770

3D printing is going big, not just in a metaphorical sense. We have seen 3D printed buildings and cars begin to emerge as innovators look to the potential that this technology could have in the future. We saw the world’s first 3D printed car, the Urbee created in 2013. Then last year, a company called Local Motors surprised us all by 3D printing their Strati car in record time. Since then, Local Motors has been quickly iterating upon the processes they use and have already accomplished the full 3D printing of the Strati in just 44 hours flat.  They are now in the process of opening up microfactories worldwide in hopes of 3D printing custom vehicles for clients.

car8

Now, one company based in Sanya City, China, called Sanya Sihai, has just accomplished the 3D printing of yet another car. This car’s body weighs an impressive 500kg (1102 pounds) and is completely electric powered. The manufacturers say that it took about a month and a half to build, with the 3D printing process taking about 5 full days. Unlike the Strati car though, the interior of this one is not 3D printed, nor does this vehicle compete with Local Motors when it comes to aesthetics.

“The density of the material is much lighter than that of the metal, only one-seventh or one-eighth,” explains Chief Designer Chen Mingqiao. “Lighter weight will help save energy in the future.”

car2

Printed in a “Tyrant Gold” filament, the car used an astounding 500kg of filament in the 3D printing process. In total, including 1000 yuan for electricity and labor, the car cost about 11,000 yuan ($1770) to build. The 3D printed body itself, is estimated to have cost about 10 yuan per KG of material, meaning it costs the manufacturer about 5000 yuan ($805) to fabricate.

car6

This “Tyrant Gold” car can seat two, and travel at speeds of up to 40km/h (25 MPH). It measures 3.6-meters long (11.9ft) and 1.63-meters (5.5ft) wide.  Obviously, this is a great accomplishment for the Chinese based company, but it doesn’t come close to competing with what Local Motors has done or continues to do with their vehicles. Not only does the Strati look better, and go faster (40 MPH), but it is also able to be 3D printed in just 44 hours, compared to this car which took 5 days to complete. The Strati also features many more 3D printed parts, other than just the car’s body, including its seats and chassis.

It should be interesting to see how quickly Sanya Sihai is able to develop this car further, and if they will actually mass produce these vehicles in the future. While Local Motors remains leaps and bounds ahead of them as far as 3D printed car manufacturing goes, it should be interesting to see how serious they are about creating their 3D printed vehicles. What do you think about this 3D printed car? Discuss in the Chinese 3D Printed Car forum thread on 3DPB.com.

car4

car7

3dprint.com

by  | MARCH 25, 2015