Abstract

This study explores the optimal left ventricular assist device (LVAD) cannula outflow configuration in a patient-specific replica of the aorta. The volumetric velocity field is measured using phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging (PC-MRI) under a physiologically relevant steady flow. The effect of the LVAD outflow graft insertion site and anastomosis angle on the transport of embolic particles to cranial vessels is studied by solving the particle equation of motion for spheres in the range of 0.1–1.0 mm using the measured three-dimensional (3D) velocity field. Results show that for a given aorta anatomy, it is possible to design the cannula graft location and terminal curvature so that the probability of embolic transport to the cranial vessels is significantly minimized. This is particularly important since the complex flow pattern in each cannula case affects the embolic trajectories differently, and hence the common assumption that particles distribute by the volumetric flow division does not hold.

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