3D printing of PEEK patient-specific implants

The Future of Customized Implants, in Three Dimensions

Recent advances in medical imaging, computer-assisted virtual surgical planning, and three-dimensional (3D) printing have the potential to revolutionize how surgeons use patient information for personalized treatment.

Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) and Polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) are high-performance thermoplastic polymers mainly used in reconstructive surgeries as a reliable alternative to other alloplastic materials for customized implants. With advancements in 3D printing, prospects for customized surgical implants have emerged, increasing attention for point-of-care manufacturing. By taking advantage of recent technological developments, 3D printing can manufacture customized implants on-demand, at lower cost, and within a much shorter time than conventional commercial orders of implants.

This research focus relies on material extrusion-based 3D printing of PEEK/PEKK customized solutions to facilitate reconstruction by perfect adaptation to the patient’s anatomy. Our research group is motivated to examine PEEK/PEKK implants and porous scaffolds produced with this novel manufacturing method. The ambitious challenge is to bridge the performance gap between 3D printed customized implants for reconstructive surgery applications and their clinical applicability at the point-of-care.



M. Sc. Candidate

Jokin Zubizarreta-Oteiza