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Using Three Dimensional Printing to Manufacture Low-Cost Task Trainers to Simulate Dental and Oral Surgery Applications

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Simulation models are used in every major hospital, are expensive, and are limited to market availability.  Inter-professional collaboration between the 3D Medical Applications Center, and other hospital departments has led to the development of several new low-cost, realistic models.  Methods: Each simulation model has a unique digital origin.  Once there the digital starting point and purpose of the simulation model is defined, additional modeling is necessary to incorporate all aspects of the simulation.  3D printing is used to create parts of the models directly and/or tools for silicone molding.  In many cases 3D-printed parts, silicone rubber, and commonly available supplies are combined to create the final realistic model.  Results: Over 10 unique custom simulation models have been successfully completed for dental and oral surgery procedures including: root canals, gum grafts for recession, 3rd molar removal and custom guide fabrication trials.  Conclusion 3D printing is extremely flexible and an applicable solution to aid in these limited-quantity, low-cost, simulation model production needs.  In general production cost range in the hundreds of dollars, far less than an average price of a comparable simulation model, if available.  Digital files allow the facility to adapt a particular model and simulate another procedure.

Learning Objectives:

  • Be familiar with current dental and oral surgery simulation models
  • Participants will be shown methods used to create these training models
  • Peter Liacouras
    Director of Services, 3D Medical Applications Center
    Walter Reed National Military Medical Center