Computer-aided position planning of miniplates to treat facial bone defects

Jan Egger, Jürgen Wallner, Markus Gall, Xiaojun Chen, Katja Schwenzer-Zimmerer, Knut Reinbacher, Dieter Schmalstieg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this contribution, a software system for computer-aided position planning of miniplates to treat facial bone defects is proposed. The intra-operatively used bone plates have to be passively adapted on the underlying bone contours for adequate bone fragment stabilization. However, this procedure can lead to frequent intra-operatively performed material readjustments especially in complex surgical cases. Our approach is able to fit a selection of common implant models on the surgeon's desired position in a 3D computer model. This happens with respect to the surrounding anatomical structures, always including the possibility of adjusting both the direction and the position of the used osteosynthesis material. By using the proposed software, surgeons are able to pre-plan the out coming implant in its form and morphology with the aid of a computer-visualized model within a few minutes. Further, the resulting model can be stored in STL file format, the commonly used format for 3D printing. Using this technology, surgeons are able to print the virtual generated implant, or create an individually designed bending tool. This method leads to adapted osteosynthesis materials according to the surrounding anatomy and requires further a minimum amount of money and time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e0182839
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bone Plates
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Jaw
  • Male
  • Maxillofacial Injuries
  • Software
  • Surgery, Computer-Assisted
  • Surgery, Oral
  • Journal Article


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