Reconstruction Strategy for Upper Extremity Defects After Bone Tumor Resection Based on 3D Customized Bone Cement Mold

Surg Innov. 2024 Jun;31(3):307-317. doi: 10.1177/15533506241244493. Epub 2024 Apr 12.


Background: Reconstructing bone defects in the upper extremities and restoring their functions poses a significant challenge. In this study, we describe a novel workflow for designing and manufacturing customized bone cement molds using 3D printing technology to reconstruct upper extremity defects after bone tumor resection.

Methods: Computer tomography data was acquired from the unaffected upper extremities to create a detachable mold, which can be customized to fit the joint precisely by shaping the bone cement accordingly. Fourteen patients who underwent reconstructive surgery following bone tumor resection in the proximal humerus (13 cases) or distal radius (1 case) between January 2014 and December 2022 were retrospectively evaluated. The medical records of this case series were reviewed for the demographic, radiological, and operative data. Metastasis, local recurrence, and complication were also reviewed. Additionally, Musculoskeletal Tumor Society Score (MSTS) and Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) were used to assess clinical outcomes.

Results: The mean follow-up period was 49.36 ± 15.18 months (range, 27-82 months). At the end of follow-up, there were no cases of metastasis or recurrence, and patients did not experience complications such as infection, dislocation, or implant loosening. Two cases complicated with subluxation (14.3%), and 1 case underwent revision surgery for prosthetic fracture (7.1%). The average MSTS score was 23.2 ± 1.76 (77.4%, range, 66.7%-86.7%), and the postoperative VAS score was 1.86 ± 1.03 (range, 1-4), which was significantly lower than that before surgery (average preoperative VAS score was 5.21 ± 2.00 (range, 2-8)) (P < .001).

Conclusion: Customized 3D molds can be utilized to shape bone cement prostheses, which may serve as a potential alternative for reconstructing the proximal humerus and distal radius following en bloc resection of bone tumors. This reconstruction strategy offers apparent advantages, including precise matching of articular surfaces and comparatively reduced costs.

Keywords: 3D printing; bone cement prosthesis; bone tumors; distal radius; proximal humerus.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Bone Cements* / therapeutic use
  • Bone Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Humerus / surgery
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Plastic Surgery Procedures* / methods
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional*
  • Radius / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Upper Extremity / surgery
  • Young Adult


  • Bone Cements