http://www.cincinnatichildr... The printing of 3D heart models is helping Cincinnati Children's cardiologists plan complex heart surgeries.31-year-old Damon Mallott was born with congenital heart defects. He had several major surgeries as a child. In 2014, Damon started experiencing heart rhythm abnormalities leading to blood clots developing in his lungs. Doctors with the Cincinnati Children's Heart Institute had to prepare for a rare and complex surgery. In partnership with the University of Cincinnati, they printed a 3D heart model provided from MRI and CT scans. The scale model showed the full scope of his cardiac anatomy in three dimensions allowing the surgical team to plan the complicated procedure by first performing surgery on the 3D model. "Planning made a huge difference in Damon's surgery," said Gruschen Veldtman, MD, Damon's cardiologist at Cincinnati Children's. Damon is now recovering from his surgery. "When you are doing something completely different or involving multiple services, the ability to use the model to practice or go through a series of events really helps in the operating room," said David Morales, MD, director of cardiothoracic surgery.