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Written by Ankur Agarwal
on 18 Feb 2016

The medical technology industry has been a leader in the use of additive manufacturing (AM). Additive manufacturing offers multiple benefits for a wide range of markets. I thought it is about time someone took to the town-hall and declare the obvious. Especially when we are taking about body part replacements – orthopedic or otherwise. 3D Printing is revolutionizing Healthcare systems in a way unimaginable earlier.

Here are those 4 big reasons:

1. Cost of a Surgery Will Go Down. Way Down!!

Traditionally manufactured instruments are mostly standardized and therefore correspond to additional sterilization and repository costs. Despite customization, higher productivity and lower unit expenses can be attained in production with additive manufacturing. In this way the surgeon is supplied with a customized, superior product that meets the stringent standards for medical applications.

2. A Surgeon’s Most Missed Friend, Precision, Will Be Back.

Surgeries performed with customized instruments are simple for the surgeon. The instrument design can be enhanced to suit the particular operating situation, and its functionality can be amplified. Helps in achieving greater precision and therefore, shortens the surgical time considerably. It also decreases the risk of errors, complications or infection during the operation.

3. Patients Will Have A Happier Time

Operating with a customized surgical instrument ensures that the patient spends less time in the operating room and so requires less anesthetic. There is more precision in the placement of the implant, thereby minimizing the probability of a revision surgery and a protracted rehabilitation period as opposed to the standardized instruments.

4. And You Will Save Earth By Saving Energy.

Additive manufacturing method unlike the conventional subtraction method generates lesser waste. The ratio of input to output product material usage ratio is quite low when compared to the conventional methods.

So that was two pennies of my shelf! Would love to hear what you have in mind?

- a comprehensive paper on Additive Manufacturing in Medical Devices Industry.

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