These images are from a recent study evaluating different models for a fully coupled solid/fluid mechanics analysis, also known as Fluid Structure Interaction (FSI). The level of detail available in these 4D reconstructions is exceptional! The fourth dimension is time and you can appreciate the amount and quality of data we have to work with from the video.
It’s remarkable how naturally the entire structure deforms during systole and recoils during diastole. Closer analysis of the motion of the perimeter of the valve reveals THREE cycles occurring each heart beat. Imagine the implications for establishing fatigue validation test parameters! We were curious and digitized the valve over several heart beat cycles and fit that data with adaptive models, similar to what we did in In vitro Strain Estimates of Medical Implants.
The picture above is a photograph of the valve alongside another image from 4D CT showing how well the implant is centered and providing natural outflow for this fortunate end user. The Carpentier-Edwards Perimount MAGNA Pericardial Aortic Bioprosthetic has a mathematically modeled bioengineered design and is intended to optimize implantability, hemodynamics and long-term durability. Unlike King Max’s noisy heart valve in Tom Robbin’s, Still Life with Woodpecker, this ingenious assemblage of bovine-pericardium tissue and cobalt-chromium stent frame makes no sound whatsoever and requires no anticoagulants.
A special thanks to Paul Bishop, manager of the Peripheral Vascular Core Lab at the Clevaland Clinic for the medical imaging data used in this project.