If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine what a 3D model may be able to tell us. Radiologists at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) hope the rise of three-dimensional printing may be able to help children who are victims of child abuse.
Researchers took CT scans and X-rays of a patient’s rib cage, then used those images to construct a 3D model. A pediatric radiologist who was not familiar with the patient’s case was able to identify all of the injuries and their healing stage by just examining the model.
The findings were published today in Pediatric Radiology.
“This is an amazing breakthrough, especially for children involved in child abuse cases,” says Christian Barrera, MD, lead author and clinical research coordinator in the Department of Radiology. “If a doctor can actually pick up and see a 3D model of a child’s injuries instead of just an image, we may be able to help more children get out of abusive situations.”
Members of the Child Protection Team of Safe Place: The Center for Child Protection and Health, also reviewed the models and believe they could be useful in court cases.