- Dufeau, David and Whitman, Rachel
- 3D Visualization is a growing field in medicine. It is used for diagnosis, intervention design, and patient education. Medical students and physicians have little difficulty picturing a heart in their mind. Most physicians and medical students can envision an anatomically correct heart, and also congenital heart defects. Patients and their families, however, do not always have this extraordinary ability. Objective: It is this potential disadvantage that provides motivation to develop innovative 3D tools that can be used to educate patients in clinical and hospital settings. Design: The primary focus of this study is to recover 3D structures and images from CT Data. The data were acquired from a number of sources, including Cardiology Radiologists at St. Vincent Hospital Cardiovascular Imaging Department and the National Institutes of Health Cancer Imaging Archive. Setting: The study was performed in the Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine 3D Visualization Laboratory. Methods: The CT data sets were analyzed with the 3D analytical software FEI Amira, and relevant anatomical structures, landmarks, and anomalies were identified and discriminated. Results: The researchers present two 3D projects: one of an anatomically correct heart, and the other of a heart after corrective surgery for the Tetralogy of Fallot congenital anomalies. Conclusions: We find that by developing our skills in 3D Visualization, we can create more accurate, interactive, and detailed images of cardiac anatomy. Our 3D Visualizations show great potential in advancing patient education and better enable us to care for our patients, both in clinical and hospital settings.