3d-skull

A recent video explored how 3D printing might change the world as we know it, but never did I imagine this was possible. According to a new report, 75 percent of a man’s skull—it’s unclear if the report means surface area or mass—was successfully replaced with a 3D-printed implant. How incredible.

The Oxford Performance Material in Connecticut allegedly received FDA approval and then constructed the prosthetic using an additive printing process. Made of polyetherketoneketone, researchers were even able to etch small details into the polymer’s surface to promote the growth of bone and cells down the road. The groundbreaking procedure could become an invaluable stepping stone for bone replacements elsewhere in the body, Oxford said.

Of course, questions arise regarding just how strong 3D printed bone would be, and how it’ll hold up over the course of several years. Either way, researchers scanned the man’s skull, 3D printed the scan and then replaced the damaged portion. That right there is amazing enough for us to awe over, but it’ll be interesting to see how this evolves.

3D replacement fingers and arms definitely sounds strange. But it could become something we see more of in the future.