Radiology – 3D Imaging Lab
The 3D Imaging Lab strives to deliver clinically relevant visualization and analysis of medical imaging data within the Penn State Health System. Using a variety of post-processing technologies, we create 3D renderings of CT and MR images to aid in diagnosis and pre-operative planning. In addition, we also generate 3D printed models and utilize virtual reality technology for educational and surgical planning purposes. Physicians may request our services when ordering an imaging study or at a later time.
Our highly-detailed 3D renderings allow for better evaluation of studies in various specialties, including:
3D reconstructions – This is the process of generating a computer model of the 3D appearance of an object from a set of CT or MR images. Studies created in 3D imaging software are easier and faster to read because they more closely resemble the real thing. They make it easier to observe blood flow, heart function, and liver and kidney volumes. They even allow layers of the image to be removed or the image to be rotated to more clearly see all sides of the body part that is the focus of the study. This technology replaces or reduces the need for more invasive diagnostic procedures and provides a means for non-invasive surgical planning.
3D printed models – In collaboration with our surgical departments, we create an electronic model from imaging data that can then be printed using a 3D printer to serve as a physical model for education and surgical planning. Explaining a complicated procedure using a precise model of the patient’s actual anatomy is extremely valuable both in reducing risks for errors and in ensuring patient understanding.
Virtual reality-based anatomy visualization – Using specialized software with a holographic imaging display and 3D glasses, we can view patient anatomy in virtual reality. The application of this technology allows a surgeon to practice and a student to learn on a precise representation of a specific patient and medical scenario potentially reducing errors and improving both patient and physician confidence, especially in less frequently performed procedures.