Structural and congenital heart disease interventions: the role of three-dimensional printing

L. M. Meier, M. Meineri, J. Qua Hiansen, E. M. Horlick
2017 Netherlands Heart Journal  
Advances in catheter-based interventions in structural and congenital heart disease have mandated an increased demand for three-dimensional (3D) visualisation of complex cardiac anatomy. Despite progress in 3D imaging modalities, the pre-and periprocedural visualisation of spatial anatomy is relegated to two-dimensional flat screen representations. 3D printing is an evolving technology based on the concept of additive manufacturing, where computerised digital surface renders are converted into
more » ... hysical models. Printed models replicate complex structures in tangible forms that cardiovascular physicians and surgeons can use for education, preprocedural planning and device testing. In this review we discuss the different steps of the 3D printing process, which include image acquisition, segmentation, printing methods and materials. We also examine the expanded applications of 3D printing in the catheter-based treatment of adult patients with structural and congenital heart disease while highlighting the current limitations of this technology in terms of segmentation, model accuracy and dynamic capabilities. Furthermore, we provide information on the resources needed to establish a hospital-based 3D printing laboratory. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (
doi:10.1007/s12471-016-0942-3 pmid:28083857 pmcid:PMC5260628 fatcat:rr6y63ehhvehpp3pkrayioaa2a