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  • The Role of 3-D Modeling in Patient Education of Facial Pain Syndromes

    Final Number:

    Megan M Jack MD, PhD; Mairaj Sami; Alex Shearin; Michael Kinsman MD

    Study Design:
    Clinical Trial

    Subject Category:

    Meeting: Congress of Neurological Surgeons 2018 Annual Meeting

    Introduction: Technology is increasingly being utilized to educate both surgeons and patients. 3-D printing technology that simulates patient specific anatomy for surgical planning is thought to increase procedural accuracy and aid in determining needed equipment and resources, as well as increasing surgeon confidence. Similarly, this technology will better assist in patient education by allowing the physician to discuss the pathology and surgical treatment with the patient using the model made from the patient’s MRI scan. Currently, there are few studies using 3-D printed models to educate patients undergoing surgical interventions in the literature.

    Methods: We utilized 3-D printing technology to create 10 patient-specific, three dimensional models of the brainstem, trigeminal or facial nerve, and any associated vasculature. These models were used to educate the patient about their facial pain condition along with the surgical procedure. Prior to this education, patients completed a survey regarding their baseline knowledge of their diagnosis. Patients filled out a second survey to access their knowledge after the education session and overall satisfaction regarding the use of the 3D model.

    Results: Following education with a patient-specific 3-D model, patients with facial pain syndromes demonstrated improved knowledge regarding their diagnosis, pathophysiology, and treatment options. Similarly, patient satisfaction regarding the use of the model was high.

    Conclusions: 3-D printing technology can facilitate pre-operative surgical education regarding the diagnosis and treatment options for facial pain syndromes.

    Patient Care: 3-D printing technology can aid in pre-operative surgical education regarding the diagnosis, pathophysiology, and treatment options for facial pain syndromes.

    Learning Objectives: By the conclusion of this session, participants should be able to: 1) Describe how 3-D models can be used to educate patients 2) Discuss the benefits of using a 3-D model for education of facial pain syndromes 3) Identify other novel applications for 3-D printing technology


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