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European collaboration to develop ‘game-changing’ solution for radiation-free pre-operative planning

  • Pre-operative planning
  • Radiology
  • Innovation

A European-wide partnership across academia and industry has received funds to develop an end-to-end radiation-free, solution for 3D printed orthopedic models for pre-operative planning.

University Medical Center Utrecht, MRIguidance and Axial3D have received a European Eurostars grant to develop an end-to-end, radiation-free, 3D printing innovation for pre-operative planning in orthopedics.

A game-changer for 3D printing in pre-operative planning

The collaboration will create an end-to-end solution for radiation-free pre-operative planning, reducing surgery time and improving clinical outcomes. The solution will be created through a combination of MRIguidance’ imaging software and 3D printing expertise of Axial3D and the clinical validation in UMC Utrecht.

Pre-operative planning using 3D anatomical models improves surgical outcomes and reduces time in theater, blood loss, infection risk and associated complications. However, 3D printing of bony pathologies currently requires imaging with harmful radiation and a laborious and time-consuming workflow. This partnership aims to overcome these limitations, paving the way for the widespread adoption of 3D-printed models for patient-specific orthopedic treatment.

In an ideal world, a single medical imaging exam would generate 3D images of both bone and the soft tissue without the use of harmful radiation. However, in orthopedics and neurology, radiologists and the treating physicians now have to choose between an MRI scan for soft tissue and an X-ray based CT scan for bone information. This results in suboptimal information for diagnosis and treatment planning, complex workflows and high healthcare costs.

MRIguidance now brings this ideal world to reality with BoneMRI. BoneMRI generates a CT-like image to complement the soft tissue images derived from an MRI scan. For the clinicians BoneMRI works in the background in a seamless workflow without the need for new desktop applications.

Roel Raatgever, CEO of MRIguidance, said “Our BoneMRI imaging technology visualizes bone with an MRI scan. These images can serve as source images to develop the 3D printed models. I am very happy with our collaboration with Axial3D and UMC Utrecht. We form a strong and complementary team that can bring this project to a success.”

Niall Haslam, CTO of Axial3D at the time, said “It’s with great pleasure that we announce our partnership with UMC Utrecht and MRIguidance. The collaboration between our organizations aims to deliver an improved patient experience while giving surgeons access to game-changing medical imaging for extremely complex orthopedic cases.”

The partnership shows the power of collaboration and how it can improve patient experience and care.

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