Nele Famaey

Nele Famaey
KU Leuven | ku leuven · Department of Mechanical Engineering

PhD, MSc

About

97
Publications
9,196
Reads
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934
Citations
Additional affiliations
November 2010 - May 2011
Stanford University
Position
  • Visiting Fulbright Scholar
August 2006 - present
KU Leuven
Position
  • Soft tissue biomechanics
Description
  • - biological soft tissue modelling and characterization - finite element modelling - tissue overload prevention in minimally invasive (robotic) surgery

Publications

Publications (97)
Article
Full-text available
Secondary mitral regurgitation occurs when a left ventricular problem causes leaking of the mitral valve. The altered left ventricular geometry changes the orientation of the subvalvular apparatus, thereby affecting the mechanical stress on the mitral valve. This in turn leads to active remodeling of the mitral valve, in order to compensate for the...
Article
Collagen fibers and their orientation greatly influence an artery's mechanical characteristics, determining its transversely isotropic behavior. It is generally assumed that these fibers are deposited along a preferred direction to maximize the load bearing capacity of the vessel wall. This implies a large spatial variation in collagen orientation...
Article
Full-text available
The Ross, or pulmonary autograft, procedure presents a fascinating mechanobiological scenario. Due to the common embryological origin of the aortic and pulmonary root, the conotruncus, several authors have hypothesized that a pulmonary autograft has the innate potential to remodel into an aortic phenotype once exposed to systemic conditions. Most o...
Article
Computational investigations of how soft tissues grow and remodel are gaining more and more interest and several growth and remodeling theories have been developed. Roughly, two main groups of theories for soft tissues can be distinguished: kinematic-based growth theory and theories based on constrained mixture theory. Our goal was to apply these t...
Article
Full-text available
Controlled cortical impact (CCI) on porcine brain is often utilized to investigate the pathophysiology and functional outcome of focal traumatic brain injury (TBI), such as cerebral contusion (CC). Using a finite element (FE) model of the porcine brain, the localized brain strain and strain rate resulting from CCI can be computed and compared to th...
Article
Objective Cerebral contusions (CC) represent a frequent lesion in traumatic brain injury, with potential morbidity from mass effect and tissue loss. Better understanding of the mechanical etiology will help to improve head protection. The goal of this study is to investigate the threshold for mechanical impact parameters to induce CC in an in vivo...
Article
Osteoarthritis is a whole joint disease with cartilage degeneration being an important manifestation. Tissue engineering treatment is a solution for repairing cartilage defects by implantation of chondrocyte-laden hydrogel constructs within the defect. In silico models have recently been introduced to simulate and optimize the design of these const...
Article
Full-text available
The excellent clinical outcome of the Ross procedure and previous histological studies suggest that the pulmonary autograft has the potential to offer young patients a permanent solution to aortic valve disease. We aim to study the early mechanobiological adaptation of the autograft. To this end, we have reviewed relevant existing animal models, in...
Article
Full-text available
Injurious mechanical loading of articular cartilage and associated lesions compromise the mechanical and structural integrity of joints and contribute to the onset and progression of cartilage degeneration leading to osteoarthritis (OA). Despite extensive in vitro and in vivo research, it remains unclear how the changes in cartilage composition and...
Article
Restenosis is one of the main adverse effects of the treatment of atherosclerosis through balloon angioplasty or stenting. During the intervention, the arterial wall is overstretched, causing a cascade of cellular events and subsequent neointima formation. This mechanical stimulus and its mechanobiological effects can be reproduced in biomechanical...
Article
Full-text available
The excellent clinical outcome of the Ross procedure and previous histological studies suggest that the pulmonary autograft has the potential to offer young patients a permanent solution to aortic valve disease. We aim to study the early mechanobiological adaptation of the autograft. To this end, we have reviewed relevant existing animal models, in...
Article
Full-text available
The excellent clinical outcome of the Ross procedure and previous histological studies suggest that the pulmonary autograft has the potential to offer young patients a permanent solution to aortic valve disease. We aim to study the early mechanobiological adaptation of the autograft. To this end, we have reviewed relevant existing animal models, in...
Article
Full-text available
Vascular clamping often causes injury to arterial tissue, leading to a cascade of cellular and extracellular events. A reliable in silico prediction of these processes following vascular injury could help us to increase our understanding thereof, and eventually optimize surgical techniques or drug delivery to minimize the amount of long-term damage...
Article
Full-text available
Bridging veins (BVs) drain the blood from the cerebral cortex into dural sinuses. BVs have one end attached to the brain and the other to the superior sagittal sinus (SSS), which is attached to the skull. Relative movement between these two structures can cause BV to rupture producing acute subdural haematoma, a head injury with a mortality rate be...
Article
Full-text available
The regional dynamic mechanical properties of mouse, rat, pig, and human brain tissue were compared directly in this first-of-its-kind study. Our results suggest the use of pig or mouse brain tissue as suitable surrogates to characterise human brain tissue. The importance of this work is highlighted by the extensive use of constitutive data from an...
Presentation
Full-text available
Biomechanical evaluation of personalized external aortic root support (PEARS): case-study.
Article
Full-text available
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an important cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide. Finite element models of the human head are used widely to simulate TBI loading scenarios, to improve the understanding of the mechanical pathogenesis of head trauma. The reliability of such computational models depends strongly on the accuracy of the mechanica...
Article
Finite element modeling is often used in biomechanical engineering to evaluate medical devices, treatments and diagnostic tools. Using an adequate material model that describes the mechanical behavior of biological tissues is essential for a reliable outcome of the simulation. Pre-programmed material models for biological tissues are available in m...
Article
Full-text available
Cardiac surgeries may expose pulmonary arterial tissue to systemic conditions, potentially resulting in failure of that tissue. Our goal was to quantitatively assess pulmonary artery adaptation due to changes in mechanical environment. In 17 sheep, we placed a pulmonary autograft in aortic position, with or without macroporous mesh reinforcement. I...
Presentation
Mechano-biological adaptation of the pulmonary artery exposed to systemic conditions.
Article
Reliable computer models are needed for a better understanding of the physical mechanisms of skull fracture in accidental hits, falls, bicycle - motor vehicle & car accidents and assaults. The performance and biofidelity of these models depend on the correct anatomical representation and material description of these structures. In literature, a st...
Article
Full-text available
To understand traumas to the nervous system, the relation between mechanical load and functional impairment needs to be explained. Cellular-level computational models are being used to capture the mechanism behind mechanically-induced injuries and possibly predict these events. However, uncertainties in the material properties used in computational...
Article
Acute subdural hematoma (ASDH) is one of the most frequent traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) with high mortality rate. Bridging vein (BV) ruptures is a major cause of ASDH. The KTH finite element head model includes bridging veins to predict acute subdural hematoma due to BV rupture. In this model, BVs were positioned according to Oka et al. (1985)....
Article
As degenerative joint diseases such as osteoarthritis (OA) progress, the matrix constituents, particularly collagen fibrils and proteoglycans, become damaged, therefore deteriorating the tissue’s mechanical properties. This study aims to further the understanding of the effect of degradation of the different cartilage constituents on the mechanical...
Article
The constrained mixture theory is an elegant way to incorporate the phenomenon of residual stresses in patient-specific finite element models of arteries. This theory assumes an in vivo reference geometry, obtained from medical imaging, and constituent-specific deposition stretches in the assumed reference state. It allows to model residual stresse...
Article
A correct estimation of the material parameters from a planar biaxial test is crucial since they will affect the outcome of the finite element model in which they are used. In a virtual planar biaxial experiment, a difference can be noticed in the stress calculated from the force measured experimentally at the rakes and the actual stress at the cen...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives The current study quantified the influence of cartilage defect location on the tibiofemoral load distribution during gait. Furthermore, changes in local mechanical stiffness representative for matrix damage or bone ingrowth were investigated. This may provide insights in the mechanical factors contributing to cartilage degeneration in th...
Data
Effect of cartilage defect location and stiffness on knee kinematics. (DOCX)
Data
The correlation coefficients between the reference and defect kinematics throughout the stance phase. (XLSX)
Data
Raw data compartimental load distribution and compressive strains. Supporting data Fig 3. (XLSX)
Data
Effect of cartilage defect location and stiffness on resultant compartmental contact force. Average tibiofemoral contact force for the different cartilage defect locations (Fig 1) throughout the stance phase of gait in the medial and lateral compartment of the tibiofemoral joint. The resultant contact force was scaled to body weight (BW). Bold labe...
Data
The root mean squared difference between the reference and defect kinematics throughout the stance phase. (XLSX)
Data
Raw data load distribution of defect and surrounding tissue throughout the stance phase of gait. Supporting data Fig 6. Average contact area [mm2]; Contact pressure [MPa]; Force [BW]; Strain [%]. (XLSX)
Article
Full-text available
Objective: This study aims to characterize the deformations in articular cartilage under compressive loading and link these to changes in the extracellular matrix constituents described by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) relaxation times in an experimental model mimicking in vivo cartilage-on-cartilage contact. Design: Quantitative MRI images, T1,...
Article
Finite element models of biomedical applications increasingly use anisotropic hyperelastic material formulations. Appropriate material parameters are essential for a reliable outcome of these simulations, which is why planar biaxial testing of soft biological tissues is gaining importance. However, much is still to be learned regarding the ideal me...
Article
Full-text available
The Ross procedure is a surgical procedure where a diseased aortic valve is replaced by the person's own pulmonary valve. The proximal segment of the pulmonary artery is thereby placed in aortic position and therefore suddenly exposed to a sevenfold increase in blood pressure. Excessive dilatation of this pulmonary autograft is a common complicatio...
Article
Objectives: The Ross procedure involves replacing a patient's diseased aortic valve with their own pulmonary valve. The most common failure mode is dilatation of the autograft. Various strategies to reinforce the autograft have been proposed. Personalized external aortic root support has been shown to be effective in stabilizing the aortic root in...
Article
Patient-specific biomechanical modelling can improve preoperative surgical planning. This requires patient-specific geometry as well as patient-specific material properties as input. The latter are, however, still quite challenging to estimate in vivo. This study focuses on the estimation of the mechanical properties of the arterial wall. Firstly,...
Article
Finite element (FE) simulations are increasingly valuable in assessing and improving the performance of biomedical devices and procedures. Due to high computational demands such simulations may become difficult or even infeasible, especially when considering nearly incompressible and anisotropic material models prevalent in analyses of soft tissues...
Article
A commonly heard concern in the Ross procedure, where a diseased aortic valve is replaced by the patient's own pulmonary valve, is the possibility of pulmonary autograft dilatation. We performed a biomechanical investigation of the use of a personalized external aortic root support or exostent as a possibility for supporting the autograft. In ten s...
Article
Wall stress estimation through biomechanical simulations represents a promising tool to support aneurysm risk stratification and has the potential to provide a more individual risk assessment. Accurate computation of the stress field necessitates the use of robust and biofidelic models based on patient-specific information. A multidisciplinary appr...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: Wrapping with various materials was an early treatment for aortic aneurysms. Wrapping with low-porosity vascular grafts has been associated with graft migration and vascular erosion. An alternative is to use a macroporous mesh (MPM) made of the same polymer (polyethylene terephalate). We compared the histological outcome 1 year after w...
Article
Objective: Vaginal childbirth is believed to be a significant risk factor for the development of pelvic floor dysfunction later in life. Previous studies have explored the use of medical imaging and simulations of childbirth to determine the stretch in the levator ani muscle. Bamberg et al, 2012, have recorded MR images of a live childbirth of a 2...
Article
Full-text available
Ascending thoracic aortic aneurysms (ATAAs) are a silent disease, ultimately leading to dissection or rupture of the arterial wall. There is a growing consensus that diameter information is insufficient to assess rupture risk, whereas wall stress and strength provide a more reliable estimate. The latter parameters cannot be measured directly and mu...
Article
Accurate estimation of peak wall stress (PWS) is the crux of biomechanically motivated rupture risk assessment for abdominal aortic aneurysms aimed to improve clinical outcomes. Such assessments often use the finite element (FE) method to obtain PWS, albeit at a high computational cost, motivating simplifications in material or element formulations...
Article
Acute subdural hematoma (ASDH) is a type of intracranial haemorrhage following head impact, with high mortality rates. Bridging vein (BV) rupture is a major cause of ASDH, which is why a biofidelic representation of BVs in finite element (FE) head models is essential for the successful prediction of ASDH. We investigated the mechanical behavior of...
Presentation
External aortic root support with macroporous mesh compared with low-porosity vascular graft material: a histological study in sheep.
Article
Cardiovascular surgeons increasingly resort to catheter-based diagnostic and therapeutic interventions because of their limited invasiveness. Although, these approaches allow treatment of patients considered unfit for conventional open surgery, exposure to radiation and high procedural complexity could lead to complications. These factors motivated...
Article
Using realistic benchtop models in early stages of device development can reduce time and efforts necessary to move the device to further testing. In this study, we propose several patient specific vascular benchtop models for the development and validation of a robotic catheter for transcatheter aortic valve implantation. The design and manufactur...
Article
Advances in miniaturized surgical instrumentation are key to less demanding and safer medical interventions. In cardiovascular procedures interventionalists turn towards catheter-based interventions, treating patients considered unfit for more invasive approaches. A positive outcome is not guaranteed. The risk for calcium dislodgement, tissue damag...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Lack of intra-operative haptic information during robotic surgery increases the risk for unintended tissue overload and damage. Knowledge about the acute and chronic fundamental relationship between force load and induced damage in healthy and diseased arteries is crucial to enable intra-operative haptic feedback or shared autonomy and...
Article
Leakage of blood alongside the implant is a relatively frequent and life-limiting complication after transcatheter aortic valve implantation. The aim of this study is to develop and validate a workflow to simulate the implantation prior to the intervention. Based on the simulation outcome, the amount of leakage is estimated in order to evaluate the...
Article
Mechanical characterization of soft biological tissue is becoming more and more prevalent. Despite the growing use of planar biaxial testing for soft tissue characterization, testing conditions and subsequent data analysis have not been standardized and vary widely. This also influences the quality of the result of the parameter fitting. Moreover,...
Chapter
We present a study of accuracy and execution speed using a novel implementation of a nonlinear anisotropic fiber-reinforced material model within a Total Lagrangian Explicit Dynamic (TLED) finite element (FE) framework, developed for execution on Graphics Processing Units. Full integration and selective-reduced integration have been developed for t...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Thoracic aortic rupture and aortopulmonary fistulation are rare conditions in horses. It mainly affects Friesian horses. Intrinsic differences in biomechanical properties of the aortic wall might predispose this breed. The biomechanical and biochemical properties of the thoracic aorta were characterized in warmblood horses, unaffected...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: To compensate for the lack of haptic feedback by surgical robots, limitation of exerted forces could be implemented. The limits should be based on the observed relationship between tissue load and induced damage. This study examines whether age-related changes influence this relationship. Methods: Descending thoracic aortas of male C57B...
Article
As the presence of finite element implementations on General Purpose Graphics Processing Units (GPGPUs) is the literature increases, detailed and in-breadth testing of the hardware is somewhat lacking. We present an implementation and detailed analysis of an FE algorithm designed for real-time solution, particularly aimed at elasticity problems app...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to validate carotid artery strain assessment in-vivo using ultrasound speckle tracking. The left carotid artery of five sheep was exposed and sonomicrometry crystals were sutured onto the artery wall to obtain reference strain. Ultrasound imaging was performed at baseline and stress, followed by strain estimation using an...