- •A multi-scale model of vertebral arteries, basilar artery and circle of Willis was built.
- •Unbalanced vertebral arteries increase wall shear stress at certain side of basilar artery.
- •Missing of posterior communicating arteries markedly increases blood pressure in basilar artery.
Vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia is a rare cerebrovascular disease characterized by obvious extension, dilation and tortuosity of vertebrobasilar artery, and its pathophysiological mechanism is not clear. This study focused on local hemodynamic changes in basilar arteries with typical vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia, together with unbalanced vertebral arteries and abnormal structures of the circle of Willis, through multi-scale modeling.
Three-dimensional models of 3 types of vertebrobasilar arteries were constructed from magnetic resonance images. The first type has no vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia, the second type has vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia and balanced vertebral arteries, and the third type has vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia and unbalanced vertebral arteries. A lumped parameter model of the circle of Willis was established and coupled to these three-dimensional models.
The results showed that unbalanced bilateral vertebral arteries, especially single vertebral artery deletion mutation, might associate with higher wall shear stress on anterior wall of basilar artery in patients with vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia. And unbalanced bilateral vertebral arteries would increase the blood pressure in basilar artery. Meanwhile, missing communicating arteries in the circle of Willis, especially bilateral posterior communicating arteries absences, would significantly increase blood pressure in basilar artery. The unilateral absence of posterior communicating arteries would increase differences in blood flow between the left and right posterior cerebral arteries.
This study provided a multi-scale modeling method and some preliminary results for helping understand the role of hemodynamics in occurrence and development of vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia.
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Published online: December 06, 2022
Accepted: December 5, 2022
Received: August 24, 2021
© 2022 Published by Elsevier Ltd.