This quote from GigaOm got my attention this morning
A two-year-old girl born with a hole in her heart had a life-saving operation in London last month thanks to a 3D printer. Perhaps equally astounding is that she’s not the first.
This is the story
Mina Khan was born with a hole in the wall between two chambers of her heart, a condition that left her exhausted and unable to gain weight or even grow hair. The deformity was so severe doctors said it likely couldn’t be repaired – but by creating an exact 3D replica of her heart using MRI and computerized tomography scans, surgeons at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London were able to design a bespoke patch, practice and perfect how to stitch it into place, and ultimately perform the surgery successfully on the girl’s actual heart.
I will not get into the technical aspects of developing these new surgical procedures. But you should. It gives you an idea of the speed at which we are developing new tools that just a few years ago would have seemed miraculous.