The experimental operation helped the 27-year-old Australian save his leg. Roiben Lichter suffered a serious form of osteomyelitis and was threatened with an amputation of his leg, but the doctors suggested that he try a new method, previously tested only on animals. As a result, surgeons implanted in his leg frame tibia, printed on a 3D printer.
First, a three-dimensional model of the patient's tibia was created, then it was sent to Singapore, where the prosthesis was made from a biocompatible polymer. To successfully complete the implantation, doctors had to perform five operations. During the first of these, pus was drained from the tissues, and the next four were needed for the successful completion of the operation, because it is not easy to install a 3D prosthesis into the bone.
A new bone was covered with blood vessels and tissues taken from the tibia of the patient and the left knee – they are now beginning to form around the new bone. Doctors are confident that over time the tissues will be able to recreate a new bone, but this will take quite a long time – a year and a half. While Roiben can not walk and disturb his leg.
This is not the first case of replacing the patient's bones with a 3D prosthesis. Earlier in China, a surgery was carried out during which the patient was replaced by several cervical vertebrae on prostheses created with a 3D printer.
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