Researchers create 3D printed medical implant that changes shape

Researchers install 3D-printed medical device so children have an easier time breathing.

Published Wed, Apr 29 2015 11:55 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:07 PM CST

US medical researchers have created a 3D printed medical device that is able to change shape and help improve breathing as a child grows. Researchers believe the device worked better than they originally imagined, and look forward to a future clinical trial.

Researchers create 3D printed medical implant that changes shape | TweakTown.com

The custom biomaterial was used to treat three children suffering from tracheobronchomalacia, a medical issue when airway walls are weak, causing them to collapse after a rough cough or unusual breathing patterns. The 3D-printed splints were tubes - both hollow and porous - that can be attached over impacted airways, giving them increased strength.

"This is the first 3D printed implant specifically designed to change shape over time to allow for a child's growth before finally reabsorbing as the disease is cured," said Dr. Glenn Green, associate professor of pediatric otolaryngology at the University of Michigan, and contributing author for the study, in a statement published by Reuters.

An experienced tech journalist and marketing specialist, Michael joins TweakTown looking to cover everything from consumer electronics to enterprise cloud technology. A former Staff Writer at DailyTech, Michael is now the West Coast News Editor and will contribute news stories on a daily basis. In addition to contributing here, Michael also runs his own tech blog, AlamedaTech.com, while he looks to remain busy in the tech world.

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