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Due to disrupted global supply chains and hospitals suffer an acute need for personal protective equipment (PPE) including face shields.
As an added layer of protection to dwindling PPE supplies, 3D printed face shields have provided a solution. The shields help to reduce aerosol and splatter exposure on N95 and other face masks, helping to mitigate some of the risk involved with extended use of PPEs.
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There is a nationwide shortage of the nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs needed to collect samples for COVID-19 testing. These swabs are typically used for testing for influenza and other respiratory infections. The supply chain shortages are serious enough that clinicians are beginning to design and test their own swabs as quickly and safely as possible.
Formlabs and Envisiontec are two of several 3D printing companies to address this issue, designing, printing, and testing 3D printed nasal swabs. Clinical validation has been completed for the Formlabs design, made of Surgical Guide Resin, and has received an Emergency IRB approval. Envisiontec was able to print 400 of their swabs in Class 1 approved E-Guide resin on their Envision One cDLM in two hours. The Envisiontec design is currently awaiting final IRB testing and approval.
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As COVID-19 cases continue to skyrocket so does the population of patients in critical condition in need of a ventilator. With the number of ventilators in the US projected to fall short of those who will need them, the nation is scrambling to source these much-needed devices.
Using 3D printing, a ventilator splitter was designed, approved by the FDA for emergency use, and made available free via source code. The FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) approval means that the splitter, the Prisma Health VESper, is only intended effectively as a last-resort measure.
Outside of prototyping, high-strength, and flexible material options, stereolithography has a large selection of bio-compatible and ISO certified materials.
1Compliant with ISO 13485:2016, ISO 10993-1, ISO 7405, ISO 14971, ISO 13485
Extrusion printers are known for having an expansive range of materials. Below are just a few materials used in the healthcare and medical industry.
The following common 3D printing materials are said to have good compatibility with the following sterilization methods.
Autoclave - PEEK, Grey v4 Resin, Surgical Guide Resin
Ethylene Oxide (EtO) - PETg, PP, PC, PLA, TPU, ABS, PA6/12, PEEK, ULTEM
Gamma Irradiation - PETg, PLA, PC, TPU, ABS, PEEK, ULTEM