Why Digital Technology

Why Digital Technology

Why Should I Try Additive Manufacturing In My Practice?

Many professionals feel there is no benefit to adopting digital fabrication methods into their workflow. But additive manufacturing provides many benefits. Although certain aspects of orthotics and prosthetics are currently not suited for digital fabrication, the rapidly advancing technology is bound to infiltrate at least most aspects of orthotics and prosthetics. Here are some advantages of using additive manufacturing over traditional methods. 

  1. Cost-Effectiveness: One of the critical advantages of 3D printed orthotics and prosthetics is their cost-effectiveness. Compared to traditional devices, 3D printing significantly reduces production costs. This can be particularly beneficial for clinics or healthcare facilities with limited budgets or those working in resource-constrained settings. The affordability of 3D printing technology allows clinicians to provide high-quality prosthetic solutions to a broader range of patients.

  2. Customisation and Precision: 3D printing enables clinicians to create highly customised devices that precisely match the patient's anatomy and functional requirements. This level of customisation ensures fitting optimisation, improved comfort, and enhanced overall functionality. Clinicians can modify and iterate the design quickly, making adjustments based on patient feedback and providing a more patient-centric approach to prosthetic provision.

  3. Rapid Prototyping and Iteration: With 3D printing, clinicians can rapidly prototype and iterate prosthetic designs. This agile development process allows quick adjustments and improvements, reducing production time and enhancing patient outcomes. Clinicians can efficiently address individual patient needs, ensuring that the prosthetic device is well-suited to the specific functional requirements of each patient.

  4. Functional Complexity: 3D printing technology enables the creation of prostheses and orthoses with intricate and complex structures, incorporating joints, mechanical components, and other features that mimic natural movement. This enhances the functionality of the prosthetic, allowing patients to achieve a broader range of motion and perform more complex tasks. Clinicians can work closely with engineers and designers to optimise the functional aspects of the prosthetic, tailoring it to the patient's specific needs.

  5. Material Selection and Innovation: The versatility of 3D printing allows clinicians to explore various materials for prosthetic production. This opens up opportunities for innovation, enabling the use of advanced materials with specific properties such as strength, flexibility, and biocompatibility. Clinicians can leverage these materials to enhance the performance, durability, and comfort of the device they prescribe.

  6. 3D printing is a universal technology not only limited to orthotics and prosthetics. That means there is no need to invest in specialised equipment usually developed only for orthotic and prosthetic manufacturing. The machines that produce high-quality components are available globally in various applications and industries. That means you are bound to find a local company (like us) with the right equipment to produce your products. Take a look at our Technology section to discover the systems we make use of to get the job done right.