Computational modeling of hypertensive growth in the human carotid artery
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Arterial hypertension is a chronic medical condition associated with an elevated blood pressure. Chronic arterial hypertension initiates a series of events, which are known to collectively initiate arterial wall thickening. However, the correlation between macrostructural mechanical loading, microstructural cellular changes, and macrostructural adaptation remains unclear. Here, we present a microstructurally motivated computational model for chronic arterial hypertension through smooth muscle cell growth. To model growth, we adopt a classical concept based on the multiplicative decomposition of the deformation gradient into an elastic part and a growth part. Motivated by clinical observations, we assume that the driving force for growth is the stretch sensed by the smooth muscle cells. We embed our model into a finite element framework, where growth is stored locally as an internal variable. First, to demonstrate the features of our model, we investigate the effects of hypertensive growth in a real human carotid artery. Our results agree nicely with experimental data reported in the literature both qualitatively and quantitatively.
The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00466-013-0959-z
CitationSaez, P., Peña, E., Martínez, M., Kuhl, E. Computational modeling of hypertensive growth in the human carotid artery. "Computational mechanics", Juny 2014, vol. 53, núm. 6, p. 1183-1196.
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