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Medicine Printer United Kingdom

3D Printed Bone Models Cut Cost of Surgery Operations 88

Tasha26 writes "A trainee surgeon, Mark Frame, has figured out how to save U.K.'s NHS thousands of pounds by taking advantage of 3D-printer technology. Success in orthopedic operations relies on surgeons having an accurate 3D model of the area where the operation will take place. Such models take time to produce and cost up to £1200 ($1915). Mark, a self-confessed 'technology geek,' used open source OsiriX software to convert CT scans into files which are readable by the 3D printers at Shapeways, a company in the Netherlands. Within a week they produced and delivered the first plastic 3D model of a child's forearm at a cost of £77 ($123). Mark has written a free guide so that other surgeons can make their own bones, which is being considered for publication by the World Journal of Science and Technology."
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3D Printed Bone Models Cut Cost of Surgery Operations

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  • Nice! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spiffmastercow ( 1001386 ) on Thursday November 03, 2011 @11:20AM (#37935154)
    Side note -- if this happened in the US, he would have kept the source closed, founded a company, charged extortionary prices, and the entire medical profession would be worse off at his expense.
  • Re:Nice! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 03, 2011 @11:24AM (#37935246)

    So what if it were kept closed source? I would have still undoubtedly been cheaper than what they were using, saving money, however much.

    People do have the right to make money, based on a new creative idea - its called innovation. If we don't have any incentive to innovate (read money), it's likely that much innovation would stagnate. If I were this guy, I'd be marketing my own kit to hospitals everywhere, at say 50% of the going rate - enough to make them buy it, while making money for myself at the same time.

    I like the idea of open source, but it's naive to think that EVERYTHING should be open source, else it's evil.

  • Re:Nice! (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 03, 2011 @11:30AM (#37935354)

    You're a sad little person, aren't you, to equate incentive with money.

  • by ciderbrew ( 1860166 ) on Thursday November 03, 2011 @12:08PM (#37935946)

    That's just not going to happen.

    People want to be able to print objects. There is a want and a need. To say it isn't going to happen in the next X years is daft.
    They just need to change the ink. I'm looking forward to have a Graphene printer on my desk in the next 20years.

  • Re:Nice! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by morgauxo ( 974071 ) on Thursday November 03, 2011 @01:30PM (#37937404)
    He took CT scans (already existed)
    Fed them through an open source program (already existed)
    And sent them to a 3D printer (already existed)

    If I understand the paytard philosophy, this is innovative enough that he should get a government supported monopoly?
    And rather than limiting the benefit patients can receive from this technology to only as many patients as his new startup can handle and driving up the price because supply would be way less than demand and competition nil this is supposed to somehow foster continued innovation?

    F'ng PayTards, I hope one day they see the medicines and treatments they need single sourced and priced out of reach.

The rich get rich, and the poor get poorer. The haves get more, the have-nots die.