Vascular Stenosis: An Introduction

Marc Thiriet 1, 2 Michel Delfour 3 André Garon 3
1 REO - Numerical simulation of biological flows
LJLL - Laboratoire Jacques-Louis Lions, Inria Paris-Rocquencourt, UPMC - Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Paris 6
Abstract : An arterial stenosis is a narrowing of the lumen that disturbs the local blood flow and precludes the adequate irrigation of perfused organs. A vascular stenosis can be extrinsic, which is caused by external compression (e.g., aneurysms and tumors), or intrinsic, currently related to atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is defined by an intramural retention of lipids coupled to inflammation and dyslipidemia. Atherosclerosis scatters throughout large and medium thick-walled systemic arteries, especially near and in branching regions. (Pulmonary arterial stenosis is a congenital defect.) Atherosclerosis is characterized by migration from the media, proliferation, and dedifferentiation of vascular smooth myocytes in the subendothelial layer, in addition to monocyte diapedesis and differentiation into macrophages. Both smooth myocytes and macrophages scavenge accumulated oxidized low-density lipoproteins (oxLDL) and transform into foam cells. Atherosclerosis produces symptoms when the arterial lumen is severely narrowed. Advanced atherosclerotic plaques can be destabilized, thereby being a source of clotting and subsequent emboli. Emboli block tissue perfusion in a smaller downstream artery, thereby causing ischemia and infarction. The treatment of stenotic arterial segments relies on surgical grafting or medical minimally invasive procedures such as stenting. However, both methods often lead to intimal hyperplasia resulting from uncontrolled proliferation of vascular smooth myocytes. Whereas atheroma evolves during a time magnitude order of 10 years, posttherapeutic intimal hyperplasia develops in a period of order 1 month. Successful stenting can be assumed as a procedure without strong endothelial injury. In other words, both delayed thrombosis and intimal hyperplasia result from stent deployment that more or less severely damages the vascular endothelium. To eliminate these complications, drug-eluting stents have been designed and fabricated. However, the antiproliferative drug not only blocks vascular smooth myocyte division but also precludes endothelium healing. In the absence of proper endothelial interface between blood and arterial wall, that is, when the local controller of blood coagulation and cell proliferation is missing, thrombosis and restenosis occur. Arterial stenoses have stimulated biomechanicians and applied mathematicians. They carried out flow visualization and pressure and velocity measurements in experimental models of stenoses with idealized, symmetrical or not, geometry. In parallel to technological improvements of medical imaging techniques, computational fluid dynamics, due to new numerical schemes and high-performance computing, enables to perform numerical tests on subject-specific compartments of the blood circulation, after 3D reconstruction, rather than focusing on more or less short arterial, branched or not, segments. In addition, the drug release from drug-eluting stents is investigated using mathematical models.
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Submitted on : Friday, March 6, 2015 - 11:21:44 AM
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Marc Thiriet, Michel Delfour, André Garon. Vascular Stenosis: An Introduction. Peter Lanzer. PanVascular Medicine, Springer, pp.781-868, 2015, 978-3-642-37077-9. ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-37078-6_32⟩. ⟨hal-01125625⟩

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