No specific benefit seen from patient-specific orbital implants for fracture repair
OCT 06, 2022
A systematic literature review focused on current evidence for patient-specific orbital implants (PSIs) for the purpose of orbital fracture repair.
Fifteen articles published between January 2020 and September 2021 were included, focusing on blowout, naso-orbito-ethmoid, and zygomaticomaxillary orbital fractures. Studies assessed postoperative diplopia, enophthalmos, orbital volume, and complication rates. The PSIs were created via manual molding on a 3D-printed orbital model or a template fabricated from a 3D printer, or directly from a 3D printer.
Given the wide range in reported findings in each study, no conclusion could be drawn regarding statistically significant differences between traditional implants and PSIs in terms of the main outcomes. Cost is a major factor, as PSIs ranged from a low of $70 to a high of $7718 USD, with an average of $2644 USD per implant.
Orbital surgeons understand the varying complexity of the included fracture types. Therefore, focusing on one type of fracture might have been a better option.
Orbital surgeons are encouraged to reserve PSIs for very complex cases or those cases involving patients with faces which have yet to reach full maturity of growth. Given that it takes approximately 5 days to produce a PSI after the design is confirmed, PSIs cannot be considered in urgent cases of orbital fracture repair, such as with tissue entrapment inducing an oculocardiac reflex or threatening muscle ischemia.