FibreTuff has been evaluated by leading service centers for anatomical bone models using Ultimaker 3D Printers. To replace cadaver work radiopacity, good screw retention is desired with a degree of flexibility.
These functional anatomical bone models are used at Universities, Medical Centers for clinical evaluations and physicians in preparations for surgery. interesting about your business here.
3D printed FibreTuff has "bone like" feel and appearance with radiopacity. See picture. The FibreTuff compound used to achieve the radiopacity seen in the CT Scan of the vertebrae. 3D LifePrint evaluated materials they have used for anatomical bone models and found FibreTuff to be more bone like than any other materials presently used today. See website www.3dlifeprints.com for more information
Bone gets brittle after being removed from body. Body fluids promote better elasticity as well as impact, FibreTuff is hydrophilic and reacts to moisture very similar. Other 3D printed materials like PLA will absorb and store moisture until the composition breaks down. FibreTuff will absorb moisture to a point and promote less brittleness and improve impact. Picture is a calcaneus bone FDM print made with FibreTuff I and a photo of 1st day soaking in water .
Polymers like PEEK (Polyetherether Ketone) have gained increasing acceptance as a high performance implant material. Significant advantages over metals include: the elimination of imaging artefacts, the ability to view tissue/bone growth and repair using x rays (which can often be obscured with metal parts) and, more generally in this and other applications, the avoidance of allergic tissue reaction to metallic ions. It is believed that stress shielding with metals can lead to processes of localized bone remodeling and mass loss, resulting in implant loosening or in weakening of the bony area around the implant, which ultimately may lead to failure. In diagnostics, as well as in postoperative inspection, it is increasingly important to monitor the healing process by modern imaging technologies.
In an X-ray image, the intensive shadow produced by a metal implant overlaps the area of importance for the surgeon, making it difficult, or even impossible, to adequately inspect. This is similar in CT -imaging where metal implants create artfacts. A PEEK polymer is transparent to X-rays and there are no artefacts created in CT scans. Because plastics are non-magnetic MRI technologies still can be used with patients that have received a plastic implant. As for allergic reactions to nickel and other metal ions, owing to the high purity of certain polymers / compounds the total amount of metallic ions is very low (ppm and ppb levels) so no allergic reactions are to be expected.
X-ray markers made from tantalum are suitable for direct implantation in the human body as well as radio-graphic indicators in implants made from low density materials like e.g. PEEK. Tantalum (Ta) has a high density (16 g per cm3) which is 50% higher than lead (Pb) and therefore more radio-opaque. For this reason tantalum markers require a lower x-ray dose for examination. Tantalum metal is further highly biocompatible and has been used for surgery for more than 30 years without any severe events reported. Tantalum x-ray markers are among the safest options currently available .
FibreTuff PAPC can be used for medical tubing to increase radiopacity.