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The reconstructed ear to a baby thanks to 3D printing
3D printing has allowed the surgeons of the Meyer to Florence to rebuild the ear of a child, taking as a 'fashioned it into that of his mother. It is the story of Lapo (fictitious name) a patient of 13 years of the hospital, tuscan, suffering from microtia, a congenital malformation rare (affects 5 children per 10,000 births), in his case bilateral, which leads to an absence of the development of the outer ear. The plastic surgeon of Meyer, who has operated has been able to reconstruct the ear from a small portion of the rib cartilages taken from the child, giving them the shape of the ear thanks to 3D printed models. The intervention has seen surgeons and engineers in the operating room and is the first in Italy to use this technology.

It required a long preparation before arriving in the operating room: the exact shape of the cartilages of the child with which to reconstruct the ear was first acquired by Tac. At that point, thanks to a latest-generation software, was 3D printed in a copy of the cartilages: in this three-dimensional model, we could see down to the millimeter portion of the cartilage to be taken. To define then, with the highest possible precision that the form would have had the ear of a "natural" child, it was taken as a model the ear of the mother of baby: thanks to 3D scans, the team has reproduced the three-dimensional model.

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