Survival in congenital heart disease has steadily improved since 1938, when Dr. Robert Gross successfully ligated for the first time a patent ductus arteriosus in a 7-year-old child. To continue the gains made over the past 80 years, transformative changes with broad impact are needed in management of congenital heart disease. Three-dimensional printing is an emerging technology that is fundamentally affecting patient care, research, trainee education, and interactions among medical teams, patients, and caregivers. This paper first reviews key clinical cases where the technology has affected patient care. It then discusses 3-dimensional printing in trainee education. Thereafter, the role of this technology in communication with multidisciplinary teams, patients, and caregivers is described. Finally, the paper reviews translational technologies on the horizon that promise to take this nascent field even further.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)294-312
Number of pages19
JournalJACC: Basic to Translational Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2018


  • 3D printing
  • cardiac imaging
  • cardiothoracic surgery
  • congenital heart disease
  • simulation


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