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Modeling-Based Assessment of 3D Printing-Enabled Meniscus Transplantation

Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Healthcare 2019, 7(2), 69;
Received: 8 April 2019 / Revised: 2 May 2019 / Accepted: 7 May 2019 / Published: 10 May 2019
PDF [2404 KB, uploaded 10 May 2019]


3D printing technology is able to produce personalized artificial substitutes for patients with damaged menisci. However, there is a lack of thorough understanding of 3D printing-enabled (3DP-enabled) meniscus transplantation and its long-term advantages over traditional transplantation. To help health care stakeholders and patients assess the value of 3DP-enabled meniscus transplantation, this study compares the long-term cost and risk of this new paradigm with traditional transplantation by simulation. Pathway models are developed to simulate patients’ treatment process during a 20-year period, and a Markov process is used to model the state transitions of patients after transplantation. A sensitivity analysis is also conducted to show the effect of quality of 3D-printed meniscus on model outputs. The simulation results suggest that the performance of 3DP-enabled meniscus transplantation depends on quality of 3D-printed meniscus. The conclusion of this study is that 3DP-enabled meniscus transplantation has many advantages over traditional meniscus transplantation, including a minimal waiting time, perfect size and shape match, and potentially lower cost and risk in the long term. View Full-Text
Keywords: 3D printing; Markov model; meniscus transplantation; pathway model 3D printing; Markov model; meniscus transplantation; pathway model

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Zhang, Z.; Wu, Q.; Zeng, L.; Wang, S. Modeling-Based Assessment of 3D Printing-Enabled Meniscus Transplantation. Healthcare 2019, 7, 69.

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