Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Jonathan F. Wenk

Second Advisor

Dr. Keith Rouch


Myocardial infarction (i.e., a heart attack) is the most common heart disease in the United States. Mitral valve regurgitation, or the backflow of blood into the atrium from the left ventricle, is one of the complications associated with myocardial infarction. In this dissertation, a validated model of a sheep heart that has suffered myocardial infarction has been employed to study mitral valve regurgitation. The model was rebuilt with the knowledge of geometrical changes captured with MRI technique and is assigned with anisotropic, inhomogeneous, nearly incompressible and highly non-linear material properties. Patch augmentation was performed on its anterior leaflet, using a simplified approach, and its posterior leaflet, using a more realistic approach. In this finite element simulation, we virtually installed an elliptical patch within the central portion of the posterior leaflet. To the best of the author’s knowledge, this type of simulation has not been performed previously. In another simulation, the effect of patch within the anterior leaflet was simulated. The results from the two different surgical simulations show that patch implantation helps the free edges of the leaflets come close to one another, which leads to improved coaptation. Additionally, the changes in chordal force distributions are also reported. Finally, this study answers a few questions regarding mitral valve patch augmentation surgeries and emphasizes the importance of further investigations on the influence of patch positioning and material properties on key outcomes. The ultimate goal is to use the proposed techniques to assess human models that are patient-specific.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)