Did you know that hearing aids are one of the first products to use 3D printing for mass production? With 3D printing, customers can get truly bespoke hearing aids that are comfortable to wear. However, a major problem with hearing aids is that prolonged use can cause ear infections that can ultimately lead to more serious illnesses.
To reduce ear infections from prolonged use of ear hearing aids, researchers at University College London have found a way to incorporate antibiotics into the hearing aid itself that can be released into the ears over a period of two weeks. The antibiotics are mixed directly with the resins (the main material). These are then used to print the hearing aids. The release of antibiotics for two weeks stopped the formation of biofilm that causes bacterial growth in the ear. These hearing aids are also sturdy and non-toxic.
Further details will be published in the research report “Anti-Biofilm-Multi-Drug-Loaded-3D-Printed Hearing Aids” published in February 2021.
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