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3D printed fetus sculptures for mothers-to-be

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 - 01:49

Already popular in Japan and the United States, full size three-dimensional sculptures of unborn babies are proving a hit with expectant mothers in Estonia. Ben Gruber reports.

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Maarja is getting yet another ultrasound. She says pregnancy has felt like one long doctor's visit. (SOUNDBITE) (Estonian) EXPECTANT MOTHER, MAARJA, SAYING: "I didn't want to remember my pregnancy as just doctors' visits and tests and weighing and measuring. I wanted to turn it into something emotional to be remembered by my family and me." With that goal in mind she turned to technology and ordered up a 3D printed sculpture of her unborn baby. Already popular in Japan and the United States, 3D printed fetuses are now proving popular with expectant mothers in Estonia -- where Timmu Toke of Wolfprint 3D has set up shop. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CEO OF WOLFPRINT 3D, TIMMU TOKE, SAYING: "And what we're trying to do, we're trying to create a very positive emotion for them, as a memory of this magical time." Wolfprint use ultrasound scans to generate a replica of the baby and then 3D print it using plaster. Gynaecologist Marek Sois says that in some cases, these sculptures aren't just a new type of novelty. They could help surgeons plan out procedures for babies born with physical deformities. (SOUNDBITE) (Estonian) GYNAECOLOGIST, MAREK SOIS, SAYING: "It is possible to see face malformations, such as a cleft lip. It would be good to show colleagues that it is this kind of a defect or for surgeons when the child goes into surgery, the surgeon can look at the sculpture and see exactly what kind of a defect it is." Maarja says that if a 3D printed sculpture can give her so much joy - she can hardly imagine what it will be like to hold her real baby in the months to come.

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3D printed fetus sculptures for mothers-to-be

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 - 01:49