To investigate the effects of pulsatile and continuous pediatric ventricular assist (PVAD) flow and pediatric blood viscoelasticity on hemodynamics in a pediatric aortic graft model. Hemodynamic parameters of pulsatility, along with velocity and wall shear stress (WSS), are analyzed and compared between Newtonian and viscoelastic blood models at a range of physiological pediatric hematocrits using computational fluid dynamics. Both pulsatile and continuous PVAD flow lead to a decrease in pulsatility (surplus hemodynamic energy, ergs/cm3) compared to healthy aortic flow but with continuous PVAD pulsatility up to 2.4 times lower than pulsatile PVAD pulsatility at each aortic outlet. Significant differences are also seen between the two flow modes in velocity and WSS. The higher velocity jet during systole with pulsatile flow leads to higher WSSs at the anastomotic toe and at the aortic branch bifurcations. The lower velocity but continuous flow jet leads to a much different flow field and higher WSSs into diastole. Under a range of physiological pediatric hematocrit (20–60%), both velocity and WSS can vary significantly with the higher hematocrit blood model generally leading to higher peak WSSs but also lower WSSs in regions of flow separation. The large decrease in pulsatility seen from continuous PVAD flow could lead to complications in pediatric vascular development while the high WSSs during peak systole from pulsatile PVAD flow could lead to blood damage. Both flow modes lead to similar regions prone to intimal hyperplasia resulting from low time-averaged WSS and high oscillatory shear index.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine