Biomechanical Properties of Human Arteries
One of the major challenges of contemporary research in biomechanics is to assess the material properties of human arteries and studying them is essential to design prosthesis that resemble the original vessels. The major issue concerns the evaluation of the elastic properties of arteries in vivo due to the anisotropy of the material and to the inability to do it with a non-invasive and accurate method. Despite endovascular techniques have achieved widespread evolution, an adequate model for device development and physician training has not been available. Plastic models of the arterial tree and live animal models have significant limitations.
There is growing interest in the of cadaveric simulation courses for surgical trainees. This is being driven by the need to modernize and improve the efficiency of surgical training. Cadavers can be used for anatomical dissection, research on the vascular system, surgery training and other histologic examinations. In this study is evaluated the effectiveness of a new embalming method in preserving some properties of arteries for several years.
In this seminar the mechanical properties of popliteal arteries removed from fresh and embalmed bodies preserved using a perfusion system (PS) or a formaldehyde method (FM) are presented and discussed. Tensile tests were applied to each specimen and maximum stress and strain before failure were measured. Elastic modulus, E1 and E2, were assessed using two linear regression fits separated by the transition point.
Embalmed arteries by FM show a significantly larger stiffness than the fresh and embalmed by PS. The results suggest that the PS maintains the original properties of arteries while the FM increases the stiffness, proving that PS is more suitable to embalming bodies for surgical training.