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12-01-2017 | Review Article | Uitgave 2/2017 Open Access

Netherlands Heart Journal 2/2017

Structural and congenital heart disease interventions: the role of three-dimensional printing

Netherlands Heart Journal > Uitgave 2/2017
L. M. Meier, M. Meineri, J. Qua Hiansen, E. M. Horlick
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi: 10.​1007/​s12471-016-0942-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.


Advances in catheter-based interventions in structural and congenital heart disease have mandated an increased demand for three-dimensional (3D) visualisation of complex cardiac anatomy. Despite progress in 3D imaging modalities, the pre- and periprocedural visualisation of spatial anatomy is relegated to two-dimensional flat screen representations. 3D printing is an evolving technology based on the concept of additive manufacturing, where computerised digital surface renders are converted into physical models. Printed models replicate complex structures in tangible forms that cardiovascular physicians and surgeons can use for education, preprocedural planning and device testing. In this review we discuss the different steps of the 3D printing process, which include image acquisition, segmentation, printing methods and materials. We also examine the expanded applications of 3D printing in the catheter-based treatment of adult patients with structural and congenital heart disease while highlighting the current limitations of this technology in terms of segmentation, model accuracy and dynamic capabilities. Furthermore, we provide information on the resources needed to establish a hospital-based 3D printing laboratory.

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Netherlands Heart Journal

Het Netherlands Heart Journal wordt uitgegeven in samenwerking met de Nederlandse Vereniging voor Cardiologie en de Nederlandse Hartstichting. Het tijdschrift is Engelstalig en wordt gratis beschikbaa ...

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