A 3-dimensional-printed left ventricle model incorporated into a mock circulatory loop to investigate hemodynamics inside a severely failing ventricle supported by a blood pump.


Liu GM(1), Hou JF(1), Wei RJ(2), Hu SS(1).
Author information:
(1)State Key Laboratory of Cardiovascular Disease, Fuwai Hospital, National Center for Cardiovascular Diseases, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China.
(2)MICROVEC INC, Beijing, China.


Intraventricular blood stasis is a design consideration for continuous flow blood pumps and might contribute to adverse events such as thrombosis and ventricular suction. However, the blood flow inside left ventricles (LVs) supported by blood pumps is still unclear. In vitro experiments were conducted to imitate how the hydraulic performance of an axial blood pump affects the intraventricular blood flow of a severe heart failure patient, such as velocity distribution, vorticity, and standard deviation of velocity. In this study, a silicone model of the LV was constructed from the computed tomography data of one patient with heart failure and was 3D printed. Then, intraventricular flow was visualized by particle image velocimetry equipment within a mock circulation loop. The results showed that the axial blood pump suctions most of the blood in a severely failing LV, there was an altered flow status within the LV, and blood stasis appeared in the central region of the LV. Some blood may be suctioned from the aortic valve to the blood pump because the patient's native heart was severely failing. Blood stasis at the LV center may cause thrombosis in the LV. The vortex flow near the inner wall of the LV can thoroughly wash the left ventricular cavity.