Patient-specific modeling of cardiovascular mechanics

Annu Rev Biomed Eng. 2009;11:109-34. doi: 10.1146/annurev.bioeng.10.061807.160521.


Advances in numerical methods and three-dimensional imaging techniques have enabled the quantification of cardiovascular mechanics in subject-specific anatomic and physiologic models. Patient-specific models are being used to guide cell culture and animal experiments and test hypotheses related to the role of biomechanical factors in vascular diseases. Furthermore, biomechanical models based on noninvasive medical imaging could provide invaluable data on the in vivo service environment where cardiovascular devices are employed and on the effect of the devices on physiologic function. Finally, patient-specific modeling has enabled an entirely new application of cardiovascular mechanics, namely predicting outcomes of alternate therapeutic interventions for individual patients. We review methods to create anatomic and physiologic models, obtain properties, assign boundary conditions, and solve the equations governing blood flow and vessel wall dynamics. Applications of patient-specific models of cardiovascular mechanics are presented, followed by a discussion of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Biomechanical Phenomena*
  • Blood Flow Velocity
  • Cardiovascular System*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Hemodynamics / physiology
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods
  • Models, Biological
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods