The mask fitter, a simple method to improve medical face mask adaptation using a customized 3D-printed frame during COVID-19: a survey on users’ acceptability in clinical dentistry

Alessandro Vichi, Dario Balestra, Cecilia Goracci, David R. Radford, Chris Louca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

COVID-19 has deeply impacted clinical strategies in dentistry and the use of surgical masks and respirators has become critical. They should adapt to the person’s facial anatomy, but this is not always easy to achieve. Bellus3D Company proposed to apply their face scan software, used with selected smartphones and tablets, to design and 3D-print a bespoke “Mask Fitter” to improve the sealing of surgical masks and respirators. Twenty dental staff participants were face scanned and a Mask Fitter for FFP2 respirators was designed and 3D-printed. Participants were asked to wear their Mask Fitter over one week and then completed a survey. Questions were asked about wearing comfort, sealing confidence, glasses or loupes fogging, both with and without the Mask Fitter. Dental staff gave positive feedback, with levels of comfort during daily use reported as similar with and without the Mask Fitter; and a higher confidence in achieving a proper seal, ranging from a 10% confidence rating of a proper seal without the Mask Fitter to 75% with the Mask Fitter. Moreover, fogging problems decreased considerably. The tested Mask Fitter device could represent an easy and low-cost procedure to improve the facial adaptation of the FFP2 respirator.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8921
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Sciences
Volume12
Issue number17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sep 2022

Keywords

  • 3D-face-scanning
  • 3D-printing
  • surgical mask
  • FFP2 respirator
  • mask fitter

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