It’s a big mesh

In last weeks submitted piece you could read for our quest of a remodel able model of the human heart. There were three fields to look in to before making a decision on which path we wanted to choose. After a lot of research, struggling, downloading 100+ trails for programs and 400 liters of coffee the die is casted! Finally the next steps in the search for the ultimate didactical model for the LUMC are made.

The ideas for a NURBS model are cleared out of the way. Why, would you say. Simply because of the fact that a good NURBS model costs a lot of money and there is no certainty that the NURBS could be re modeled the way we needed. The idea for building a NURBS model ourselves was also cleared of the table because it would take too much time to repeat this step for every patient and with every heart.

Then the final big option was the one we started initially with: The scans from the heart. The problem with the scans is that they are grainy, have a lot of noise and you cannot keep track where the heart starts or ends. This thanks to the fact that the heart moves. It also is inside of an human body surrounded by organs and muscles which al have fairly the same density as the heart itself. So therefore only the Lumens (the cavities where the blood rushes through) are really visible in the scans. The challenge was set: How could the scans get better so we could work with a more detailed mesh?

The LUMC has an unique collection of un-operated hearts with an congenital heart disease. Al these hearts are deprived of blood and plasticized. So in deliberation with our client we asked if the plasticized hearts could be scanned, because of the lack of surrounding tissue and blood, maybe this would help bring the noise down and give us an more detailed scan. And so it was that we got a beautiful scan last week from the LUMC.

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