Developed from real patient case study specimens, the 3D printed anatomy model pathology series introduces an unmatched level of realism in human anatomy models. Each 3D printed anatomy model is a high-fidelity replica of a human cadaveric specimen, focusing on the key morbidity presentations that led to the deceasement of the patient. With advances in 3D printing materials and techniques, these stories can come to life in an ethical, consistently reproduceable, and easy to handle format. Ideal for the most advanced anatomical and pathological study, and backed by authentic case study details, students, instructors, and experts alike will discover a new level of anatomical study with the 3D printed anatomy model pathology series.
A 66-year-old woman suffered sudden onset of severe colicky central abdominal pain, somewhat relieved by drawing up her knees. She passed a stool containing mucus and blood ("like redcurrant jelly"). On examination, there was a mass in the left hypochondrium, which hardened with each spasm of pain. The specimen was resected at laparotomy.
The specimen is a segment of small bowel, approximately 20 cm in length, with attached mesentery up to 2 cm in width (more evident on the uncut aspect of the specimen). About 5 cm from the proximal surgical resection margin (which is at the left hand of the specimen), a polypoid tumor 3 cm in diameter has become invaginated into the lumen of the bowel, and has been propelled distally, forming an intussusception 13 cm in length. The tumor is seen at the apex of the intussusception (near the right hand side of the specimen). The congestion and exudate seen on the mucosal surface of the intussusception (invaginated portion) are features considered with early ischemic necrosis. The histological diagnosis is not recorded in this case; however, the macroscopic appearance is consistent with a metastatic malignant tumor, although the possibility of a primary tumor cannot definitely be excluded.
Intussusception of the small bowel is most common in children, in whom it is usually due to invagination of swollen lymphoid tissue (Peyer's patches) in the wall of the distal ileum. In adults, it is rare, causing only between 1 - 5 percent of cases of bowel obstruction. The usual cause a polypoid tumor, as seen in this specimen, acting as a pathological lead point being pulled forward by peristalsis, and thereby causing telescoping of the affected portion of bowel distally. Presentation may be of intermittent symptoms of bowel obstruction and in some cases excruciating pain. Classification of intussusception can be by causal pathology or by location. Abdominal CT scan will typically demonstrate a typical target sign with alternating hyper/hypodense layers.
Advantages of 3D Printed Anatomical Models
- 3D printed anatomical models are the most anatomically accurate examples of human anatomy because they are based on real human specimens.
- Avoid the ethical complications and complex handling, storage, and documentation requirements with 3D printed models when compared to human cadaveric specimens.
- 3D printed anatomy models are far less expensive than real human cadaveric specimens.
- Reproducibility and consistency allow for standardization of education and faster availability of models when you need them.
- Customization options are available for specific applications or educational needs. Enlargement, highlighting of specific anatomical structures, cutaway views, and more are just some of the customizations available.
Disadvantages of Human Cadavers
- Access to cadavers can be problematic and ethical complications are hard to avoid. Many countries cannot access cadavers for cultural and religious reasons.
- Human cadavers are costly to procure and require expensive storage facilities and dedicated staff to maintain them. Maintenance of the facility alone is costly.
- The cost to develop a cadaver lab or plastination technique is extremely high. Those funds could purchase hundreds of easy to handle, realistic 3D printed anatomical replicas.
- Wet specimens cannot be used in uncertified labs. Certification is expensive and time-consuming.
- Exposure to preservation fluids and chemicals is known to cause long-term health problems for lab workers and students. 3D printed anatomical replicas are safe to handle without any special equipment.
- Lack of reuse and reproducibility. If a dissection mistake is made, a new specimen has to be used and students have to start all over again.
Disadvantages of Plastinated Specimens
- Like real human cadaveric specimens, plastinated models are extremely expensive.
- Plastinated specimens still require real human samples and pose the same ethical issues as real human cadavers.
- The plastination process is extensive and takes months or longer to complete. 3D printed human anatomical models are available in a fraction of the time.
- Plastinated models, like human cadavers, are one of a kind and can only showcase one presentation of human anatomy.
Advanced 3D Printing Techniques for Superior Results
- Vibrant color offering with 10 million colors
- UV-curable inkjet printing
- High quality 3D printing that can create products that are delicate, extremely precise, and incredibly realistic
- To improve durability of fragile, thin, and delicate arteries, veins or vessels, a clear support material is printed in key areas. This makes the models robust so they can be handled by students easily.