The technique of crossing the limbs of bifurcated modular stent grafts for endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) is often employed in the face of splayed aortic bifurcations to facilitate cannulation and prevent device kinking. However, little has been reported about the implications of cross-limb EVAR, especially in comparison to conventional EVAR. Previous computational fluid dynamics studies of conventional EVAR grafts have mostly utilized simplified planar stent graft geometries. We herein examined the differences between conventional and cross-limb EVAR by comparing their hemodynamic flow fields (i.e., in the “direct” and “cross” configurations, respectively). We also added a “planar” configuration, which is commonly found in the literature, to identify how well this configuration compares to out-of-plane stent graft configurations from a hemodynamic perspective. A representative patient’s cross-limb stent graft geometry was segmented using computed tomography imaging in Mimics software. The cross-limb graft geometry was used to build its direct and planar counterparts in SolidWorks. Physiologic velocity and mass flow boundary conditions and blood properties were implemented for steady-state and pulsatile transient simulations in ANSYS CFX. Displacement forces, wall shear stress (WSS), and oscillatory shear index (OSI) were all comparable between the direct and cross configurations, whereas the planar geometry yielded very different predictions of hemodynamics compared to the out-of-plane stent graft configurations, particularly for displacement forces. This single-patient study suggests that the short-term hemodynamics involved in crossing the limbs is as safe as conventional EVAR. Higher helicity and improved WSS distribution of the cross-limb configuration suggest improved flow-related thrombosis resistance in the short term. However, there may be long-term fatigue implications to stent graft use in the cross configuration when compared to the direct configuration.
Computational Fluid Dynamics Evaluation of the Cross-Limb Stent Graft Configuration for Endovascular Aneurysm Repair
Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering,
Contributed by the Bioengineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF BIOMECHANICAL ENGINEERING. Manuscript received March 14, 2012; final manuscript received October 12, 2012; accepted manuscript posted October 25, 2012; published online November 27, 2012. Assoc. Editor: Hai-Chao Han.
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Shek, T. L. T., Tse, L. W., Nabovati, A., and Amon, C. H. (November 27, 2012). "Computational Fluid Dynamics Evaluation of the Cross-Limb Stent Graft Configuration for Endovascular Aneurysm Repair." ASME. J Biomech Eng. December 2012; 134(12): 121002. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4007950
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