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Posts Tagged ‘brain surgery’


First-ever living 3D printed aneurysm

 

Reporter : Irina Robu, PhD

A brain aneurysm is a bulge that forms in the blood vessel of your brain that could lead to severe health issues and possibly death. Brain aneurysm affect about one in 50 Americans and can lead to serious medical emergencies including stroke and brain damage.  Current treatments for brain aneurysm are limited and very invasive and can vary from person to person.

Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and their collaborators were able to replicate an aneurysm in vitro by 3D printing blood vessels with human cerebral cells. One of the leading engineers, William Hynes  performed an endovascular repair procedure on the printed aneurysm by inserting a catheter into blood vessel and tightly packed platinum coils inside the aneurysm sac. Afterward, the scientists introduced blood plasma into the aneurysm and identified the formation of blood clot where the coils were located and they were able to observe the post-op healing process of the endothelial cells within the vessels.

One thing that was obvious to the LLNL scientists is that computer modeling is an important step to developing patient-specific care for aneurysms based on patient’s blood vessel geometry, blood pressure and other factors. They also determined that it takes time for the new surgical technology to move from laboratory to the clinic.

The idea is if they can replicate the aneurysms as much as needed using  animal models or 3D printing, they can help find better options for aneurysms with uncontrollable geometries.  Since, the most common treatment for aneurysms is  the endovascular metal coiling approach, researchers believe  that by taking out the guesswork out of aneurysms treatment researchers can design more predictive 3D models that takes patient geometry into account.

Hynes teamed with former LLNL scientist Duncan Maitland and Amanda Randles, a former Lab computational scientist  to verify if Randles’s flow dynamic model compares with the real world. At low flow rates, scientist saw little movement of blood into the aneurysm, while an increased flow rate, resulted in a circular flow of blood throughout the aneurysm, as would be predictable in a true brain aneurysm.  

Using the data obtained from the flow dynamic model in combination with the 3D printing platform, researchers developed a potential tool for surgeons to pre-select the best coil types desirable to fully pack an aneurysm to obtain the best treatment outcome, and perform “test runs” of procedures before attempting them on the human patient.

Unlike animal models, LLNL’s platform allows scientists to directly measure the fluid dynamics inside the vessels and aneurysm while maintaining biological relevance.

In addition to patient-specific care and serving as a testbed for surgical training, researchers mentioned that the platform can improve the understanding of basic biology and the post-surgery healing response. Even though the results are promising, researchers mentioned that there is long way before their platform is applicable in a clinical environment setting.

SOURCE :

https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/lab-team-develops-first-ever-living-3d-printed-aneurysm-improve-surgical-procedures-personalize?utm_source=fiat-lux

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