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Revista Española de Cardiología (English Edition) Revista Española de Cardiología (English Edition)
Rev Esp Cardiol. 2017;70:282-91 - Vol. 70 Num.04 DOI: 10.1016/j.rec.2017.01.012

Three-dimensional Printed Cardiac Models: Applications in the Field of Medical Education, Cardiovascular Surgery, and Structural Heart Interventions

Israel Valverde a,b,c,d,

a Sección de Cardiología y Hemodinámica Pediátrica, Servicio de Pediatría, Hospital Virgen del Rocío, Sevilla, Spain
b Paediatric Cardiology, Evelina London Children's Hospital at Guy's and St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London, United Kingdom
c Division of Imaging Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, King's College London, The Rayne Institute, St. Thomas’ Hospital, London, United Kingdom
d Grupo de Fisiopatología Cardiovascular, Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla, IBIS, Hospital Virgen de Rocío/CSIC/Universidad de Sevilla, Seville, Spain


Three-dimensional printing. Congenital heart disease. Structural heart disease.


In recent years, three-dimensional (3D) printed models have been incorporated into cardiology because of their potential usefulness in enhancing understanding of congenital heart disease, surgical planning, and simulation of structural percutaneous interventions. This review provides an introduction to 3D printing technology and identifies the elements needed to construct a 3D model: the types of imaging modalities that can be used, their minimum quality requirements, and the kinds of 3D printers available. The review also assesses the usefulness of 3D printed models in medical education, specialist physician training, and patient communication. We also review the most recent applications of 3D models in surgical planning and simulation of percutaneous structural heart interventions. Finally, the current limitations of 3D printing and its future directions are discussed to explore potential new applications in this exciting medical field.

1885-5857/© 2017 Sociedad Española de Cardiología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved