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3D Printed Models To Help Repair Orbital Rim Fractures


Paige Anne Carter

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Orbital rim fractures refer to the injury around the outer edges of the eye socket. Such injuries are obtained by extreme force like in car accidents. This injury can lead to serious repercussions to the vision, blurry and double vision among many others is examples of which.

Small orbital rim fractures are treated with ice packs and antibiotics but these treatments no longer work for larger and more complicated fractures. Ophthalmologists need to resort to surgical procedures to treat patients suffering from this condition. However, the problem is that the eye socket of each patient is unique and finding the right implant for each patient presents a challenge to doctors–until today.

Doctors from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University are now using 3D printers to create models to improve the orbital implant surgery in order to reduce the risk of patients undergoing said surgery to treat orbital rim fracture. Dr. Louis Sze, one of the lead researchers in this study, noted that in order to create the 3D models, they need to get the patient’s X-ray and CT scan data to construct the orbital floor of the patient’s socket.

Using a biocompatible thermoplastic ejected by the Fortus 3D Production System, the researchers were able to print heat-resistant as well as biocompatible surgical parts that can be used as implants to fix the necessary structures of the orbital socket.

With this technology, it is now possible for people who suffer from orbital rim fracture to be able to get their sight back after their injuries.

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