Facing COVID-19 pandemic: development of custom-made face mask with rapid prototyping system
Background: COVID-19 is a global pandemic. The virus spreads through respiratory droplets and close contact. Therefore, the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare professionals is essential. 3D printing technology could represent a valid option to ameliorate PPE shortages.
Methodology: Custom-made face mask were designed on the basis of facial scan and then 3D-printed. The whole protocol is executed with freeware software and only required a 3D printer. Six healthcare workers wore the device weekly thus expressing a judgment regarding quality of work, respiratory and skin comfort.
Results: The estimated total cost of a single mask is approximately 5 USD. The virtual design of a complete mask lasted 68 minutes on average. Most healthcare workers rated comfort as very good.
Conclusions: Based on the encouraging results obtained, we can confidently confirm that custom-made masks are novel and useful devices that may be used in the fight against COVID-19.
Copyright (c) 2021 Pasquale Piombino, Umberto Committeri, Giovanna Norino, Luigi Angelo Vaira, Stefania Troise, Fabio Maglitto, Domenico Mariniello, Giacomo De Riu, Luigi Califano
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