from http://www.3ders.org/articles/20170704-georgia-techs-3d-printed-heart-valve-models-could-help-cardiologists-perform-valve-replacements.html
Researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology and the Piedmont Heart Institute are using patient-specific 3D printed heart valve models to improve the success rate of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedures. Their aim is to avoid the problem of paravalvular leakage.

In a study published in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging, researchers from the two institutes have shown that 3D printed models based on CT scans of a patient’s heart behave similarly to real valves.


This is big news with regard to the researchers’ efforts to combat paravalvular leakage, a relatively rare TAVR complication that involves blood leaking between cardiac tissue and the implanted valve due to insufficient sealing.

“Paravalvular leakage is an extremely important indicator in how well the patient will do long term with their new valve,” said Zhen Qian, chief of Cardiovascular Imaging Research at Piedmont Heart Institute, part of Piedmont Healthcare.

“The idea was, now that we can make a patient-specific model with this tissue-mimicking 3D printing technology, we can test how the prosthetic valves interact with the 3D printed models to learn whether we can predict leakage.”

TAVR, a minimally invasive procedure that involves wedging a replacement valve into the aortic valve’s place, is generally identified as an appropriate procedure for patients who might suffer serious complications from open-heart surgery.

Leakage can occur when the replacement valve doesn’t fit perfectly, and this unwanted complication can ultimately lead to an earlier death for the patient.

3ders.org – Georgia Tech’s 3D printed heart valve models could help cardiologists perform valve replacements | 3D Printer News & 3D Printing News

Researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology and the Piedmont Heart Institute are using patient-specific 3D printed heart valve models to improve the success rate of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedures. Their aim is to avoid the problem of paravalvular leakage.

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