A novel methodology for personalized simulations of ventricular hemodynamics from noninvasive imaging data

A. de Vecchi*, A. Gomez, K. Pushparajah, T. Schaeffter, J. M. Simpson, R. Razavi, G. P. Penney, N. P. Smith, D. A. Nordsletten

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Current state-of-the-art imaging techniques can provide quantitative information to characterize ventricular function within the limits of the spatiotemporal resolution achievable in a realistic acquisition time. These imaging data can be used to personalize computer models, which in turn can help treatment planning by quantifying biomarkers that cannot be directly imaged, such as flow energy, shear stress and pressure gradients. To date, computer models have typically relied on invasive pressure measurements to be made patient-specific. When these data are not available, the scope and validity of the models are limited. To address this problem, we propose a new methodology for modeling patient-specific hemodynamics based exclusively on noninvasive velocity and anatomical data from 3D+t echocardiography or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Numerical simulations of the cardiac cycle are driven by the image-derived velocities prescribed at the model boundaries using a penalty method that recovers a physical solution by minimizing the energy imparted to the system. This numerical approach circumvents the mathematical challenges due to the poor conditioning that arises from the imposition of boundary conditions on velocity only. We demonstrate that through this technique we are able to reconstruct given flow fields using Dirichlet only conditions. We also perform a sensitivity analysis to investigate the accuracy of this approach for different images with varying spatiotemporal resolution. Finally, we examine the influence of noise on the computed result, showing robustness to unbiased noise with an average error in the simulated velocity approximately 7% for a typical voxel size of 2 mm3 and temporal resolution of 30 ms. The methodology is eventually applied to a patient case to highlight the potential for a direct clinical translation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-31
Number of pages12
JournalComputerized Medical Imaging and Graphics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge funding from the British Heart Foundation ( NH/11/5/29058 ). We also acknowledge the support from the Wellcome Trust-EPSRC Centre of Excellence in Medical Engineering (WT 088641/Z/09/Z) and the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre at Guy’s and St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and KCL. The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR, or the DoH.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 The Authors.


  • 3D blood flow reconstruction
  • B-Mode and Color Doppler echocardiography
  • Cardiac hemodynamics
  • PC-MRI
  • Personalized computational modeling


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