Turbulence in blood damage modeling



To account for the impact of turbulence in blood damage modeling, a novel approach based on the generation of instantaneous flow fields from RANS simulations is proposed.


Turbulent flow in a bileaflet mechanical heart valve was simulated using RANS-based (SST k-ω) flow solver using FLUENT 14.5. The calculated Reynolds shear stress (RSS) field is transformed into a set of divergence-free random vector fields representing turbulent velocity fluctuations using procedural noise functions. To consider the random path of the blood cells, instantaneous flow fields were computed for each time step by summation of RSS-based divergence-free random and mean velocity fields. Using those instantaneous flow fields, instantaneous pathlines and corresponding point-wise instantaneous shear stresses were calculated. For a comparison, averaged pathlines based on mean velocity field and respective viscous shear stresses together with RSS values were calculated. Finally, the blood damage index (hemolysis) was integrated along the averaged and instantaneous pathlines using a power law approach and then compared.


Using RSS in blood damage modeling without a correction factor overestimates damaging stress and thus the blood damage (hemolysis). Blood damage histograms based on both presented approaches differ.


A novel approach to calculate blood damage without using RSS as a damaging parameter is established. The results of our numerical experiment support the hypothesis that the use of RSS as a damaging parameter should be avoided.

Int J Artif Organs 2016; 39(4): 160 - 165




Leonid Goubergrits, Jan Osman, Ricardo Mevert, Ulrich Kertzscher, Kai Pöthkow, Hans-Christian Hege

Article History


Financial support: No grants or funding have been received for this study.
Conflict of interest: None of the authors has financial interest related to this study to disclose.
Meeting presentation: Oral presentation on September 18, 2014 at the 41st European Society of Artificial Organs (ESAO) Congress held in Rome.

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  •  Biofluid Mechanics Laboratory, Charité Medical University of Berlin, Berlin - Germany
  •  Department of Congenital Heart Disease and Pediatric Cardiology, German Heart Institute of Berlin, Berlin - Germany
  •  Visualization and Data Analysis, Zuse Institute of Berlin, Berlin - Germany

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