Spectral Decomposition of the Flow and Characterization of the Sound Signals through Stenoses with Different Levels of Severity
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Computational Model
2.2. Physics and Flow Conditions
2.3. Proper Orthogonal Decomposition (POD) Analysis
2.4. Fast Fourier Transform (FFT)
- For the least severe cases, the flow solution analysis showed slight disturbances to the flow up to 50% severity. For higher severities, it was observed that the flow velocity increased significantly inside the stenosis, became unstable close to the stenosis wall, and caused significant pressure fluctuations at the plaque surface. It indicates the possibility of higher excitation of the vessel wall in the constricted flow area.
- For the most severe cases (70%, 87%, and 92%), the shear layers around the flow jet became unstable at about x = 1D, breaking into smaller eddies. The fluctuating zone was determined between 1D and 4D downstream of the stenosis, in which as the mean axial velocity decreased, the flow fluctuations increased with distance. This region contained the highest level of flow fluctuations and sound sources.
- While frequency content analysis of RMS of wall pressure fluctuations showed that the severity of 20% did not generate significant turbulent fluctuations compared to the healthy artery, the acoustic energy spectrum increased exponentially with severity levels at the point of maximum excitation at x = 2D for the most severe cases.
- Break frequencies, ranging from 40 to 230 Hz, associated with each specific severity level, were found in this study. An increase in break frequencies was also observed with increased levels of severity. These can suggest a non-invasive approach for predicting the severity of the stenosis.
- As the severity increased over 50%, peak frequencies with higher energies appeared in the acoustic spatial-frequency map of the post-stenotic region. This is another indicator of the progression of the stenosis. Furthermore, additional high-energy frequency ranges of approximately 400–600 Hz, 1000–1400 Hz, and 750–1000 Hz for 70%, 87%, and 92% severities, respectively, were observed, which can help us to estimate the level of severity at late stages.
- Visualization of acoustic pressures filtered at high frequencies of 1000–1400 Hz helped localize the source of the high-frequency fluctuations. As the severity increased, turbulent instabilities were initiated inside the stenosis forming relatively smaller eddies close to the wall and comparable eddies in the shear layers of the flow jet.
5. Future Works
- Sound analysis of flow-induced acoustics in patient-specific models derived from medical imaging, with more realistic flow properties, which may lead to specific alterations in the generated sounds compared to simplified models.
- Additional severities to derive a general correlation between the emerged signals and severity levels, which can assist to develop an algorithm for early detection of the stenosis.
- Expanding the current methodology to combine computational fluid dynamics, finite element analysis, and sound analysis techniques to conduct an in-depth investigation on the propagation of flow-induced sound waves through artery wall and the surrounding tissue.
- Combination of POD and frequency-based flow decomposition methods to study possible characteristic frequencies of flow structures for aortic aneurysm.
- Considering Pulsatile flow to account for pressure fluctuations, especially in the accelerating and decelerating phases.
- The proposed approach was performed on a few levels of severity. This needs to be tested on several cases, cross-validated by experimental sound analysis, and expanded by signal processing techniques.
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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Khalili, F.; Gamage, P.T.; Taebi, A.; Johnson, M.E.; Roberts, R.B.; Mitchell, J. Spectral Decomposition of the Flow and Characterization of the Sound Signals through Stenoses with Different Levels of Severity. Bioengineering 2021, 8, 41. https://doi.org/10.3390/bioengineering8030041
Khalili F, Gamage PT, Taebi A, Johnson ME, Roberts RB, Mitchell J. Spectral Decomposition of the Flow and Characterization of the Sound Signals through Stenoses with Different Levels of Severity. Bioengineering. 2021; 8(3):41. https://doi.org/10.3390/bioengineering8030041Chicago/Turabian Style
Khalili, Fardin, Peshala T. Gamage, Amirtahà Taebi, Mark E. Johnson, Randal B. Roberts, and John Mitchell. 2021. "Spectral Decomposition of the Flow and Characterization of the Sound Signals through Stenoses with Different Levels of Severity" Bioengineering 8, no. 3: 41. https://doi.org/10.3390/bioengineering8030041