To explore the the rapeutic effect and the biomechanical mechanism of 3D printing individualized heel cup in treating of plantar heel pain, scholars from Drum Tower Hospital Affiliated to Medical School of Nanjing University have applied 3D digitizing and 3D printing technology in their research. The research proofed that the 3D printed individualized heel cup could be used as an effective method for the treatment of plantar heel pain.

What is the plantar heel pain? 

Plantar heel pain (PHP) is a painful syndrome that occurs around the calcaneus. The chronic pain could lead to a reduction in sporting and everyday activities.

 

Research Method 

The experiment was divided into three parts: heel cup design and fabrication, clinical evaluation and FE model simulation. In the process of heel cup design and fabrication, patients’ feet and calve were scanned by EinScan-Pro, multi-functional handheld 3D scanner, using handheld rapid scan mode, and scans were exported in STL file. Edited in the CAD software, the designed data was then printed out by 3D printer of selective laser sintering (SLS) technology.

By data analyzing the patients’ status with and without the 3D printed plantar heel cup and collecting feedback from patients, the result demonstrated that the individualized heel cup by the combination of 3D scanning and 3D printing was an effective method for the treatment of plantar heel pain. While SHINING 3D provides both EinScan handheld 3D scanners and 3D printers of various technologies, it meets all the demands of customization, creating patients the 3D printed plantar heel cup with a perfect fit.

To view the full article, please visit https://doi.org/10.1186/s12967-018-1547-y