This week you were introduced to implants and how surgeons are changing their practice to take advantage of the new technologies.

Peter’s idea to implant a titanium heel was conceived, designed, refined and delivered in a time frame that those involved in old-fashioned manufacturing could not have imagined.

This week the importance of design has been highlighted. Turning Michael’s sketches into 3D structures via CAD and using design to ensure light weight and high mechanical strength in the implanted heel ….absolutely beautiful.

Again you will have seen the importance of:

  • identifying the need

  • creating the design

  • selecting the appropriate materials, and

  • choosing the best method of 3D printing

We have also discussed some of the limitations of current 3D printing technologies. The limitations in feature size that we have encountered in the glaucoma implant work emphasise the need for the development of new printing technologies.

Next week we will confront new challenges. We will see where we are with the use of 3D printed structures to facilitate tissue regeneration.

Can we regenerate cartilage?

Can we regenerate skin?

To do so we will need to 3D print stem cells and biologically active molecules.

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This article is from the free online course:

Bioprinting: 3D Printing Body Parts

University of Wollongong