General Electric put on stream 3D-printing artificial organs

August 30, 2017
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Engineers General Electric Healthcare are working to simplify 3D printing of artificial organs and tissues for operations scheduling and in the future, for transplantation.

Today is a very complex and lengthy process that requires repeated CT scan of the body and several days of work on data conversion.

How does the modern 3D-visualization in medicine?

Here is just one example. Eric Endicott in Phoenix was pregnant with my son Caden, when cardiology Children’s heart center Phoenix (Phoenix Children’s Heart Center) found on ultrasound congenital defect of the left ventricle.

Immediately after birth of the child necessitated a serious operation. Eric Endicott was one of the first to feel the advantages of new technologies of General Electric. According to ultrasonography (even without CT!) engineers were able to recreate detailed 3D model of the body, allowed to understand the nature of the defect and to choose the optimal tactics of surgery.

The result: 100% success of the operation.

The future of surgery and transplantation begins in a futuristic laboratory, GE Healthcare, located in the tiny town of Waukesha, Wisconsin. Head of the laboratory senior engineer at high-tech production Jimmy beach (Jimmie Beacham), an expert in the field of 3D printing organs.

“Today, when it comes to 3D printing the on-order data processing takes from one to three weeks. We are working hard to do that with one mouse click,” explains his goal by the beach. This is a difficult goal.

Modern CT scanner GE CT Revolution per 1 second of work generates and sends the amount of data that is comparable to 6000 the HD movies You download online!

“Imagine how much time you need to convert this data to a file for a 3D printer to print a new body with higher accuracy and detail! Every day we improve our program to put the production of artificial organs “on stream”. It turns out all the better: in our lab already has a liver, a tree, aorta, lung, and even stop,” says the engineer.

Recently, General Electric founded the GE Additive division, specializing in the development of high precision 3D printers to print complex structures, like blood vessels, organs and tissues. Jimmy beach works closely with that structure: first develop a “soft”, and the second corresponding hardware. Huge investments General Electric every day bring mass 3D printing of organs. “We know what tremendous benefit to get doctors and patients from this technology.

Each person is tailored differently. When the surgeon prepares for the procedure, he should not be confronted with surprises. We will create workstations for surgeons that allow to practice for each specific patient, and apparatus for the mass production of bodies” – outlined horizons of the project by the beach. While printed under the order authorities can serve as a teaching aid for a surgeon or for a visual explanation of the disease to the patient. In the future, the technology of 3D printing will allow production of scaffolds for cultivation of these working bodies for the purpose of transplantation.

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