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3D Printing for Surgical Planning of Canine Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeries

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Advanced diagnostic imaging is an essential part of preoperative planning in veterinary oral and maxillofacial surgery. 3D-printed models and surgical guides generated from diagnostic imaging can provide a deeper understanding of the complex maxillofacial anatomy and relevant spatial relationships. Our case series consists of three 3D-printed models segmented from computed tomography (CT) and cone beam CT and fabricated via desktop vat polymerization for preoperative planning and intraoperative guidance for resection of maxillary osteosarcoma, mandibular reconstruction after mandibulectomy, and gap arthroplasty for temporomandibular joint ankylosis in dogs. 

We illustrate potential benefits and indications for 3D printing in veterinary oral and maxillofacial surgery. The patient-specific 3D model facilitates individualized surgical planning, allowing surgeons to tailor and augment the surgical plan by identifying challenging anatomy and simulating surgical steps in advance. This includes the planning of osteotomy lines and pre-contouring of titanium plates for reconstruction. The 3D printed model and surgical guide also serve as intraoperative reference and guidance. In addition to preoperative planning and intraoperative guidance, 3D printed models can improve veterinary resident and student training as well as pet owners’ understanding and communication regarding the condition of their pets, treatment plan and intended outcomes. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand how 3D printed model improves understanding of complex anatomy in cases of neoplasia located in challenging location.
  • Learn how to 3D print model for preoperative planning of osteotomy line and precontouring titanium plates for mandibular reconstruction after mandibulectomy.
  • Learn how to 3D print model and surgical cutting guide for preoperative planning of osteotomy line for surgical treatment of temporomandibular joint ankylosis.