Comparison of In Vivo MRI Measurements with Numerical Predictions

P.L. Cheong, M. Bourne, T.M. Griffith, and X.Y. Xu (UK)


Computational fluid dynamics; magnetic resonance imaging; aorto-iliac bifurcation; flow pattern


Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is increasingly used to simulate arterial blood flow in large arteries because of its ability to derive velocities and wall shear stresses, which are important parameters in correlating local haemodynamics with atherogenesis. By using a combination of magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) and CFD, in principle, the precise flow patterns of individuals can be determined. In order to assess the accuracy and reliability of this approach, CFD predictions of flow in a human aorto-iliac bifurcation are compared with in vivo MR measured velocity data. A cross sectional plane for each vessel was chosen for comparison. Cross-sectional axial velocity profiles were compared at four time points during the cardiac cycle. Qualitative comparison of 3D axial velocity profiles revealed favourable agreement in the aorta with less than 10% difference in peak velocities. Satisfactory correspondence was also observed in the iliac arteries with both approaches showing the same skewing of velocity profiles. This study indicated the difference between in vitro and in vivo models, and thus the need for in vivo assessment to identify areas for further refinement.

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