Newborn Who Was Missing Part of Her Skull and Given 4 Days to Live Saved by ‘Medical Miracle'

Newborn Who Was Missing Part of Her Skull and Given 4 Days to Live Saved by ‘Medical Miracle'

The 3D printing only provided a temporary solution and she would require more surgeries in the future.

A baby girl missing a portion of her skull had life-saving 'innovative' surgery using 3D printing technology. The child from Rzeszow, Poland, was born with a congenital abnormality that caused about one-fifth of her skull to not develop properly at the rear of her head. The abnormality was missed during prenatal screenings and was discovered only after she was born in February. It exposed brain tissue, making her vulnerable to diseases that would very surely have killed her if left untreated, per Daily Mail. Sygnis, a Warsaw-based 3D printing business, has aided and saved her life with a dangerously undeveloped cranium by manufacturing the precise model of the baby's skull in one day. Doctors were given four days to do surgery. In a very delicate two-hour process, they were able to patch her up using skin and soft tissue from different sections of her body.




The procedure went off without a hitch after doctors visualized and practiced on an identical copy of the child's skull. They took comprehensive images of her skull and sent them to a 3D printing business, which created a 1:1 replica. In Poland, doctors were able to practice fixing a newborn baby girl's shattered skull with an exact 3D-printed copy, saving her life. The researchers employed two separate technologies to, "avoid risk of failure and to provide surgeons with the widest possible possibilities." The procedure only provided a temporary solution to her problem, sealing the open region of her skull and preventing infection. In the future, she will require more procedures to rebuild the lost bone, which will also make use of 3D-printing technology, reports Ret News.




Her bones are still developing, therefore doctors are waiting for the skull to mature before undertaking the reconstructive surgery. In February, the girl was born in a hospital in Rzeszow, in Poland's south-east. She was subsequently moved to Krakow, a specialty children's hospital 100 kilometers away. Krakow experts used CT and MRI images to create an accurate virtual reconstruction of her skull. They transferred the model to a computer and shipped it to the country's capital, Warsaw, for 3D printing with nylon and resins. 




From start to finish, the printing took 26 hours, with two skulls created at the same time and shipped back to doctors at the University Children's Hospital. The surgeons utilized the skulls to recreate the difficult process and identify any complications that may arise during surgery. To prevent infections in her brain, the newborn was kept isolated in an incubator. Through a tube, she was fed her mother's milk. Professor Łukasz Krakowczyk, who carried out the operation, told the outlet, "This is a very rare defect, and during my 20 years of experience this is the first time I have had to face such a procedure. So for me, it was a very innovative procedure. About a fifth of the skull surface was missing, so it was a very large defect."

He added, "The operation had to be carried out urgently because part of the brain was exposed, which threatened to infect the central nervous system." 




Cover Image Source: Getty Images/Westend61