Big Improvement in Bioabsorbable Stents Market by the Development of First Practical Bioresorbable 3D-printed Airway Stent

Posted On March 04, 2021     

Several diseases and injuries lead to main bronchi or the trachea narrowing, in turn making it hard for individuals to breathe, and such people might start suffering from lack of oxygen. The only way to find relief is through surgical methods; however, typically, metal or silicon stents require second surgeries so that they can be removed from a human’s body.

A recent study has brought forward 3D printable bioresorbable airway stents that may help counter these situations. It would be a significant advancement in the Bioabsorbable Stents Market as these stents will not have to be surgically removed later but can be absorbed by a patient’s body after some time, and so there will be no need for a second surgery for currently available stents.

Researchers revealed that to build such stents, they used digital light processing 3D processing technology by making use of light-sensitive resins. This allowed the creation of bioresorbable airway stents that can be left in the patient’s body. After some time, these implants would automatically be absorbed by an individual’s body and disappear completely without any need for recent surgeries.

The new type of stent will be better for patients than metal airway stents, which have to be removed through invasive surgery and silicone airway stents also require surgery, sometimes when they move away from the implant site.
Although Digital light processing is not a new concept, it could only produce stiff and brittle objects by using biodegradable materials. Scientists developed a new resin to solve this problem. This resin is both elastic and bioresorbable, making it perfect for producing a new generation of implantable airway stents. This new light-sensitive resin is made of two different macromonomers that join together when they are exposed to UV light.

The resin has several disadvantages as well. It becomes too brutal to handle at room temperature, so scientists had to work on it at a temperature of 90-90 degrees Celsius. Moreover, special instruments are required to implant these stents as they need to be folded without any kinks.

To test these stents, researchers performed tests on rabbits to prove that 3D-printed stents are indeed safe. They concluded that their newly developed implants are biocompatible and would only need 6-7 weeks to be entirely absorbed by the body. They stated that at a short period of 10 weeks, one would not be able to detect the stent through X-ray images.

This development may open up prospects for mass production of customized medical implants and devices with the utmost need to be accurate, elastic, and degradable in the body. Even though this can be considered considerable progress, scientists still need to figure out how stents can be inserted as delicately as possible. Besides, they need to look at ways to increase their production as of now, and these stents can only be produced in laboratory settings.

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