Cavitation causes brain injury

Ji Lang, Rungun Nathan, Dong Zhou, Xuewei Zhang, Bo Li, Qianhong Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


In this study, an artificial transparent head surrogate with high-speed photography discovers the formation and collapse of cavitation bubbles near the contrecoup regions as the head is exposed to a sudden translational impact. The cavitation damages the brain surface and produces a shock wave through the brain matter. Based on a novel experimental design, this new finding uncovers the mystery of the motion and deformation of the soft brain matter, which is not visible otherwise. It suggests that current brain injury criteria may underestimate the risk of head collision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number031908
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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