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A Poroelastic Model for Modelling Tissue Deformation and Ventilation in the Lung

Dr. David Kay ( Associate Prof. Computational Biology, Department of Computer Science, Oxford University )

Modelling tissue deformation or ventilation in the diseased lung separately does not give a good indication of how the integrated organ works, this is because both components are interdependent. We present a computational lung model that tightly couples a poroelastic model of lung tissue to an airway fluid network. The poroelastic model approximates the porous structure of lung tissue using a continuum model that allows us to naturally model changes in physiology by spatially varying material parameters. A stabilized finite element method is presented to discretize the poroelastic equations. To demonstrate the coupling between the poroelastic medium and the airway fluid network, numerical simulations on a realistic lung geometry are presented. We also investigate the effect of airway constriction on the ventilation, tissue stress and alveolar pressure distribution and highlight the interdependence of ventilation and deformation.

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