One fateful night in 2001, Patrick Hardison, a former volunteer firefighter from Mississippi, bravely entered a burning house, trying to rescue anyone who might be trapped inside.
When the burning house on Hardison collapsed, he was seriously injured, which completely distorted his facial features, making him completely unrecognizable even to his wife and children.
This horrific accident forced Hardison to the operating table more than 70 times, where traditional surgical operations were only adding to the mental and physical stress as the fire disfigured him.
It wasn’t until Dr. Eduardo de Rodriguez, a plastic surgeon at NYU’s Langone Medical Center, planned to give Hardison a full face transplant. The plan involved finding a ‘donor’ who matched hair colour, skin colour, blood type, and also had a skeletal structure similar to Hardinson’s.
Once a selected donor was found, Rodriguez and his staff used 3D Systems’ Virtual Surgical Planning (VSP) technology to provide cutting guides on actual 3D scans of the bone structure of both patient and donor bone structure by offering adequate surgical preparation. allows for.
VSP technology is able to create these surgical templates using medical scan data, which are transformed into 3D models and, in some cases, even 3D printed for visual aid. The medical modeling team at 3D Systems actually assisted in the printing of these templates, using a biocompatible 3D printing material that is easily sterilized, and therefore, can be used safely within the confines of an operating room. is.
Using the careful surgical planning of Rodriguez and his team, modeled on 3D Systems’ VSP technology, Hardinson achieved a highly successful surgery and suddenly regained all the features of a human face for the first time in years.
Although intensive surgery was assisted by Rodriguez and more than 100 other individuals who took 26 hours to complete the operation, planning the surgery would have been impossible without the preparatory support provided by 3D Systems and their virtual surgical planning technology.
Would. Now, thanks to Dr. Rodriguez, 3D Systems’ medical modeling team, and the rest of the staff at NYU’s Langone Medical Center, Patrick Hardison can finally put a smile on the world once again.