Biomechanical Investigation of Disturbed Hemodynamics-Induced Tissue Degeneration in Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms Using Computational and Experimental Techniques.
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Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is the dilatation of the aorta beyond 50% of the normal vessel diameter. It is reported that 4-8% of men and 0.5-1% of women above 50 years of age bear an AAA and it accounts for ~15,000 deaths per year in the United States alone. If left untreated, AAA might gradually expand until rupture; the most catastrophic complication of the aneurysmal disease that is accompanied by a striking overall mortality of 80%. The precise mechanisms leading to AAA rupture remains unclear. Therefore, characterization of disturbed hemodynamics within AAAs will help to understand the mechanobiological development of the condition which will contribute to novel therapies for the condition. Due to geometrical complexities, it is challenging to directly quantify disturbed flows for AAAs clinically. Two other approaches for this investigation are computational modeling and experimental flow measurement. In computational modeling, the problem is first defined mathematically, and the solution is approximated with numerical techniques to get characteristics of flow. In experimental flow measurement, once the setup providing physiological flow pattern in a phantom geometry is constructed, velocity measurement system such as particle image velocimetry (PIV) enables characterization of the flow. We witness increasing number of applications of these complimentary approaches for AAA investigations in recent years. In this paper, we outline the details of computational modeling procedures and experimental settings and summarize important findings from recent studies, which will help researchers for AAA investigations and rupture mechanics.
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