£23,485 (2012) and £45,484 (2013) to the School of Computing Sciences, University of East Anglia.
Patients undergoing radiotherapy for the brain, head or neck sometimes need to wear a mask to keep their head still. This mask is moulded to the patient’s face, usually by taking a plaster cast or by moulding the plastic directly over the face. These masks are not guaranteed to fully immobilise the head, and some people can find the process upsetting.
The aim of this project is to develop a process for creating facial masks from CT scans that will already have been taken during the treatment process, using computer software and 3D printing technology. The initial grant paid for a short study to show that the process worked. The 2013 grant takes it further, improving the analysis of the CT scan and working to reduce costs and standardise fittings so that the moulds can be used with standard hospital equipment.