Flow field study comparing design iterations of a 50 cc left ventricular assist device

Jason C. Nanna, Jennifer A. Wivholm, Steven Deutsch, Keefe B. Manning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The Randomized Evaluation of Mechanical Assistance for the Treatment of Congestive Heart Failure (REMATCH) study shows that implanted ventricular assist devices improve survival time and quality of life when used as a permanent therapy in patients who do not qualify for heart transplant. The success of the pulsatile 70 cc stroke volume left ventricular assist device (LVAD) developed by Penn State has led to the development of a 50 cc stroke volume pump for use in patients with smaller chest cavities to benefit a larger patient population. The initial 50 cc pump shows regions of in vivo thrombus formation, which correlate to low wall shear rates within the device. In an in vitro evaluation of three new designs (V-2, V-3, and V-4) of the 50 cc LVAD, identical except for the location and orientation of their outlet ports, particle image velocimetry (PIV) is used to capture planar flow field data within the pumps. V-2 has an outlet port that is located parallel to the inlet. In V-3, the outlet port is rotated away from the inlet port, with the intention of minimizing the amount of fluid turning needed to exit the device. With V-4 the outlet port is moved to the center of the pump to prolong the desirable rotational flow. PIV data were taken at six planar locations within the pump. Although the modifications to the outlet port locations serve their intended purpose, they also introduce unwanted changes in the flow. Poorer wall washing and weaker rotational flow are observed with V-3 and V-4. Although the differences between the devices are subtle, the device that has the most desirable flow characteristics is V-2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-357
Number of pages9
JournalASAIO Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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