Computational Fluid Dynamics Study of Bifurcation Aneurysms Treated with Pipeline Embolization Device: Side Branch Diameter Study

J Med Biol Eng. 2015;35(3):293-304. doi: 10.1007/s40846-015-0046-3. Epub 2015 Jun 30.


An intracranial aneurysm, abnormal swelling of the cerebral artery, may lead to undesirable rates of mortality and morbidity upon rupture. Endovascular treatment involves the deployment of a flow-diverting stent that covers the aneurysm orifice, thereby reducing the blood flow into the aneurysm and mitigating the risk of rupture. In this study, computational fluid dynamics analysis is performed on a bifurcation model to investigate the change in hemodynamics with various side branch diameters. The condition after the deployment of a pipeline embolization device is also simulated. Hemodynamic factors such as flow velocity, pressure, and wall shear stress are studied. Aneurysms with a larger side branch vessel might have greater risk after treatment in terms of hemodynamics. Although a stent could lead to flow reduction entering the aneurysm, it would drastically alter the flow rate inside the side branch vessel. This may result in side-branch hypoperfusion subsequent to stenting. In addition, two patient-specific bifurcation aneurysms are tested, and the results show good agreement with the idealized models. Furthermore, the peripheral resistance of downstream vessels is investigated by varying the outlet pressure conditions. This quantitative analysis can assist in treatment planning and therapeutic decision-making.

Keywords: Computational fluid dynamics (CFD); Endovascular treatment; Intracranial aneurysm.