Ph.D. Program in Bioengineering

Dottorato di Ricerca in Bioingegneria


Last Updated on September 2nd 2003                 Luca Antiga                              



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Luca Antiga

XVth cycle



Tutor: Ing. Andrea Remuzzi



Patient-specific modelling of blood flow in large arteries.

Cardiovascular diseases are the main cause of death in the Western world. Among them, atherosclerosis has the greatest mortality and morbidity, being responsible for the majority of cardiac and cerebral strokes. The evidence that atherosclerotic plaque formation takes place mainly near bifurcations has led to the hypothesis that irregular hemodynamic conditions may play a role in the initiation and progression of atherosclerotic lesions. In vivo and in vitro studies, both at the macroscopic and cellular level, confirmed these hypotheses, enforcing the importance of studying local hemodynamic conditions in the affected vessels. In the meantime, three-dimensional angiographic techniques, such as computerized axial tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance (MR), allow to obtain detailed anatomic information in less than a minute with low invasiveness. Thanks to this, it is therefore possible to apply computational fluid-dynamics (CFD) techniques, originally developed for idealized cases, to real patient-specific models. It is therefore important to solve the problem of accurately reconstructing geometric models from CT or MR angiography images in order to perform CFD computations. This work had the aim of creating tools for three-dimensional model reconstruction, geometric analysis, mesh generation and CFD calculation applied to arterial tracts. Computational geometry techniques have been developed and used to solve specific problems such as three-dimensional segmentation, model editing and measurement and adaptive-thickness boundary layer finite elements. Particular attention was payed to minimizing operator intervention and maximizing the reproducibility and accuracy of the results, so to introduce geometric and fluid-dynamics analysis into a clinical trial on a number of patients. 

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