3D printing is a relatively new, rapidly expanding method of manufacturing that found numerous applications in healthcare, automotive, aerospace and in many other areas. Additive manufacturing or 3D printing is a process of making a three dimensional solid object of virtually any shape from a digital model. It consists of laying down successive layers of material in different shapes, each one printed directly on top of the previous one according to a computer program. Additive technology is distinct from traditional manufacturing techniques, which are subtractive processes in which material is removed using methods such as cutting or drilling.
3D printed orthoses offers numerous possibilities to existing orthotic applications where it can allow one the manufacture of objects that are impossible to obtain by any other fabrication method. Including manufacturing objects consisting of complex shapes and multiple thicknesses.
Printing materials are also highly diversified ranging from plastics (PLA, ABS, polyamide, nylon, etc.) to metals (Titanium, steel, Aluminium), rubber, and carbon fibers.
A recent review from the journal of foot and ankle research by Elizabeth Wojciechowski et. al (2019) concluded that the biomechanical effects and mechanical properties of 3D printed Ankle Foot Orthoses (AFO) were comparable to traditionally manufactured AFOs. And that by developing novel AFO designs using 3D printing has many potential benefits including stiffness
and weight optimisation to improve biomechanical function and comfort.
Here are the different orthoses we can 3D Print:
Watch the 3D Printed Process to making foot orthotics:
Clinical studies using 3D printing materials
More information on 3D Printing
Please contact us to arrange a consultation or if you would like more information on 3D Printing, call us on (02) 8710 4183.
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