Finite element simulation of three dimensional residual stress in the aortic wall using an anisotropic tissue growth model.


Tissue Mechanics Laboratory, The Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30313-2412, United States. Electronic address: [Email]


Residual stress is believed to play a significant role in the in vivo stress state of the arterial wall, but quantifying residual stress in vivo is challenging. Based on the well-known assumptions that residual stress is a result of heterogeneous arterial growth and that it homogenizes the transmural distribution of arterial wall stress, we propose a new anisotropic tissue growth model for the aorta to recover the three-dimensional residual stress field in a bi-layer human aortic wall. Finite element simulations showed that the predicted residual stress magnitude with this method are within the documented range for human aorta. Particularly, the homeostatic inter-layer stress difference is identified as a key parameter to quantify the opening angle. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first finite element study employing anisotropic growth of aortic tissue in a bi-layer model to generate three-dimensional residual stress field, and the resultant opening angle can match with the experiments. A parametric study found that inter-layer stress homogeneity, arterial blood pressure, axial pre-stretch, and material stiffness strongly affect the residual stress field.


Anisotropic growth,Artery,Finite element method,Residual stress,