[The chondrocranium of an 18 mm human embryo. A 3-dimensional computer-assisted reconstruction].Rev Stomatol Chir Maxillofac. 1999 Apr; 100(1):6-12.RS
Three-dimensional reconstruction of histologic structures is still a real challenge. This is the reason why very few specimens are published, especially for the head.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
The chondrocranium of an 18-mm human embryo was reconstructed from serial histologic sections. The three-dimensional reconstruction was based on a software used in geology and adapted to medical applications. This software was able to smooth the reconstructed model, i.e. to correct the distortions due to the histologic preparation.
The chondrocranium model is presented. To facilitate spatial orientation, we added the reconstruction of Merkel cartilage, of Reichert cartilage, of the vertebrae, and of the cerebrum. The different portions of the chondrocranium are described.
The three-dimensional result is described and advantageously compared to the rare wax models available. The morphological differences are detailed.
This technique of three-dimensional reconstruction with its smoothing procedure is a very well adapted method for reconstruction of histologic structures. The results presented confirm the educational value of this tool, which is otherwise a powerful instrument of morphogenic study.