3D printing gets Duke back on all fours

Meet Duke, an Irish retriever who has had his life turned around thanks to the dedicated volunteers at Irish Retriever Rescue (IRR).

Duke was found abandoned with a complex deformity that effected his front right limb.

Duke presented to one of our Specialist orthopaedic clinicians, Kevin Parsons, to discuss potential treatment options. Working closely with CBM a bespoke prosthesis was produced for the unique deformity. Following a CT scan of the limb at Langford Vets, the medical engineers at CBM were able to capture 3D data specific to the complex geometry of Dukes deformity.

Following initial design sketches and CAD models created by the design team, CBM manufacture pitched in to produce a series of prototypes that were 3D printed in house, and could be tested on Duke over the following months.

The team approach from Kevin Parsons, the Small Animal Referral Hospital’s orthopaedic team and Duke’s carer, Phil Brown, to test the prototypes and provide feedback, combined with a fatigue analyses produced by CBM engineers was critical, leading to the final selection of the processes and materials.

The final prosthesis is an extremely tough Nylon 12 construction made using Selective Laser Sintered (SLS). It is completed with internal foamcushioning to reduce anypressure sores along with a vacuum cast rubber foot, improving impact resistance and adding tactile grip to varied ground surfaces.

The result, one very happy dog.

Duke is now using his prosthesis daily to explore on his four functioning limbs.

Phil Brown, Duke’s owner, said: “Duke is resting and walking on his new prosthesis which is incredible given that he has never used that leg before."

If you are a vet and feel you have a case that would benefit from a custom prosthetic please contact Langford Vets Small Animal Referral Hospital.