Casts made by 3-D printing, light, durable and waterproof

Light, durable, and waterproof, the Cortex Exoskeletal cast is one of the first innovations in orthopedic cast technology in decades.

Screen shot 2013-07-16 at 9.30.45 AM

The Cortex Exoskeletal cast, a nylon cast created with 3-D printing technologies, could be the first major change in decades to the old plaster and fiberglass orthopedic casts used to treat broken bones.

Jake Evill of New Zealand designed the superhero-inspired exoskeleton after spending months in an uninspired plaster cast after sustaining injuries from a fight.

“I was surprised by just how non-user friendly those cumbersome things are,” Evill said in an interview with Wired. “Wrapping an arm in two kilos of clunky, and soon to be smelly and itchy, plaster in this day and age seemed somewhat archaic to me.”

Anyone who has spent time in a cast can relate. Standard casts, made of fiberglass or plaster, are not very wearer-friendly. They can degrade when exposed to moisture, forcing people with casts to get creative with keeping them dry in a shower.

Screen shot 2013-07-16 at 9.33.42 AM

Evill designed a new type of cast with these limitations in mind. With a durable nylon mesh that resembles the nature-optimized cells of an insect’s wing, the exoskeleton is light, durable, breathable, and can survive getting wet. As an added bonus for the eco-conscious patient, the cast is recyclable.

Although the cast has yet to be subjected to tests or regulatory approval, Evill has plans for how it would be used in the event of a fracture. Upon arrival to an emergency room, a patient would get the standard X-ray that would confirm the location of the fracture, as well as a 3-D scan of the affected limb. An individualized design would be created, based on the shape of the person’s limb with extra reinforcement around the area of the fracture.

The design would be printed using a 3-D printer and nylon, and would be snapped into place around the fractured limb.

In addition to looking better than traditional casts, the Cortex exoskeleton is thin enough to wear underneath clothing. Conversely, it allows skin to breathe in hot, muggy weather.

While the Cortex exoskeleton is a long way from widespread use, its new design could benefit many. In an infographic featured on his website, Evill provides information on the ubiquity of fractured bones. In the U.S., 6.4 million fractures occur annually, and 2.4 out of 100 people are expected to get a fracture in a given year. Over the course of an average lifetime, a person could expect to experience two fractures.




Source : Medical Daily | July 13, 2013


About thomasdinnocenzi

Thomas D'Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused senior international executive with extensive experience in global sourcing and market development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global sourcing operations worldwide. Extensive experience in international market development operations to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, benchmarking performance, and restricting organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. As principal of Nova Advisors, LLC I’ve assembled an exemplary team that brings with them the knowledge and experience gained from starting up a Global Sourcing program with multiple Fortune 500 companies as well as the largest supplier network throughout the Asia-Pacific region. We have experience and expertise in more than a thousand medical and pharmaceutical products in manufacturing and sourcing at the best value. The right product, the right price point and the right branding fueled these successes that resulted in double-digit growth for top line sales and bottom line net margins for our customers. What sets us apart: • Our reach includes a large network of suppliers & manufacturers spanning 13 countries in Asia-Pacific region • We understand the manufacturing process and the business of the supplier and the buyer • Our company culture is based on quality assurance and our process is based on local quality control Our commitment is to be your partner offering the best products and services at the lowest cost. Contact me to discuss how we can make the global marketplace work for you. In addition, I am open to discussing opportunities in global sourcing, international marketing & sales, logistics and medical/pharma in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines & Japan. Aside from my work I enjoy piano, astronomy, physics, and assisting my daughters with their studies. SPECIALTIES: Global Sourcing, Supply Chain Management, Business Development, Marketing, Logistics, Global Networking, Market Development, Healthcare Solutions, Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, Technology, Asia, Southeast Asia, US and Canada
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One Response to Casts made by 3-D printing, light, durable and waterproof

  1. Thanks! Exactly the info I was looking for (found your site via photo look up on Goggle as I didn’t know manufacturer).

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