Laser scanning could advance breast reconstruction

Researchers from Queensland University of Technology have used laser scanning and computer-aided modeling to create an extremely accurate mold of a breast that has been used as a visual aid to surgeons in tissue reconstruction operations.

Sep 12th, 2011

Researchers from Queensland University of Technology (QUT; Brisbane, Australia) have used laser scanning and computer-aided modeling to create an extremely accurate mold of a breast that has been used as a visual aid to surgeons in tissue reconstruction operations.

To date,3-D laser scanning has been performed on three female patients who suffered from breast cancer. The images of their breasts were then fed into the CAD system which produced a single image representing the patient’s breast and surrounding thorax region.

This image was then printed to form a 3-D mold, which was used as an operative aid for surgeons who performed autologous tissue reconstructions -- the transferring of tissue from another part of the patient’s body -- on each of the patients.

Professor Dietmar Hutmacher from QUT said that long-term aim of the research, however, would involve taking a laser scan of the healthy breast and using theCAD modeling process to design a patient-specific scaffold.

The high-porosity scaffold would then be used as a means to harness and grow the patients' own cells before being transferred into the body.

A paper outlining the research can be found on theInstitute of Physics web site.

-- Posted byVision Systems Design

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