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Development of 3D printed transdermal medical device for treatment of hand osteoarthritis

Bergthora Snorradóttir, Rakel Kristjansdóttir, Helgi Jónsson

Introduction: Treatment for hand osteoarthritis (OA) is generally limited to symptomatic short term pain treatment. However, recent discovery indicates that by enhancing availability of retinoic acid in the joints would be promising in treating hand OA. Personalized local treatment of 3D printed patch is an attractive option for environmentally friendly treatment of hand OA. 3D printing has been used in healthcare for printing medical device with promising results. Consequently, medical device patch for transdermal treatment for hand OA is an interesting option.

Methods: Prototypes were designed in Tinkercad software and uploaded to Voxelizer for printing adjustments. Zmorph VX 3D printer was used with a flexible filament to print patch prototypes and test subjects. Three prototypes were selected for further testing and the preferred prototype was selected.

Results: Different shapes where printed, only few who looked promising for testing. The final prototype carried up to 3g of lotion with limited leaking when tested. It also fitted better and covered considerably more of targeted area.

Conclusions: The final prototype is promising for further development of a patch for local transdermal treatment, it is capable to keep considerable amount of lotion at targeted area. By placing retinoic gel into the 3D printed patch, the product gives the opportunity to enhance the availability of retinoic acid in the joints and prevent unnecessary side effects that follow systematic treatment. 3D printing a reusable rather than single use patch using retinoic acid is environmentally friendly.


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