Opportunities for additive manufacturing in personalized surgery

Opportunities for additive manufacturing in personalized surgery

Personal surgery segment is expected to generate an aggregated total of revenue generation of nearly $10B from 2018 to 2027.

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SmarTech Publishing has published an in-depth study on a major area of organic growth for the medical 3D printing industry – personal surgery applications combining anatomical medical models and patient specific surgical guides and tools. With awareness and use of these tools spreading beyond the early care segments into more mainstream surgical practice, these primary personal surgery applications will combine to create nearly $1.5B in total opportunities by 2027.

Other industries adopting 3D printing focus on the transition of existing applications from traditional to additive manufacturing (AM) technologies, but in the personal surgery segment, 3D printing is combining with key medical imaging technologies and software to create an entirely new segment for improved patient care, reduced surgical time and cost, and better diagnostic and screening.

Materialise’s 3D-printed maxillofacial implants get green light for US market

Materialise’s TRUMATCH titanium 3D-printed implants are part of a personalized total solution for corrective jaw surgery as well as for facial reconstruction. From virtual surgical planning to the 3D-printed implants used in combination with 3D-printed surgical guides, the system can help achieve better aesthetic results and minimize surgery time for patients.

Materialise’s patient-specific implants will be distributed by DePuy Synthes under the TRUMATCH CMF brand name

These are the first 3D-printed titanium maxillofacial implants to receive clearance for the U.S. market, making 3D printing technology more accessible than ever for the U.S. healthcare industry. The solution relies on the Materialise backbone of services, tapping into their software development, clinical engineering and 3D printing production facilities.

The potential benefits are not lost on the medical community, and future growth is being catalyzed by direct adoption of 3D printing technologies by hospitals themselves, who are keen to establish their own supply chain of 3D printed models and on-demand surgical instrumentation through the establishment of in-house 3D print laboratories.


This new study focuses on the two primary applications which began to impact the practice of surgery over two decades ago – 3D printed anatomical models, and printed patient specific cutting, drilling, and other guides. This report seeks to provide a segmented opportunity analysis for all related opportunities, including use of printed models for pre-surgical planning, but also for medical device development and for medical training.


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More than 120 pages of in-depth analysis and market data provide medical device manufacturers, orthopedic solutions providers, medical print services providers, healthcare group administrators and clinical engineers a look into the real possibilities of integrating 3D printing directly into the surgical workflow. Market forecasts for this report include:

  • Specific revenue generation opportunities resulting from the use of AM/3DP for personal surgery applications, encompassing the sale of AM/3DP hardware, print materials, print software, and outsourced production and clinical engineering service
  • Hardware unit sales to support additive production of anatomical models and surgical guides and tools, in unit sales, installations, and revenue, by print technology
  • Production volume forecasts for medical models and guides by surgical focus (hip, spine, cranial, etc), and resulting outsourced printing revenue opportunities for the production of such devices

In addition to market forecasts, the report also provides exploration of the value proposition for various models and surgical guides, backed by an extensive review of medical research to quantify the potential for cost reductions in surgery, improvement of patient outcomes, as well as associated challenges related to costs. Finally, an entire chapter is also dedicated to exploring the applicability of major printer technologies and materials for various personal surgery applications, providing medical administrators and leaders a no-nonsense guide as to which technologies may be best to explore for in-house adoption in the hospital.

  • The personal surgery segment of the medical 3D printing market provides an excellent short term “low hanging fruit” opportunity for the growth in current print technologies worldwide, contrasted against other adopting segments where technical and certification barriers are slowing adoption trends. With an estimated current worldwide production volume in the hundreds of thousands, growth over the forecast period in the printing of models and guides will exceed 24% compounded annually
  • Such growth is made possible in part by the wide applicability that printed anatomical models can provide. Though pre-surgical planning models are receiving the greatest awareness due to their potential benefits to patients, there is also a significant opportunity for growth in printing of models to aid in the development of medical devices, as well as to produce training aids for surgeons-in-training
  • The personal surgery segment is expected to generate an aggregated total of revenue generation of nearly $10B from 2018 to 2027, primarily through the enabling of specialized medical 3D printing service providers focusing on outsourced production and clinical engineering services supported by 3D printing technology

Elizabeth Modic is the editor of Today's Medical Developments, Aerospace Manufacturing and Design, Today’s Motor Vehicles, and Quality, Measurement, and Inspection. She has written about design and manufacture for more than 20 years.