Brit expat receives first 3D printed prosthesis in Dubai

Published:  1 Jun at 6 PM
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Tagged: Dubai, UAE
British expat Belinda Gatland has received a 3D printed prosthetic leg from the Dubai Health Authority as part of the emirate’s 3D Khair Year of Giving initiate.

The British equine physiotherapy specialist and sometime jockey lost her leg 10 years ago following a riding accident, and is the first in Dubai to receive a fully 3D printed prosthesis. After her accident, her life changed dramatically as she’d needed repeated operations but still lost her left leg due to bone death. Her expensive conventional prosthesis allowed her to regain a degree of mobility, but was heavier and with less flexibility.

Belinda told the local media her new leg had been specially customised for her, adding it’s far lighter, ‘fits like a glove’, gives more bounce and almost feels like a real leg. The prosthesis is also cost-effective, she said, comparing the £2,500 cost of her previous artificial leg to the new, far cheaper one. The technology is sure to benefit amputee children cost-wise, as they need to change prostheses as they grow.

Dubai Health Authority chairman Humaid al Qatami told the media he is keen to introduce this and other new technologies in order to further improve patient-centred care and improve lives. Dr Mohammed al Redha believes projects such as 3D printing can help develop a more sustainable and integrated approach to healthcare in the emirate. Describing the results of research into the new technology a learning curve for all involved, he added it opens the door for future research into the benefits of 3D printing in the UAE.

Sebastian Giede, the orthopaedic prosthetist who worked with the printed leg, believes the new manufacturing technique has huge potential when applied to prosthetics. With its faster turnaround times added to vastly improved personalisation in functionality and design and greater flexibility on replacement, 3D printing is set to revolutionise the provision of prosthetic limbs.

Source: Khaleej Times
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