Custom Foot and Ankle Implants

Custom 3D Implants

The use of 3D printed technology has been used for many years across various industries and allow for custom products to be manufactured.  Currently, this customized technology is widely accessible in the medical setting, allowing surgeons to create personalized devices and solutions for patients. Within orthopedic surgery, 3D printing has allowed for the development of anatomical models that can be used to assist in preoperative planning  and  the development of patient specific instruments and implants that can be used intraoperatively. This technology is extremely helpful in complex  reconstruction situations where deformity, bone loss and bony defects can be challenging to manage. This exciting technology can be used to replace or support existing bone structure and to develop custom patient specific implants based on each individual patients’ anatomy.  

How is this done?

This process first starts out with a CT scan being performed on the involved extremity and we are able to take those images and convert them into 3D images.  These images essentially capture each patient’s specific anatomic or pathologic features which is then utilized to plan a surgery and create customized implants or instrumentation with the use of advanced 3D medical printers.  The surgeons at Ankle Arthritis Centers collaborate with design engineers and a team to come up with a surgical plan and can modify and tweak the custom implant as needed in each individual patient.  This team approach is very important in not only the surgical procedure, but helps ensure the best possible outcomes.  Once the plan is reviewed and approved by the surgeon, the patient specific plan then sent for manufacturing or 3D printing. Upon completion, the custom 3D printed part is sent to the hospital and prepared for surgery.  Before the surgery, Dr. Cottom and Dr. McAlister reviews the detailed pre-operative plan with the patient and then performs the surgery according to the plan!

Custom 3D implants are becoming more widespread within orthopedic surgery. This technology provides surgeons with tools to better tackle some of the more challenging clinical cases especially within the field of foot and ankle surgery.  The surgeons at Ankle Arthritis Centers are excited to provide this cutting-edge technology especially to those patients who come in for a 2nd opinion and were told they have no little to no options for their specific condition.


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If you have any questions about our services or how we can help, please contact us so we can start working with you on the road to restoring your ankle to it's full potential.