Impact of head rotation on the individualized common carotid flow and carotid bifurcation hemodynamics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper aims at evaluating the changes that head rotation poses on morphological and flow characteristics of the carotid bifurcation (CB) and on the distribution of parameters that are regarded as important in atherosclerosis development, such as relative particle residence time (RRT), normalized oscillatory shear index (nOSI), and helicity (HL). Using a subject-specific approach, six healthy volunteers were MR-scanned in two head postures: supine neutral and prone with rightward head rotation. Cross-sectional flow velocity distribution was obtained using phase-contrast MRI at the common carotid artery (CCA). Our results indicate that peak systolic flow rate is reduced at the prone position in most cases for both CCAs. Morphological MR images are used to segment and construct the CB models. Numerical simulations are performed and areas exposed to high helicity or unfavorable hemodynamics are calculated. Head rotation affects the instantaneous spatial extent of high helicity regions. Posture-related observed differences in the distribution of nOSI and RRT suggest that inlet flow waveform tends to moderate geometry-induced changes in the qualitative and quantitative distribution of atherosclerosis-susceptible wall regions. Overall, presented results indicate that an individualized approach is required to fully assess the postural role in atherosclerosis development and in complications arising in stenotic and stented vessels.


  • Nicolas Aristokleous
  • Ioannis Seimenis
  • Georgios C Georgiou
  • Yannis Papaharilaou
  • Brigitta C Brott
  • Andrew Nicolaides
  • Andreas S Anayiotos
External organisations
  • Cyprus University of Technology
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Medical Image Processing


  • Adult, Atherosclerosis, Carotid Artery Diseases, Carotid Artery, Common/anatomy & histology, Computer Simulation, Hemodynamics/physiology, Humans, Imaging, Three-Dimensional/methods, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Models, Cardiovascular, Posture/physiology, Young Adult
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)783-9
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014 May
Publication categoryResearch
Externally publishedYes