Multi-dimensional printing in thoracic surgery: current and future applications
Three-dimensional (3D) printing has been gaining much attention in the medical field in recent years. At present, 3D printing most commonly contributes in pre-operative surgical planning of complicated surgery. It is also utilized for producing personalized prosthesis, well demonstrated by the customized rib cage, vertebral body models and customized airway splints. With on-going research and development, it will likely play an increasingly important role across the surgical fields. This article reviews current application of 3D printing in thoracic surgery and also provides a brief overview on the extended and updated use of 3D printing in bioprinting and 4D printing.