Company develops 3D printer to make fetus models which allow parents to see their child’s face
- A Japanese firm is using 3D technology to make fetus face models for $500
- The company can also make other scanned body parts and organs
Forget grainy black-and-white ultrasound pictures – a Japanese company is offering expectant parents models of their baby’s face while they’re still in the womb.
Medical engineering firm FASOTEC is using 3D printers to convert scans into cream-colored resin replicas of a fetus’ dial for about $500.
But it doesn’t stop there, with the Tokyo-based business also recreating other scanned body parts and organs so doctors can practice before operations.
As it is only once in a lifetime that you are pregnant with that child, we received requests for these kind of models from pregnant women who… do not want to forget the feelings and experience of that time,’ Fasotec spokesman Tomohiro Kinoshita told AFP.
The company uses a layering technique to build up the 3D form based on ultrasound scans.
The scans are usually taken around eight or nine months into the pregnancy.
The three-dimensional printers, which have been around for several decades, are like inkjet printers, depositing layers of material on top of each other.
New mother Kyoko Aizaka purchased a face model of her son Kyosuke when she was eight months pregnant.
‘When we did it I was eight months pregnant, so he already had a human shape and baby face,’ she told WJBF.com.
‘I wonder how I’d have felt if I’d seen him earlier in my pregnancy.’
FASOTEC used to produce 3.6 inch (9 centimeter) models of an entire fetus encased in a transparent block the shape of the mother’s uterus, but stopped doing it due to possible risks of MRI during pregnancy, according to WJBF.com.
The ‘Shape of an Angel’ models, which cost about $1164, also came with a miniature version that could be attached to mobile phone straps.
Now the company makes models of anything that has been scanned, including body parts and organs to enable doctors to practice before operations.