The Sidra Medical and Research Center (Sidra) will very soon provide the 3D image of a foetus upon request from parents, an official of the hospital has revealed . Once started, Sidra will be one of the very few hospitals in the world to provide such a service.
“Sidra will soon be able to offer 3D models of faces or hands of the baby by using foetal ultrasound scans. Most probably we will start providing the services any time from now,” Dr. Deepak Kaura, chair of Radiology at Sidra told Gulf Times recently.
“Right now we are in the pilot phase and have already made a few trials for some of our patients. The feedback has been very positive and we expect to roll it out very soon. We will probably be one of the few hospitals in the world that offers this service,” Dr. Kaura continued.
According to Dr Kaura, one area where 3D printing may play an active role with regard to expectant mothers, is in helping them bond with their children even before birth. “When a pregnant woman undergoes an ultrasound, we can take a 3D picture of the baby’s face and print it into a model. Many expecting parents love the idea of having an actual 3D model of their baby’s face as a keepsake,” explained Dr. Kaura.
The official said that Sidra plans to make it a full service for the expectant mothers. He noted, “Through a strong partnership between the Department of Radiology and the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Sidra aims to provide it as one of the services for parents.”
Sidra, the high tech hospital for women and children, has been making use of 3D printed models for various medical practices since its Outpatient Clinic started operations in May this year. The radiology team has been preparing 3D models of the body parts of the patients from CT scan as well as MRI scan.
Sidra presently is using the 3D printed models from CT and MRI scans for pre-surgical planning.The official said that 3D models can help the surgeons assess the complications within the patient’s anatomy prior to surgery.
The hospital currently uses nylon for making the 3D models, but is preparing to put in place a state-of-the-art carbon 3D printer. A 3D model made with carbon fibre can make stronger 3D models. Once installed, Sidra, most probably will be the only organisation in the healthcare industry with a carbon fibre printer.
Dr. Kaura maintained that the output of 3D model printing at Sidra will go up considerably in the coming months. “At present we print three to four models a week. However, as we launch new clinics, we expect the numbers will increase considerably,” he added.