As the years go on we see more and more Rapid Prototyped Cranial Implants being used. Now that knee and hip replacements have become increasingly routine surgeries, the next challenge in artificial human bone is the skull. Titanium has been widely used in all sorts of implants including Cranial. Its downside is that it can be temperature conductive after implantation which can lead to problems with long term fit and comfort.
There has been a focus on a new material made from PEEK (polyrtheretherketone) plastic. PEEK’s lighter weight, strength, biocompatibility and other positive characteristics make it a desirable alternative to titanium. The laser-sintered implant geometry has a unique, bone-growth-promoting lattice structure that can only be created with additive manufacturing.
Current design applications are now giving us the capability to replicate nature as best as we can. The Sensable Haptic device is widely used in this process to create 3D sculpted data. This allows us to create a more realistic and accurate implants for the skull. With precise customization and better fit, such implant would require less time in surgery, faster recovery times and provide greater comfort to the patient.