A printer that can save lives

First used in the 1980s for car manufacturing prototypes, 3D printing has grown to have a significant impact on medicine today, where it can provide solutions for complex or high-risk situations.

How do doctors use 3D printers? After taking a scan, such as a CT or an MRI, of a particular area, a specialised computer graphics programme uses these results to create the exact dimensions for of the same area. These are sent to a 3D printer, which outputs the replica, in a variety of biocompatible materials. When a delicate touch is needed From Michigan, USA, where researchers printed a splint to hold open a section of a baby’s airway[i], to Hangzhou, China, where a 21 year old man with a rare spinal tumour was fitted with a custom-designed prosthesis to reinforce damaged vertebrae[ii], Read more

Physiotherapy in Women’s Health

In this month’s physiotherapy post we look at special conditions affecting women and how physiotherapy can help in both prevention, treatment and recovery.

Physiotherapy in Women's Health refers to the therapeutic treatment of all dysfunctions affecting the pelvis and pelvic floor. Pelvic Floor: a complex structure composed of a group of muscles that support the pelvic organs and form the uterine canal and a passage for urine and faeces. These muscles not only need to contract in order to keep a woman continent, but they also need to relax to allow for the passage of urine and bowel movements, natural birth and sexual relations. Problems with the pelvic floor may arise when its muscles are either very weak (hypotonia) or very tense (hypertonia). A combination Read more

Health Insurance 2015: the year of the consumer

The insurance industry begins the New Year with a sense of cautious optimism. While private healthcare has shown growth in certain markets, important challenges lie ahead in reaching out to the consumer and keeping pace with technology.

Showing the human side of Protection If 2014 was the year to bring customers into focus, analyzing their needs and preferences, 2015 promises to turn analysis into to real, meaningful interaction. The UK insurance market, where significant advances have been made in benefits for insureds, is a good indicator of changes to come. In its review of the progress made to date and the challenges to come, the Association of British Insurers notes that “one of the ways UK insurers are working to make markets more effective for customers, shareholders and the economy is by improving the customer experience.”[i] Health insurance protection Read more