‘Medical advancements through the years have allowed medical practitioners today to increase the level of success in the treatments that they perform. Not just for humans, animals have also benefitted from these innovations. Take the case of Patches.
A nine-year-old dachshund diagnosed with a brain tumor, Patches required immediate surgery to remove the invasive growth inside her head. Cancer has grown to the size of a baby’s fist, and for a small breed dog, this is enough cause a lot of discomforts.
Because of the position and size of the tumor, it was now causing stress towards Patches’ eye socket. They went to the Ontario Veterinary College, where Dr. Michelle Oblak, a veterinary surgical oncologist, took on the difficult challenge.
To gain access to the tumor, a part of Patches’ skull had to be removed. Previously, the piece of the skull taken out would be replaced with a titanium mesh of the same shape and size. With today’s technology using 3D printing, a custom-made titanium cap could easily be made.
Through this method, a more precise measurement can be made at a faster period of time. The cap should have a perfect fit, and any slight difference could spell disaster. To get an accurate measurement, they scanned the dog’s skull and 3D printed a mold as well.
Because they already have a precise mold, doctors were able to practice the procedure. They had the opportunity to see exactly what they were facing and plan what they needed to do. This means that they minimize any mistakes in a treatment that left no room for error.
There was none. The surgery lasted for a few hours, but because everything went smoothly, Patches was showing fast recovery. After coming out of sleep, she was walking around and connecting with her family.
Patches is now cancer-free. Despite a few tell-tale signs, like a permanently crooked ear, no one can tell that she had a fist-size tumor in her head before.
3-D Printing Research Opens New Possibilities for Cancer Surgeries: When the Ontario Veterinary College’s Dr. Michelle Oblak used a 3-D printed custom titanium plate for surgery on a dog’s skull, the procedure not only marked a veterinary first in North America, but it also signalled a potential new breakthrough in cancer research. READ MORE: https://news.uoguelph.ca/2018/09/3d-printing-research-opens-new-possibilities-for-cancer-surgeries/
Posted by Ontario Veterinary College on Monday, September 24, 2018
Source: Ontario Veterinary College via Facebook
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