MAYFIELD VILLAGE– This is a day Manny Kothe of Lyndhurst will not soon forget. He received his first ever, custom fitted prosthetic hand. The hand was made by students in the CADD or Computer Aided Drafting and Design program at the Mayfield Innovation Center. They used a 3-D printer to make and assemble the hand. “It is a 3-D printed prosthetic hand. Just like any prosthetic hand, it is fit for the recipient and designed and modified for them,” CADD student Emily Pietrantone explained.
Manny's right hand never fully formed at birth. It's hoped the prosthetic hand, in the colors of his favorite team: Notre Dame, will be a real "game changer" for this active ten year old. "I might throw the ball, try to write with it. I will try to do many things I have not done with my right hand, like try to dribble with my right hand," Manny Kothe said after receiving his hand.
Pietrantone happened to meet Manny and his family at a store. She knew he would be a perfect candidate for the 3-D printed hand. He became the first person out of this program to get one. "We didn't know anything like this existed. Never would have thought that something like this would exist," Manny’s father Jim Kothe said.
The students had to make some adjustments to the hand. And, Manny knows he will have to keep practicing so he can gain better control and function. "He never had any real function in that hand. Sky's the limit really. He's made it ten years without it. It will be incredible to see how much he will be able to do with it," Kothe said of his son.
The students actually made two hands for Manny. Being such an active boy, a finger or an element on the hand could break. And, the students will continue to make adjustments as Manny gets older. “With the adaptations that my team and I made, his hand is working better than I could have expected on the first day," Pietrantone added.