3D-printed beak saves ZooTampa's great hornbill resident from skin cancer

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One cancer patient – a bird living at ZooTampa – has a second chance at life thanks to a 3D printer.

"This tumor is typically found near the front of the casque in hornbills, but hers was in the back," said Dr. Kendra Baker, D.V.M. and associate veterinarian at ZooTampa.That's when the team made the call to print and design a new custom 3D casque for the great hornbill. Her prosthetic beak had to be lightweight, hard, and durable. Her tumor was removed in January.

"The prosthetic covers her sinuses, and Crescent immediately had full use of her beak," ZooTampa reported in a news release sent Monday.It's the first time this surgery has been performed on a hornbill in the U.S. and it's just the second procedure worldwide, according to zoo officials.

Source: Healthcare Press (healthcarepress.net)


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