Year of Publication


Document Type



Graduate School


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Charles F. Knapp


An adjustable systemic-pulmonary artery (SPA) shunt is being developed that consists of apolytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) graft with a screw plunger mechanism. This device would allowfull control of flow through SPA shunts used to augment pulmonary blood flow in neonates bornwith single ventricle physiology. The objective of this study is to evaluate the changes this mechanismhas on flow fields for a 4 mm and 5 mm adjustable SPA shunt. Two in vitro models wereexamined; an idealized model with an axisymmetric constriction and a model developed from 3-Dreconstruction of the actual shunt under asymmetric constriction. These models were used to measurethe instantaneous velocity and vorticity fields using Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) underboth steady and pulsatile flow conditions. Recirculation regions and maximum values of velocity,vorticity, and shear stress are compared between the 4 mm and 5 mm models. The results indicatethat for the idealized model of both shunts, separation regions are much smaller, persistingfor approximately 0-1.75 diameters downstream of the constriction, while for the realistic modelsseparation regions of 2.5 diameters downstream were observed. Additional models of a 4 mm and5 mm shunt were tested under pulsatile conditions matching Re of 1061 and 849 and a Womersleynumber of 4.09 and 5.12, respectively, as seen in vivo. The maximum shear rates observed in bothshunts are within an allowable range without inducing platelet aggregation or hemolysis. However,regions of reverse flow exist distal to the throat, leading to possible concerns of plaque formation.Further in vivo testing will be needed to address this concern. This work is part of an extensiveeffort in developing a completely implantable adjustable systemic-pulmonary artery shunt.