With this new 3D-printed exoskeletal cast idea, the incredibly fun and funky looking design provides a bit of leeway when it comes to scratching that itch halfway down your arm or balancing one leg outside of the shower so as not to get the cast wet. Victoria University of Wellington Architecture and Design school graduate Jake Evill recently developed this concept, called Cortex.
According to Evill, the exoskeletal cast provides a strong fractured-bone support system featuring lightweight protection that is ventilated, recyclable, and shower friendly. Evill says, "After many centuries of splints and cumbersome plaster casts that have been the itchy and smelly bane of millions of children, adults and the aged alike, the world over, we at last bring fracture support into the 21st century."
To produce the cast, the patient receives an X-Ray scan during which the break is identified. That specific area is then 3D scanned and the data is fed into the computer to generate a 3D-printed cast. The final product has one open side that is eventually snapped closed with strong fasteners. This modern creation is durable enough to protect the broken area during the healing process while it also potentially alleviates a large portion of the agony that goes along with a broken bone.