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J Biomech. 2011 Mar 15;44(5):897-903. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2010.11.036. Epub 2010 Dec 31.

Inlet boundary conditions for blood flow simulations in truncated arterial networks.

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Université catholique de Louvain, Institute of Mechanics, Materials and Civil Engineering, Av. G. Lemaitre, 4, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium.


In the context of patient-specific cardiovascular applications, hemodynamics models (going from 3D to 0D) are often limited to a part of the arterial tree. This restriction implies the set up of artificial interfaces with the remaining parts of the cardiovascular system. In particular, the inlet boundary condition is crucial: it supplies the impulsion to the system and receives the reflected backward waves created by the distal network. Some aspects of this boundary condition need to be properly defined such as the treatment of backward waves (reflected or absorbed) and the value of the imposed hemodynamic wave (total or forward component). Most authors prescribe as inlet boundary condition (BC) the total measured variable (pressure, velocity or flow rate) in a reflective way. We show that with this type of inlet boundary condition, the model does not produce physiological waveforms. We suggest instead to prescribe only the forward component of the prescribed variable in an absorbing way. In this way, the computed reflected waves superpose with the prescribed forward waves to produce the total wave at the inlet. In this work, different inlet boundary conditions are implemented and compared for a 1D blood flow model. We test our boundary conditions on a truncated arterial model presented in the literature as well as on a patient-specific lower-limb model of a femoral bypass. We show that with this new boundary condition, a much better fitting is observed on the shape and intensity of the simulated pressure and velocity waves.

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