3D printing technology is acting as a catalyst to boost several industries with its robust applications and innovations.
The medical domain is the biggest beneficiary of this advancement as additive manufacturing helps transform multiple touchpoints.
Be it faster patient diagnosis, manufacturing affordable prosthetics, or mitigating the complexity — 3d printing is the key.
Additive manufacturing is gradually changing the entire ‘game’ in the medical domain, and the transformation is evident and life-changing.
Now, doctors and surgeons can speed up the treatment procedure with 3d printing’s on-demand capability. On the contrary, traditional processes have a minimal scope of scalability and improving efficiency.
By 2022, the market of 3d-printed medical devices will touch the mark of 1,883 million dollars, and it’s only one part of the medical domain. With overgrowing availability and surged demand, we are about to see more bespoke applications of this technology.
The most significant game-changing factor of 3D printing for healthcare is cost optimization in multiple medical processes.
Additive manufacturing technology comes with various materials and printing technology, making production highly cost-effective. In the future, this advancement will help create cost-effective organs and provide doctors with new ways to test and diagnose.
Since 2014, the market of 3d printing in the medical domain has grown by more than 35%, and it will continue to surge.
From artificial organ development, prosthetic & medical device manufacturing, it becomes easier with 3d printing to optimize the cost without compromising with quality.
3d printing is playing a critical role in reducing the overall organ transplants cost so that more people can afford it. It is possible to slash the transplant cost by one-third using additive manufacturing.
Medical devices & prosthetics
3d printing brings higher flexibility in manufacturing individualized prosthetics and custom medical devices to improve the overall treatment. As compared to traditional prosthetics, these bespoke-made supports offer more ease to patients in their daily usage.
With 3d printing, manufacturers can produce specific-fit prosthetics in only a couple of hours. This advantage is not available while working with traditional methods.
On the other side, 3d printing is instrumental in producing medical devices and drugs containers in bulk, even in emergencies.
Several companies worldwide contributed to tackling the shortage of PPE kits and other vital medical accessories during the COVID-19 peak.
From ventilator valves to masks, PPE kit, and other safety equipment — 3d printing neutralized the surged demands. In future, we will experience even more advanced applications in the medical device department as the availability improves.
Serializable surgical instruments
3d printing services are a boon to produce high-grade serializable surgical instruments at lower costs. Using 3d printing technologies like FDM (fused deposition modelling), it becomes more accessible to manufacturing custom surgical instruments with serializable 3d printing materials.
Several medical devices and surgical instruments come in contact with the patient’s body, and hence it becomes critical to take care of sterilization. Unlike traditional manufacturing, companies have a wide choice of human-safe materials.
3d printing can reduce the surgical instrument manufacturing cost and allow more hospitals and treatment centers to adopt high-quality surgical sets.
An average hospital chain uses thousands of surgical instruments which need frequent replacement after their usage.
For cost optimization, 3d printing companies are closely doing R&D to come up with more high-quality products at a lower cost.
Bio printing is the future
The most extensive game-changer application of this technology is bioprinting and organ printing.
As of now, manufacturers are successfully printing medical devices and instruments. In future, the trend of printing live tissues and working organs will go mainstream.
These kinds of bioprinting are mostly limited to laboratories, but we will see more implementations.
Scientists have successfully printed a working heart, eye, and live tissues to heal a human body. However, it will take more R&D work to commercialize it.
Once gone mainstream, there will be no availability challenges as manufacturers can produce and supply the parts on demand.
3D printing for a speedy recovery
3d print prosthetics and medical devices will aid patients with faster recovery than the traditional approach. As this technology comes with a higher degree of personalization, the recovery process is easier to pace.
Doctors can prepare 3d models to understand severe complications and provide better treatment to patients quickly. The 3d models can convey more information than traditional reports, with little scope for human error.
Future of 3D printing in the medical field
All the above advancements are only the beginning of highly productive innovations that we will witness in the future.
As the availability of 3d printers will increase, more health institutes will adopt this technology. It will help both doctors and patients experience a better treatment flow than the conventional methods.
In 2021 and beyond, we will see more transforming disruptions in the medical field. 3D Spectra Tech is a leading 3d printing company in India that offers a complete range of custom additive manufacturing services to accelerate innovations in the medical domain.