(Sat05) The cast of the future

you can itch and shower which is a plus. The down side is the 3D printing of the cast takes around three hours whereas a plaster cast is three to nine minutes, but requires 24-72 hours to be fully set.

 The cortex cast utilizes the x-ray and 3d scan of a patient with a fracture and generates a 3d model in relation to the point of fracture.

more info on the concept -http://jakevilldesign.dunked.com/cortex
Anne Trieber's profile photoKara Ashby's profile photoAlex Denholm's profile photoMichael Reese's profile photo
Ian Milne
I could have used this cast when I broke my wrist a couple years ago!
Eric Cha
Umm, how does one put it on?  If you have a severe break, I don't think pushing your limb through it would be a good idea... Does it have some sort of hinges that allow it to open?
+Eric Cha Exactly what I was thinking.... how do these people with broken limbs put on this cast without discomfort?
+Eric Cha I belive it is 3D printed probably in two section though it is not clear. or it could be printed up to a point then the patient puts their limb into the cast for the printer to complete printing around the limb.
Eric Cha
+michael interbartolo- I doubt you could print around an arm with a typical 3d printer.  I'm thinking that this is mostly a conceptual idea more than a real-life product at this point...
yeah it probably would take an advance in 3D printing, but definitely an interesting concept.
if the materal is flexable enough in theory you could just leave one open spot in the design then just fold it over the limb. but if it was that flexable would it be strong enough for a cast.?
Easily make it in two sections and secure them together. Zip ties to the rescue again ;)
RTA; It isn't printed ON the arm. it is printed off it and attached with special fasteners. 
Bob Leo, and what makes me so mad is that it feels like we seem to be so happy and content just to get the next smartphone. there is just so much we could do if someone got the space race going again.
that is seriously cool, I do recall somebody once who cut his cast open and made his own version for cycling, then put a zipper in the original cast so he could wear that the rest of the time
It his wouldve been very helpful wend I broke my hand
+Derick Williams it is trying to be more open yet denser at the injured location. I never had a cast so I am not familiar with how those get put on. I assumed they wrapped your limb then dipped it in the plaster is that not the case?
Great! You can use different flexible polymers that can set rigid with different setting techniques. Btw, you scratch an itch, you don't itch an itch.
+michael interbartolo In a traditional plaster cast, they dip the wet bandage strips into the plaster then wrap them around your padded limb. The padding just wraps right over the limb and is held in place by the plastered bandage.
Flesh tone would be ideal aesthetically
clever but needs two things to be viable.

1. A hinge system to make it easy and painless to put on a person with a fracture bone.. One that does not destroy the already fragile looking open form.

2. A different material than used in current 3D printing.
You do not want PBC or APC plastics rubbing against your skin 24/7. Not only are there chemicals in there that would irritate the skin, but potentially dangerous when being headed by body temperature and rubbed against the skin all the time.
I love how people just look at the picture instead of reading the story...its getting as bad as that other place anymore.
I know there are, but would that be cost effective for the average person to get as a replacement for a regular cast? :)
Those materials are usually much more expensive to use than what is traditionally being used in 3D printers.
As I said, its clever over all and I hope it becomes a viable option in the future.
Well +Chris Barger , it was a real pain to read on my phone; note to author: "making the reader select and zoom on an image in order read content can cause undue effort effectively alienating them."

Embedding images in text is easier on the eyes and less effort for readers.

Cool cast design! Never had a broken arm, but it seems something like a ski boot could be ideal for bones around the ankle, this takes it one giant step further.
Wish they had that when I broke my arm! Taking a shower suuuuckedd! 
I wish I had this when I broke my arm the itching was bad you know how hard it is to get a pen inside a cast to itch 
What will cause 2003 wolkwagen passat to burn a lot of gas

Is that more than a concept? Can you really hold the fracture in the proper place for 3hrs?
Interesting but not ready for prime time. Keep working on it.
+michael interbartolo oh! Great! Thanks. A hospital once charged our insurance $1000 to cut the cast. Outrageous. I wonder how much 3d printing this costs today and how much it will cost in 3 yrs... How costly is the 'individualized design'?
+Christophe Leroy The fracture doesn't have to be held in place for 3 hours. You just have to have someone sitting in the hospital in a sling for 3 hours while the machine prints the cast that is tailor-made for the person. After it is printed, it can presumably be put on the person quite quickly.

While plaster casts take much longer to fully harden, they can put them on and get you out the door quite fast. If you have to wait 3 hours after you've been seen and scanned for the cast to be made, docs won't be so happy. 
Joe Y
Looks much cooler than the existing ones
But where are friends going to sign their name? Perhaps on little ribbons you attach on the 'eyes' of the exoskeleton...
Air filteration ,fuel requires air mix / also could be an air intake
Yes. This it's certainly preferred!
Cool / comfort / add designer colours and tje money wil follow. And like everything else we' ll all get one.koodos

Could this be used to prevent the breaking of an arm in a high contact sport?
No.... How are all your school friends going to sign it?! 
Wait but don't casts cost money and in a sense wouldn't it cost more money?
sadly no it can't prevent that because it was made to be used for fasion not sports. 
A cast typically cannot be put on immediately after the fracture occurs because the limb swells too much. If there was a cast on, the swelling inside the cast would put too much pressure on the limb and cut off circulation, much like a tourniquet. Broken limbs are usually put in a temporary splint for 2-3 days, then casted. This 3d printed cast is based on x rays and there would be plenty of time for the cast to be printed by the time the swelling resolves.
Oh what that would do for ER wait times.  I'm sure it will get faster though :)
Looks like something Spiderman would wear ^_^
Printing objects just looks like one of those things that's about to change everything. The cost of small scale work is coming down so fast. While simultaneously there is some massive innovation by way of software taking place. And then applications one can imagine have no end. 
Awsome,the way of the future...
Just a standard splint for me. Forget doctors, not worth the time, effort or cost IMHO. 
awsome makes me wanna break an arm now
Takes 3 hours now... I use to wait 2 hours to print a banner on my commodore 64, it would take 4 passes to do 1 line of asci..... it will improve. 
I caint sign that,,,,, js lol
Heh... I can see folks printing their own casts at home and bypassing our lovely healthcare system & its red tape in the not-too-distant future. :)
fantastic...and I used to construct (and fit, and get rid of the rough areas) the plaster  casts.
+Chris Barger Yes because dark grey text in miniscule font on a black background is easily read and noticeable...

Either way it would be interesting to see how the fasteners work.
This won't do..... You can't sign it. 
Don't you mean you can scratch and shower 
wish i had one of these a few days ago
Very interesting....curious to see if it catches on
Wish they had these back when I was breaking bones. 
Far Cue
it will get faster
This is Star Treck shit! Whaaaaa? 
This a great development in 3D printing.... Fusing technology with medical orthopedics... Thanks for the share +michael interbartolo 
I'm a nurse practitioner with over ten years of experience in orthopedics. This idea is great as a concept, but is unworkable IRL. First there is the problem of swelling as mentioned by others- it often takes days or even weeks for the swelling to go down enough for a permanent cast to be placed- we use splints and ace wraps until then. Second, 3 plus hours to print the thing is not feasible in the ED or in a doctors office.
The biggest problem I see is that many fractures are unstable. This means that the muscles pull the bones in such a way that the broken ends of the bone won't stay properly aligned unless they are held in position. This is usually fixed by one person holding the limb so the broken ends line up as well as possible, while another quickly applies the padding and casting material (plaster or fiberglass) and molds it to shape so that it will hold the fracture together until the bone heals. Limbs sometimes have to be bent to a specific angle and then casted as another way to prevent the fracture from falling apart again- for example, if you broke your leg, just above the knee, chances are you would show up at the ED with your leg bent. We would have to sedate you, pull your leg straight, and then apply the cast. The whole time, some poor schnook (sometimes me...) would have to keep pulling on the leg, holding it straight, until the plaster or fiberglass sets.
Cool cast. Wish I had one when I fractured my right arm playing soft ball in eighth grade!
I like that at least you can have a shower
That looks like freaking sp-rm streched out :o
Not sure why 3 hours waiting is an issue, your probably not going to do much for 3 hours after anyway.. but how do you get it on the arm, do you assemble it??
Its awesome but I guess no more friends can sign it... lol
Guy N D
Gather Round Children and Read!
If you click on the link you will be informed!
The arm is x-rayed and the image is used to develop and print a special 3D cast witb support, via tension, in the appropriate areas depending on the position of the fracture or fractures.
It is open on one side of the cast for easy access and has built in fasteners.
You May Go, The Lesson Has Now Finished!
I'd love to be able to wear my phone on my forearm... What you have here is the perfect solution; medical cast aside, this concept could really work to facilitate the uptake of wearable computing. Combine the arm wrapping mesh with a custom 'seat' for a particular phone model, which has a way of affixing to the mesh... Future fashion / tech combined - I'm in on that. Kickstarter plx.
Great idea and as far as putting on the patient there are numerous polymer adhesives as well as the option of an plastic welder type of tool, lots of options there.

 I would really think that color options would be popular but perhaps the most popular would be clear; very inconspicuous.
3D printer that would actually print the cast around your arm custom fit, that's why it takes much longer than a plaster cast
great……this will be so much more practical then the ones we use no days. i mean look at it compared to the ones we use now, i could call this design sexy

damn it. I LOVE the person who invented this
Makes me wanna go break my arm right now..Am I right??
I can see dark red ones with a brilliant P.R . Opportunity for Disney supplying casts forearms & legs as SPIDERMAN accessories .
Thus supporting our much needed cash injections & making life not so stressful for little ones with a need. Great News!
Oh sexy fishnet tights....can't wait to see women with broken legs.......lol only joking
There's always that itch that lies under the border, that's far beyond reach, that's so annoying that you'll feel like ripping the cast apart. 
This is nothing new, thermoplastic casts have been in use since 1996.
It sets in minutes and doesn't require a printer. 
I recently had to wear a cast. If I had the one above, it would have made things somewhat easier for me.
It lets me think of those styrofoam nets that sometimes cover fruits to protect them:p
Cool idea, casts in the summer are not great. Who still uses plaster though? Should compare to fiberglass.
I would have thought the formation of the honeycomb section would have been uniform for strength, impressive thought though
Looool You can't print around someone's arm, they would be straight back in a&e and into the burns unit.
Nice thought but it would either be to flexible or to firm to put around a broken arm, ahahahaaa
People take this 3d printing thing too far, like printing foods going to solve a food crisis, it has to be edable before it goes in! wtf? 3 hours later........ look I made an twinkie!
do they do the other parts of the body like neck, legs & full arm casts
It doesn't matter since nowadays time moves super fast. Great invention 
So basically it is a see through plaster cast?????? Why didn't anyone think of that before
Sarah G
Thats so awesome for all the accident prone people
I'd rather science worked on how to make our skeletons turn into adamantium!
We have 2 3D printers at work, one is typical PLA plastic and the other sinters Ti with a laser.  It would not be as light as the plastic, but it would be 100X stronger. 
Cool concept and I wish I would have had this for my son about 6 years ago...plaster casts for anyone are just a pain in the ass.
Have already seen people wearing these in different colors at physical rehabilitation..... They are great since they permit swimming.
ola ola
I need some one by my side
It s a wonderfull idea.had it a year ago.airy nd light...plus molds exactly where needed.
now they have to put acrylic paint on it and walla!
S Ring
what is acrylic paint
Plus, it would give you some really cool looking tan lines!
Got it...thanks.....but it will look very noticeable. .....cause usually
when I have such problem I wouldn't want others to notice
But I do like it very much if it is for a supercool knee protection, gym function purpose
Adding 3 hours to your stay in the ED is not feasible, given that wait times can be 12+ hours for non life-threatening injuries. They need to be able to see you, treat you and discharge you ASAP.

The other problem is that casts are applied to make the bone stay the shape it should be. CT scans and x-rays only show you how it is. Getting it from where it is to where it should be requires manipulation by someone with a fair amount of upper body strength, and a very specific skill set. There have been times when we had to cut off the cast we just applied, because an x-ray showed the fracture had become misaligned at some point during the casting process. The idea of a spray-on cast like FabriCan is working on sounds more feasible to me, but I'm not sure if even that will have the structural strength necessary.
I agree that the printed casts are gorgeous, and there may be a place for them in the subacute phase- after the swelling has gone down, and the fracture is starting to heal, but still needs to be held steady until the process is complete, but it will not work for you to walk into the ED (A&E to you Brits) and walk out with one of these.
Understand......well it does make yhe patients feels cool
wish I had one of these on my leg right now instead of the one I have
Plaster is rarely used for a full cast anymore. Fiberglass is used now sometimes gortex padding so it can get wet. This concept is good but as an orthopedic surgical nurse I don't see it being cost effective or practical for everyday practice.
I'd love to have one of those!!! I can hardly do push ups after fracturing my wrist last year. #Sad
Jennifer- I disagree. I saw plaster used and helped used plaster for casting about as much as fiberglass, especially for things like an unstable Colle's fracture, primarily because it is much harder to mold fiberglass during the casting. This was, admittedly, for initial casts. Once there was callus formation, my docs would often switch to fiberglass for all the reasons people have commented - lighter, waterproof, tougher, etc. my comments are that this printed cast is great in theory, but would not be useful for acute fractures. It would be great for subacute fractures, or for functional splinting in tendon injuries. The technique would be great for making leg braces to use after ACL/PCL repairs... If the material had some flex, you could gradually increase ROM by selectively cutting away struts while still maintaining lateral stability....
Wow...I've had four casts in my life...this would have been awesome ..maybe next time..lololol
Another downside-friends can't sign these casts
oooh wellll.... it is ok, they can sign with sharpies between the webbing LOL.
I seem to itch just fine with a traditional cast. But this printed one would make scratching easier. 
My 7 yr old son would have loved to have this prototype with a broken arm in South FL in July! Hopefully, once it's released, he'll have outgrown the breaking bones stage....
It s a wonderfull idea.had it a year ago.airy nd light...plus molds exactly where needed.
Lol it seems like one of those fruit covers 
Just FYI. This cast couldn't be printed around a limb as the printer itself uses a laser to heat a plastic powder to create this shape later by layer. The laser would therefore leave the limb really quite burnt lol
paint it black and add some spikes!
Omg I need one I have got a broken wrist
The cast could be made, cut and reattached at key points with light reactive glue, but, except for some handgun and Ak 47s, it is the first indication of something widely and truly useful to kickoff a technical revolution comparable to the computers of the 1990s.
is it bad that I want to break my arm just so I can have a reason to get one of these?
Awesome, something new and better.
Nobody will be able to sign it, like your friends and stuff.
Its obviously 3D printed over the arm with different materials and at high speed. Kinda like on the movie 5th element
It looks like tripe. 
Thanks for the visual Kyle, : )
Um where are signatures gonna go? You can't have a cast without space for names!
If this works just as well as a regular cast, I wish I had it when I broke my wrist.
Tory S
Wooooah!! Cool!
You can probably carry a six pack on it
It would be better 4 showering and itching. It would be very light 2 wear and the wearer would be more comfortable.
You would get some sick tan lines in the summer
Elegant solution and ...makes for an interesting sun tan after it's removed. 
Why would being able to itch be a plus? I would like to be able to scratch* when I do have an itch though...
I had a cast put on my ankle a few years ago, it took minutes for it to set, not hours. Who still uses plaster casts?
I hope I didn't make a fool my first time out .
Clasic cool....charmey vinod jain
interbartolo's photo »
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what email Google+ sends you.Geeze free speech has morphed into this
"Verbal Speed Dating" @!!
+Ian Huey
the text on the image is hard to read on a phone, (it's even hard to read on my laptop), but you can try the link to the story under it.
Breathable, would avoid the itching, and you woul be able to bathe. Awsome concept.
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