The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and the American College of Radiology have set to work establishing a new medical 3D printing clinical data registry.
The registry will act as a resource, offering information on 3D printing at the point of clinical care to help providers learn about the clinical value of the practice, the different technologies necessary for generating physical models from medical images, and the complexity of the models.
"The registry is slated to be one of several successful ACR-based registries. Institutions will be provided the opportunity to participate in the registry, after which they will be provided credentials similar to other registries," Frank Rybicki, chair of the ACR Committee on Appropriateness Criteria and founding chair of the RSNA SIG, told HCB News. "There are no limitations on institutions who provide data; the goal is to have high quality data that drives value of the collective technologies. The registry is an academic program and is designed to gather data for publications to be submitted with future billing codes."
While the use of 3D printing has been proposed to address numerous clinical indications, it is this diversity that has made it difficult to pin down its clinical value for decision-making and an understanding of how to use the technology appropriately.
Recent efforts to change this include the release of four new Category III Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes for the creation of 3D anatomical models and anatomic guides. RSNA and ACR seek for the registry to provide data that can be used to meet these requirements, with the ACR’s National Radiology Data Registry (NRDR) system hosting it. NRDR is home to six registries compiled from more than 6,500 participant sites and over 150 million cumulative cases.
Specialists expected to benefit from the registry include, but are not limited to, oncologists, radiation therapy doctors, oncology surgeons, orthopedic surgeons, craniomaxillofacial surgeons, cardiovascular surgeons, interventional radiologists and cardiologists.
"The challenge for any registry is quality data and measurable outcomes. There is data, mostly anecdotal, that 3D printing enables procedures that would otherwise not be possible. There is also secondary evidence that 3D printing adds extraordinary value," said Rybicki, adding that, "the main tip for participants is commitment. Entering data into a registry takes time and effort. Care providers do it, but success will rely on communication of how and why the registry exists. With good communication, we can get the buy-in from 3D printing practices to seek and enter the data needed."
Information about the registry, including how to participate, will be posted to the NRDR website as it becomes available.
Support was provided by Dr. Jane Matsumoto, Mr. Andy Christensen, Dr. Kenneth Wang, Dr. Leonid Chepelev, Dr. Edward Quigley, Dr. Justin Ryan and Dr. Nicole Wake, as well as financially by industry partners Formlabs, HP, Materialise and Stratasys.
A joint ACR-RSNA committee will govern the registry, with a pilot intended for the fall of 2019.