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Online ISSN 1827-1847
Karmonik C. 1, 2, Debus K. 3, Shah D. J. 2, Lumsden A. B. 2, Bismuth J. 2
1 Methodist Neurological Institute, The Methodist Hospital, Houston, TX, USA;
2 Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center, The Methodist Hospital, Houston, TX, USA;
3 CD-Adapco, Irvine, CA, USA
Advances in medical imaging now enable the visualization and quantification of blood velocities in a variety of vascular pathologies. While associated with additional imaging time prolonging the clinical examination, the additional information obtained might be of benefit to the surgeon when planning treatment. This may be particularly true in serious, life-threatening diseases, where strong deviations from the regular flow pattern occur. These kinds of conditions include DeBakey type III aortic dissection where large variations in geometry and flow physiology exist which make it difficult to obtain a thorough understanding of the altered flow conditions by generalization. An alternative to additional imaging for flow quantification is the calculation of the velocity field by computational simulations based on routinely acquired clinical images. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) has been successfully applied in this context and examples are provided in this review. In addition, computational simulations might be used to evaluate flow changes prior to the actual interventions by altering the original computational model using the concept of virtual surgery.