Prototyping for Surgical and Prosthetic Treatment
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Techniques of rapid prototyping were introduced in the 1980s in the field of engineering for the fabrication of a solid model based on a computed file. After its introduction in the biomedical field, several applications were raised for the fabrication of models to ease surgical planning and simulation in implantology, neurosurgery, and orthopedics, as well as for the fabrication of maxillofacial prostheses. Hence, the literature has described the evolution of rapid prototyping technique in health care, which allowed easier technique, improved surgical results, and fabrication of maxillofacial prostheses. Accordingly, a literature review on MEDLINE ( PubMed) database was conducted using the keywords rapid prototyping, surgical planning, and maxillofacial prostheses and based on articles published from 1981 to 2010. After reading the titles and abstracts of the articles, 50 studies were selected owing to their correlations with the aim of the current study. Several studies show that the prototypes have been used in different dental-medical areas such as maxillofacial and craniofacial surgery; implantology; neurosurgery; orthopedics; scaffolds of ceramic, polymeric, and metallic materials; and fabrication of personalized maxillofacial prostheses. Therefore, prototyping has been an indispensable tool in several studies and helpful for surgical planning and fabrication of prostheses and implants.
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