"Additive Manufacturing for Medical Applications"
Additive Manufacturing for Medical Applications
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Additive manufacturing is used for more and more applications besides rapid prototyping. Special advantages lie in the design freedom and toolless production, which can save development time and production costs. The toolless production enables cheaper production of individualized products which is beneficial for personalized medicine. This thesis attempts to give examples for possible applications of additive manufacturing for the development and production of medical products and hereby focuses on a participative and transdisciplinary development method.
Using three case studies, ?RaProErgo - Rapid Prototyping for Ergotherapy?, ?RaProRadio - Rapid Prototyping for Radiotherapy?, and ?RaProNeuro - Rapid Prototyping for Neurosurgery?, participatory design, material selection and assessment of possible manufacturing methods are discussed and evaluated. The case studies include the development of orthotics, therapy aids, and medical simulators. Personalized mouth sticks for people with insufficient hand-/arm-movement ability, patient fixation masks for stereotactic radiotherapy, and hyperelastic material models and phantoms for a hybrid aneurysm clipping simulator were developed.
It could be shown that the development of medical products can be greatly supported by interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary teamwork and a participatory design approach that includes clients/patients and medical personnel in the development process. It can be concluded that additive manufacturing helps in the development phase through rapid prototyping and enables the production of personalized and patient specific medical products.