3D printing has come a long way in the field of healthcare, helping to create affordable prosthesis and bio-compatible scaffolds for damaged bone and tissue. Now, the advancement has helped to save a wounded turtle found near Turkey. The turtle had been hit by a boat’s propeller–typically a life-ending event for most sea turtles–but was rescued and brought to Pamukkale University’s Sea Turtle Research, Rescue and Rehabilitation center in Denizli, Turkey. The center collaborated with Turkish company, Btech Innovation to send scans of the turtle’s wounded jaw and damaged bones. Btech Innovation used the scans to create a 3D printed, titanium jaw for the wounded turtle, then mailed the piece to the rescue site. At press time, the turtle was healing nicely from the injury, and provided its body does not reject the 3D printed jaw, the turtle should be back to its home in the ocean.
The rescue efforts here provide an excellent example of how 3D printing could one day provide emergency aid to those in remote locations with badly broken bones or injuries that required amputation. To learn more about the rescue and how the titanium jaw was printed, click on the video above.
(Source: Popular Science)