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3D Printer helps doctor plan for complicated heart surgery

July 20, 2016 Customers in the News

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) — On Wednesday a baby boy, not even two weeks old, will undergo heart surgery necessary to save his life.

Inside Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Doctor Jim Hamel explains to Megan and Aaron Rastovski what the rubber-like model is in their hands. It’s an exact replica of their 13 day-old son Trajan’s heart.

“We did that with his heart because of the complexity of it,” said Dr. Hammel.

It’s new technology that helps surgeons better prepare for unique, complicated operations.

“Just knowing that this is the only thing that is keeping him from being a normal little baby is right in the palm of your hand,” said Aaron.

Before birth, Trajan was diagnosed with a very complicated heart defect.

“The chambers are twisted relative to each other, and there is a hole between the two pumping chambers, and the arteries that come out of the heart are crossed so that they come out of the wrong chambers,” said Hammel.

Surgery is Trajan’s only chance for survival. Since it’s such a unique surgery, Trajan’s doctors are using a new technology to help them plan. They’ve already practiced on an exact replica of Trajan’s heart made with a 3-D printer.

Posted by Heather Adams