A Feasibility Study On 3D Printed Biopsy Needles: Pronged Tips And INternal Features Affect On Tissue Yield

Primary Author: Anika VanDeen

Faculty Sponsor: Roland Chen


Primary College/Unit: Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture

Category: Engineering and Environmental Science

Campus: Pullman




Principal Topic

Cancer is an ever-prevalent disease accounting for a large portion of medical services. With an aging world population, it is imperative to have efficient and non-invasive diagnostics. Biopsy methods such as core needle biopsy (CNB) and fine needle aspiration (FNA) are some of the most common practices used to garner an accurate diagnosis.


This study explores the feasibility of using 3D printing to fabricate biopsy needles with advanced designs that cannot be manufactured using traditional methods. We focus on enhancing the needle tip geometry as well as the addition of an internal feature to help improve tissue yield amounts. Four needle designs were tested, two with a bevel shaped tip, and two with a five-pronged tip, both with and without the internal feature.



Average total yield for the beveled needle with no feature (n=10), was 3.217 mg (s=0.9104), and for the beveled needle with feature, five-pronged needle without feature, and the five-pronged needle with feature (n=22), measured 8.31 mg (s=3.07 mg), 16.16 mg (s=12.21), and 26.34 mg (s=12.94), respectively. There is a statistical difference in yield tissue amounts between the five-prong needle with and without feature (p=0.01). The pronged-tip design with the internal feature is shown to have a significant effect on tissue sampling efficiency. The 3D printed needles do create higher insertion force than that of the stainless-steel needles. This study demonstrates the feasibility of using 3D printing to fabricate biopsy needles with enhanced tissue sampling efficiency.