Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2016

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Jean Hertzberg

Second Advisor

Brett Fenster

Third Advisor

Joyce Schroeder

Fourth Advisor

Jeffrey Knutsen

Abstract

Heart disease, the leading cause of death in the US, is a complex pathology which may manifest in several ways including morphological and hemodynamic changes in the heart and circulatory system. Recent advances in time resolved cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (4DMRI) have allowed for characterization of blood flow in the right ventricle (RV) and right atrium (RA), including calculation of vorticity and circulation, and qualitative visual assessment of coherent flow patterns. This thesis presents background on heart disease, specifically right ventricular diastolic dysfunction (RVDD), and 4DMRI tools and techniques used for quantitative and qualitative analysis of cardiac flows in the normal and disease states. Results of a preliminary study of right heart vorticity in subjects with RVDD are presented which inform the direction of later analysis. 4DMRI data is characterized to evaluate its suitability for quantitative and qualitative study of the RVDD pathology. Results of a 34 subject study or 20 RVDD patient and 14 normals are presented in which a significant difference is found in early diastolic right heart vorticity between the normal and pathologic group. A qualitative visual analysis is presented of differences and similarities in 3D flow structures between a single normal and RVDD subject at peak systole, peak early diastole, and late diastole in which several differences in 3D flow are observed. The thesis ends with observations regarding right heart three-dimensional flow characteristics of the RVDD pathology and the use of 4DMRI as a research tool for the study of right heart pathologies.

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