University of Miami orthopedic surgeons replace ankle with 3D-printed metallic implant

Written by Alan Condon | September 09, 2019 | Print  | Email

Orthopedic surgeons Amiethab Aiyer, MD, and Stephen Quinnan, MD, recently performed an ankle replacement with a 3D-printed talus bone at the University of Miami (Fla.) Miller School of Medicine.

Due to sickle cell disease, blood flow to the patient’s ankle became compromised, leading to the death of her talus bone in a condition called avascular necrosis.

After non-surgical approaches failed, the physicians took CT scans of the patient’s ankle and collaborated with a 3D-printing company to design a custom metallic bone based on the size of the patient’s talus. 

The UM surgeons tried three different sizes during surgery to find the best fit.

The patient was fitted with a 3D-printed cobalt chrome implant, which is often used in hip replacements and presents a more durable solution for the load-bearing ankle.

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