Annals of Biomedical Engineering

, Volume 45, Issue 6, pp 1434–1448 | Cite as

Computational Parametric Studies Investigating the Global Hemodynamic Effects of Applied Apical Torsion for Cardiac Assist

  • Elaine Soohoo
  • Lewis K. Waldman
  • Dennis R. Trumble


Healthy hearts have an inherent twisting motion that is caused by large changes in muscle fiber orientation across the myocardial wall and is believed to help lower wall stress and increase cardiac output. It was demonstrated that applied apical torsion (AAT) of the heart could potentially treat congestive heart failure (CHF) by improving hemodynamic function. We report the results of parametric computational experiments where the effects of using a torsional ventricular assist device (tVAD) to treat CHF were examined using a patient-specific bi-ventricular computational model. We examined the effects on global hemodynamics as the device coverage area (CA) and applied rotation angle (ARA) were varied to determine ideal tVAD design parameters. When compared to a baseline, pretreatment CHF model, increases in ARA resulted in moderate to substantial increases in ejection fraction (EF), peak systolic pressures (PSP) and stroke work (SW) with concomitant decreases in end-systolic volumes (ESV). Increases in device CA resulted in increased hemodynamic function. The simulation representing the most aggressive level of cardiac assist yielded significant increases in left ventricular EF and SW, 49 and 72% respectively. Results with this more realistic computational model reinforce previous studies that have demonstrated the potential of AAT for cardiac assist.


Congestive heart failure Ventricular assist device Computational modeling 



Applied apical torsion


Congestive heart failure


Coverage area


Applied rotation angle


Heart failure


Torsional ventricular assist device


Ejection fraction


Peak systolic pressures


Stroke work


End systolic volume


Cardiac output


Left ventricle


Right ventricle





This work is supported by the Biomechanics in Regenerative Medicine (BIRM) Training Fellowship (NIBIB 5T32EB003392-10), Innovation Works (University Innovation Grant 2012W.CZ01551E-1), the National Institutes of Health (NIH 1R21EB017807-01A1), and the Bradford and Diane Smith Fellowship Award (Carnegie Mellon University).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Biomedical Engineering Society 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Scott Hall 4N003Carnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Insilicomed, Inc.La JollaUSA
  3. 3.Scott Hall 4N115Carnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

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