Effect of the mechanical prosthetic mono- and bileaflet heart valve orientation on the flow field inside the simulated ventricle
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Two groups of typical contemporary mechanical heart valves, the Advancing the Standard (ATS) and the Carbomedics (CM) valve (of bileaflet design) and the Bjork-Shiley (BS) mono and Bicer-Val (BV) valves (of tilting-disc design), were tested in the mitral position under the pulsatile-flow condition. This study extends a previous report studying the effect of orientation of the St. Jude Medical (SJM) valve, representing bilcaflet valve design, and the Meditronic-Hall (MH) valve, representing mono-leaflet valve design. The test program utilized a flow visualization technique to map the velocity field inside the simulated ventricle. The study was carried out using a sophisticated cardiac simulator in conjunction with a high-speed video system (200 frames·s−1). The continuous monitoring of velocity-vector time histories revealed useful details about the complex flow and helped establish the locations and times of the peak parameter values. Comparison of the velocity profiles at corresponding flow phases reveals the effects of the differences in valve design and orientation. Based on precise examination of the data, the following general conclusions can be made: pulsatile flow creates three distinct flow phases consisting of accelerating, peak, and decelerating flow; the bileaflet CM and ATS valves in the antianatomical orientation generally create a single, large circulatory flow; the ATS valve scems to offer smoother flow patterns, similar to the SJM valve; and the monoleaflet BV valve and the BS monostrut valve seem to affect the flow characteristics more dramatically, with the posterior orientation exhibiting simple and stable circulatory flow.
Key wordsFlow visualization Bio-fluid mechanics Medical equipment Prosthetic heart valve
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