In this issue, we picked three recent publications around 3D printed medical devices against COVID-19 pandemic. The first article describes a “home-made” wifi-connected pulse oximeter that transmits live data to a patient’s family doctors. 3D printing was used for parts of this device. The second article highlighted some of the safety concerns, design considerations, waste generation and disposal, intellectual property and manufacturing regulations, and the sanitization of 3D-printed personal protective equipment. The final article described a 3D-printed nasopharyngeal swab collection simulator for COVID-19 testing. Comprehensive 3D files for printing and full instructions for manufacturing this simulator is freely available online via an open-access link in the article link.
“From Academia” features recent, relevant, close to commercialization academic publications in the space of healthcare 3D printing, 3D bioprinting, and related emerging technologies.
3D printing technology and internet of things prototyping in family practice: building pulse oximeters during COVID-19 pandemic
– Authored by Matteo Capobussi & Lorenzo Moja. 3D Printing in Medicine. 2 November 2020
Family doctors can have an active role in identifying significant population needs and solutions. During the COVID-19 epidemic, patient home monitoring with pulse oximetry has been a key aspect of the care of patients. However, pandemics bring a shortage of medical equipment such as pulse oximeters. Through the local maker community, in a matter of days, four “smart” pulse oximeters were built. Following the Internet of Things principles, the prototypes were programmed to transmit real-time data through Wi-Fi directly to the doctors. Each pulse oximeter served a family doctor during the pandemic.
In this article, we describe the process that led to the production of the technology and provides detailed instructions, which have also been shared in maker-oriented websites. Dissemination can potentially lead to additional small-scale productions, limiting future shortages.
– Authored by Neelam Bharti and Shailendra Singh, ACS Chemical Health & Safety. 3 November 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic created a global health crisis that impacted the supply of personal protective equipment and created a shortage of much-needed face shields and masks for essential workers. During this time, a community of manufacturers, academic institutes, and hobbyists came together and tried to address the supply shortage by providing 3D-printed face shields and masks.
Although the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Human and Health Services and the Food and Drug Administration relaxed some of the liability and product regulations regarding 3D-printed medical supplies during the pandemic, the safety of 3D-printed face shields and masks is still a concern.
In this Review, we have highlighted some of the safety concerns related to printing materials, design consideration, waste generation and disposal, intellectual property and manufacturing regulations, and the sanitization of 3D-printed personal protective equipment.
– Authored by Nicolas Sananès, Massimo Lodi, Antoine Koch, Lise Lecointre, Axel Sananès, Nicolas Lefebvre & Christian Debry. European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, 6 November 2020
Testing for COVID-19 is a cornerstone of pandemic control. If conducted inappropriately, nasopharyngeal swab collection can be painful and preanalytical sample collection errors may lead to false-negative results. Our objective was to develop a realistic and easily available synthetic simulator for nasopharyngeal swab collection.
The nasopharyngeal swab collection simulator was designed through different development steps: segmentation, computer-aided design (CAD), and 3D printing. The model was 3D printed using PolyJet technology, which allows multi-material printing using hard and soft materials.
The simulator splits in the parasagittal plane close to the septum to allow better visualization and understanding of nasal cavity landmarks. The model is able to simulate the softness and texture of different structural elements. The simulator allows the user to conduct realistic nasopharyngeal swab collection. A colored pad on the posterior wall of the nasopharynx provides real-time feedback to the user. Additionally, the simulator also permits incorrect swab insertion, which is of obvious benefit from a training perspective.
Comprehensive 3D files for printing and full instructions for manufacturing the simulator is freely available online via an open-access link. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, we developed a nasopharyngeal swab collection simulator which can be produced by 3D printing via an open-access link, which offers complete operating instructions.