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The creation and verification of cranial models using three-dimensional rapid prototyping technology in field of transnasal sphenoid endoscopy

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Abstract:

Background:

Surgical navigation systems have been used increasingly in guiding complex ear, nose, and throat surgery. Although these are helpful, they are only beneficial intraoperatively; thus, the novice surgeon will not have the preoperative training or exposure that can be vital in complex procedures. In addition, there is a lack of reliable models to give surgeons hands-on training in performing such procedures.

Methods:

A technique using an industrial rapid prototyping process by three-dimensional (3D) printing was developed, from which accurate spatial models of the nasal cavity, paranasal sinuses (sphenoid sinus in particular), and intrasellar/pituitary pathology were produced, according to the parameters of an individual patient. Image-guided surgical (IGS) techniques on two different platforms were used during endoscopic transsphenoidal surgery to test and validate the anatomical accuracy of the sinus models by comparing the models with radiological images of the patient on IGS.

Results:

It was possible to register, validate, and navigate accurately on these models using commonly available navigation stations, matching accurately the anatomy of the model to the IGS images.

Conclusion:

These 3D models can be reliably used for teaching/training and preoperative planning purposes.

Keywords: 3D printing; Anatomy; endoscopic transsphenoidal surgery; image-guided surgery; pituitary; rapid prototype; sinus model; sphenoid sinus; surgical navigation; training

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.2500/ajra.2012.26.3808

Affiliations: Division of Neurosurgery, University of Malaya, Lembah Pantai, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Publication date: 2012-09-01

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