Author + information
- Received March 17, 1999
- Revision received July 27, 1999
- Accepted September 14, 1999
- Published online January 1, 2000.
- Thomas M Binder, MD∗,
- Deddo Moertl, MD∗,
- Gerald Mundigler, MD∗,
- Gerhard Rehak∗,
- Manfred Franke∗,
- Georg Delle-Karth, MD∗,
- Werner Mohl, MD†,
- Helmut Baumgartner, MD, FACC∗ and
- Gerald Maurer, MD, FACC∗,* ()
- ↵*Reprint requests and correspondence: Dr. Thomas Binder, Department of Cardiology, University of Vienna, AKH, Währingergürtel 18-20, Vienna A-1090, Austria.
This study investigated the feasibility, accuracy and clinical potential of creating polymer hard copies of echocardiographic data using stereolithography.
Three-dimensional (3D) echocardiography has so far been limited by the need to display reconstructed 3D objects on a two-dimensional screen. Thus, tangible stereolithographic polymer models created from echocardiographic data could enhance our spatial perception of cardiac anatomy and pathology.
Hard-copy replicas of water-filled latex balloon phantoms (n = 7) and porcine liver specimens (n = 12) were generated from echocardiographic images using stereolithography (computerized laser polymerization). In addition, we created 24 models of the mitral valve from 12 transesophageal studies (normal = 6, mitral stenosis n = 4, prolapse/flail leaflet n = 8, annular dilation n = 2, leaflet restriction n = 2 and following mitral valve repair n = 2).
Excellent agreement was found for comparison of volumes (r = 0.98, SEE = 3.46 mm3, mean difference = 0.25 ± 3.33 mm3) and maximal dimensions (r = 0.99, SEE = 0.16 cm, mean difference = 0.03 ± 0.16 cm) between phantoms and their corresponding replicas. Visual and tactile examination of mitral valve models by two blinded observers allowed correct depiction of mitral valve anatomy and pathology in all cases.
Stereolithographic modeling of echocardiographic images is feasible and provides tangible polyacrylic models that are true to scale, shape and volume. Such models offer accurate depiction of mitral valve anatomy and pathology in patients studied with transesophageal echocardiography. This technique could have substantial impact on diagnosis, management and preoperative planning in complex cardiovascular disorders.
☆ No financial support was received for this study.
- Received March 17, 1999.
- Revision received July 27, 1999.
- Accepted September 14, 1999.
- American College of Cardiology