Holey Moley

Well, not exactly rocket science, but last weekend I admitted a patient who I found incidentally had critical aortic stenosis (a life threatening narrowing of the aortic valve; that’s not what they had come in for (their gallbladder) but I actually listened to her heart with my stethoscope, and heard the harsh murmur and got an echocardiogram.

I tried to explain how critically tight the valve was and that we would need to replace the valve (traditionally that required open heart surgery [where we “kill you” put you on bypass pump and then “unkill you”, but now we can do it via “TAVR” which is a cool origami like valve that gets deployed via a catheter and pops into shape while the patient is awake - day procedure). But the patient and family couldn’t understand what 0.3 square cm of area meant. So, I thought, hey, I have a laser. And so quickly made a CAD file (since OnShape has a scripting language) of every size from 03.0 down to 0.4 square cm (essentially a pasta sizer).


This totally cracked me up because you lead with that and then immediately go into heart /vascular that is orders of magnitude more complex.


Too funny and I actually understand! Great use of an alternate resource. It’s all about communication…

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I’m enjoying the medical term “unkill.”


Rocket science is easier… trust me :slight_smile:


Your medical projects are some of the most interesting ones on the forum. Your stakes are much higher than what I make, that’s for sure. Nicely done.


Like this kind of origami heart?

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Very interesting!! Did it work (that is did they understand the concept better?) :mask:

I was “lucky” for my bypass they used the DaVinci machine (robotic) so no “unkilling” required :grinning:

(Actually yesterday was my surgery anniversary :thinking:) Oh - what material is that? Just white acrylic?


Yep, :proofgrade: White medium acrylic at stock settings.

That is really cool.

I tell people that sometimes I work with a half a microliter. that boggles their minds. :slight_smile:


I definitely don’t miss lab work! It was always pretty amazing though that moving around so many tiny volumes of clear liquid actually resulted in useful stuff.


Wow … bet they were glad they came in for the gallbladder! There is nothing better than seeing something to understanding. Size is one of those things.

Man, you never cease to amaze me. And, with this story and project, I’ll be sure to eat right and exercise regularly.

My roommate works for the company that makes the DaVinci - when she was interviewing I was so excited cuz that machine is so frickin cool!

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A “pasta sizer” for who?!?
Would you like 1 piece of spaghetti - or are you gonna gorge on all 5?

Seriously cool story though. I hope it worked!

We have several daVinci robots. I’ve done a lot of work with them

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