The current landscape of 3D printing in oncological surgical interventions

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Keywords: 3D printing – surgery 

In 2018, Cancer Research UK reported that 17 million new cases of cancer were diagnosed worldwide, with 9.6 million cases resulting in death [1]. Typical treatment strategies may involve surgery, chemotherapies and radiotherapies, but emerging technologies have paved the way for more personalized approaches such as immuno-oncology, targeted or hormone therapies.

The consensus in many medical fields is that the future of care lies in personalization. Therefore, 3D printing and associated technologies have immense opportunities for wide-spread adoption in research, clinical and surgical environments, particularly when considering complex tumor resection procedures.

Tailored pre-operative consultations, surgical technique rehearsals and bespoke solutions for instruments and implants are all ways in which 3D printing technologies have been disrupting oncological surgical workflows. Some claim that 3D models improve outcomes, reduce overall costs and positively impact the patient experience in and out of the operating room, as evidence from research into a wide range of pathologies suggests that 3D printing is a welcome assistant for surgical teams [2].

>> Read the full Editorial via 3DMedLIVE 2019: 3D printing in surgery partner publication, Future Oncology

Source: Makin G. The current landscape of 3D printing in oncological surgical interventions. Future Oncol. doi: 10.2217/fon-2019-0476 (2019) (Epub ahead of print).

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