Continuous Flow Left Ventricular Assist Devices (CF-LVADs) generally operate at a constant speed whilst supporting a failing heart. However, constant speed CF-LVAD support may cause complications and increase the morbidity rates in the patients. Therefore, different varying speed operating modes for CF-LVADs have been proposed to generate more physiological blood flow, which may reduce complication rates under constant speed CF-LVAD support. The proposed varying speed CF-LVAD algorithms simulate time-dependant dynamics and three dimensional blood flow patterns in aorta under varying speed CF-LVAD support remain unclear. The aim of this study is to evaluate three dimensional blood flow patterns in a patient-specific aorta model under co-pulsating and counter-pulsating CF-LVAD support modes driven by speed and flow rate control algorithms using numerical simulations. Aortic blood flow was evaluated for 10,000 rpm constant speed CF-LVAD support generating 4.71 L/min mean flow rate over a cardiac cycle. Co-pulsating and counter-pulsating CF-LVAD speed control operated the pump at the same average speed over a cardiac cycle and co-pulsating and counter-pulsating CF-LVAD flow rate control generated the same average flow rate over cardiac cycle as in the constant speed pump support. Simulation results show that the utilised counter-pulsating pump flow rate control may decrease the haemolysis to a third compared to the most commonly employed constant speed pump operating mode. Moreover, CF-LVAD support utilising counter-pulsating pump flow rate control generated the most favourable hemodynamic characteristics, i.e. low Dean number, least wall shear stress and least haemolysis values among the investigated cases.
- Aortic blood flow
- Continuous flow left ventricular assist device