A mathematical model of blood flow in infants with hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) was improved by adding cerebral autoregulation. This is the process by which blood vessels constrict or dilate to keep blood flow steady in certain organs during pressure changes. The original lumped parameter model transformed the fluid flow into an electrical circuit. Its behavior is described using a system of thirty-three coupled differential equations that are solved numerically using a fourth-order Runge-Kutta method implemented in MATLAB. A literature review that includes a discussion of autoregulation mechanisms and approaches to modeling them is followed by a description of the model created for this paper. The model is based on the baroreceptor or neurogenic theory of autoregulation. According to this theory, nerves in certain places within the cardiovascular system detect changes in blood pressure. The brain then compensates by sending a signal to blood vessels to constrict or dilate. The model of the control system responded fairly well to a pressure drop with a steady state error of about two percent. Running the model with or without the control system activated had little effect on other parameters, notably cardiac output. A more complete model of blood flow control would include autonomic regulation. This would vary more parameters than local autoregulation, including heart rate and contractility. This is suggested as a topic of further research.
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Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (B.S.M.E.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Dissertations, Academic -- Engineering and Computer Science;Engineering and Computer Science -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Gentile, Russell, "Adding cerebral autoregulation to a lumped parameter model of blood flow" (2012). HIM 1990-2015. 1267.