The rapid prototyping of anatomic models in pulmonary atresia

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Abstract

Objective

The goal of this study was to assess the utility and accuracy of solid anatomic models constructed with rapid prototyping technology for surgical planning in patients with pulmonary atresia with ventricular septal defect and major aortopulmonary collateral arteries.

Methods

In 6 patients with pulmonary atresia with ventricular septal defect and major aortopulmonary collateral arteries, anatomic models of the pulmonary vasculature were rapid prototyped from computed tomographic angiographic data. The surgeons used the models for preoperative and intraoperative planning. The models' accuracy and utility were assessed with a postoperative questionnaire completed by the surgeons. An independent cardiac radiologist also assessed each model for accuracy of major aortopulmonary collateral artery origin, course, and caliber relative to conventional angiography.

Results

Of the major aortopulmonary collateral arteries identified during surgery and conventional angiography, 96% and 93%, respectively, were accurately represented by the models. The surgeons found the models to be very useful in visualizing the vascular anatomy.

Conclusion

This study presents the novel vascular application of rapid prototyping to pediatric congenital heart disease. Anatomic models are an intuitive means of communicating complex imaging data, such as the pulmonary vascular tree, which can be referenced intraoperatively.

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