The characterization of PVA/PHY hydrogels for 3D printing fabrication of organ phantoms

E. S. Statnik, E. A. Sorokina, I. I. Larin, Kan Yu, A. I. Salimon, V. Yu Kalyaev, D. D. Zherebtsov, M. Yu Zadorozhnyy, A. M. Korsunsky

    Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


    Phantoms are widely used substitutes for various types of soft tissues with mechanically and anatomically matching properties. They can be used as advanced tools for training before the surgical manipulation on human organs such as the brain or liver as part of complex operation planning and preparation. We report 3D printing fabrication and characterization of hydrogel composites based on the combination of two biocompatible materials, namely, polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and phytagel (PHY). The hydrogels were used for the fabrication of brain phantoms in a multistage procedure based around 3D printing. The main goal of this study is to demonstrate the simple, low cost and relatively fast procedure for the creation of hydrogel organ phantoms of high anatomical and mechanical fidelity made from commonly available materials. To this end, three different types of samples were produced to illustrate the flexibility of hydrogel-based 3D printing approach in mimicking the mechanical properties of human organs: brain, lung, and liver soft tissues. The mechanical response was studied using Deben MicroTest 1 kN mechanical testing device and Q800 Dynamic Mechanical Analyser in compression mode. The results reveal close matching of the dynamic non-linear mechanical response of the phantoms to those of the corresponding natural soft tissues.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1874-1879
    Number of pages6
    JournalMaterials Today: Proceedings
    Publication statusPublished - 2020
    Event10th International Conference on Key Engineering Materials, ICKEM 2020 - Madrid, Spain
    Duration: 26 Mar 202029 Mar 2020


    • 3D printing
    • Composite materials
    • Hydrogels
    • Organ phantoms
    • PHY
    • PVA
    • Silicone


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