Stoke Ventures, a company leading the way in product launch services is excited to announce their latest venture, Stoke Med. With this launch, Stoke Med hopes to revolutionize the medical industry by providing patient specific 3D prints for procedure demonstration, planning, and practice starting early 2018.
While 3D printing is most commonly applied to prototyping and hobby use, it’s on the brink of having a huge impact on healthcare. Stoke Med is positioned to help surgeons better plan and practice for their procedures by giving them physical models to analyze. That can lead to more effective, less invasive, and cheaper care. Models are also perfect for demonstrating to patients exactly what will happen on the day of surgery, explain post-surgical care and therapy, and provide recommendations for preventative care. Surgical application specialties include Orthopedic, Maxillofacial, Oncology, and Cardiac.
Until now, patients have been diagnosed and treatment planned using 2D images generated from X-Rays or MRIs. Instead, Stoke Med offers an accurate, physical 3D model of the patient’s anatomy, generated from a standard CT scan, that can be viewed and manipulated by the surgeon and his/her team in person. With this new advancement in bio-medical engineering, surgeons are able to more quickly analyze the area of interest and see things on a physical model that might have been missed while reviewing 2D scan images. With that level of insight, surgeons can save time and money by doing faster, more accurate surgeries.
Researchers published a study called “Patient specific 3D models aid planning for triplane proximal femoral osteotomy in slipped capital femoral epiphysis” in the Journal of Children’s Orthopaedics, showing a 25 percent reduction in surgical time with the use of a patient specific model. That can save health care providers and patients thousands of dollars. Having 3D models can reduce the need for X-Rays and subsequent radiation exposure to patients, and in some cases they can eliminate the need for an MRI which is time-consuming and expensive. Unlike X-Rays, MRI images, or anything else confined to a flat sheet or computer screen, 3D models can be used beyond the planning process, for surgical practice. Imagine physically walking through every step of a surgery, or designing and fitting medical hardware with no guesswork. Surgeons can now get the fit just right pre-surgery, eliminating the need to make modifications to hardware during a time-sensitive surgery. Models also help with patient consent by giving them a clear understanding of exactly why something needs to be fixed, and how it will be done. Patients will start to ask for it, knowing they will receive better care with the use of 3D models.
The Stoke Med process starts by uploading patient CT scan data, typically DICOM files, to their quote page. That data is then processed by isolating the area of interest and filtering for the appropriate tissue type, such as bone. After processing is complete, a printable file is created, and a smooth, accurate physical model can be 3D printed.