3D Printing in Congenital Heart Disease: Transforming Healthcare One Child at a Time

Pediatric cardiothoracic surgeons and interventional cardiologists have a very challenging task: “translating two dimensional images into a three-dimensional figure, and then mentally planning how to change the heart structure,” says Dr. Charles Huddleston, a pediatric cardiothoracic surgeon at SSM Cardinal Glennon Hospital and SLUCare.  “Having a 3D model changes the game.”

Medical 3D printing is an exciting technology that is improving the lives of children and adults with congenital heart disease.  Perfect surgical repairs are required on hearts that may only be the size of a strawberry, include up to 7-8 defects at once, and must be performed within the very limited time the heart can be safely stopped. 

In this Best Practice White Paper learn how the interventional and cardiothoracic surgical teams at SSM Cardinal Glennon Hospital and SLUCare are using 3D patient-specific models to make more informed decisions and perform procedures and surgeries more effectively and more safely at less cost. Read why the treatment team has come to rely upon multi-material, multi-color PolyJet models to provide:

  • better visualization and understanding of the spatial relationships necessary to diagnosis and plan the optimal surgical intervention for complex CHD with actual case examples
  • precise device sizing, for example, a pulmonary valve in a young adult with Tetralogy of Fallot
  • enhanced patient and family education to permit an authentic informed consent and instill increased confidence in the medical team
  • ·on demand training of surgical residents and cardiac fellows

3D printed model of Tetralogy of Fallot with pulmonary atresia s/p Glenn procedure

Download the White Paper