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J Biomech Eng. 2012 Jan;134(1):011006. doi: 10.1115/1.4005684.

Finite element aortic injury reconstruction of near side lateral impacts using real world crash data.

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Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA.


Traumatic rupture of the aorta (TRA) remains the second most common cause of death associated with motor vehicle crashes, only less prevalent than brain injury. On average, nearly 8000 people die annually in the United States due to blunt injury to the aorta. It is observed that over 80% of occupants who suffer an aortic injury die at the scene due to exsanguination into the chest cavity. In the current study, eight near side lateral impacts, in which TRA occurred, were reconstructed using a combination of real world crash data reported in the Crash Injury Research and Engineering Network (CIREN) database, finite element (FE) models of vehicles, and the Wayne State Human Body Model - II (WSHBM). For the eight CIREN cases reconstructed, the high strain regions in the aorta closely matched with the autopsy data provided. The peak average maximum principal strains in all of the eight CIREN cases were localized in the isthmus region of the aorta, distal to the left subclavian artery, and averaged at 22 ± 6.2% while the average maximum pressure in the aorta was found to be 117 ± 14.7 kPa.

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