A cardiovascular simulator tailored for training and clinical uses

L. Fresiello*, G. Ferrari, A. Di Molfetta, K. Zieliński, A. Tzallas, S. Jacobs, M. Darowski, M. Kozarski, B. Meyns, N. S. Katertsidis, E. C. Karvounis, M. G. Tsipouras, M. G. Trivella

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)
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Objective: In the present work a cardiovascular simulator designed both for clinical and training use is presented. Method: The core of the simulator is a lumped parameter model of the cardiovascular system provided with several modules for the representation of baroreflex control, blood transfusion, ventricular assist device (VAD) therapy and drug infusion. For the training use, a Pre-Set Disease module permits to select one or more cardiovascular diseases with a different level of severity. For the clinical use a Self-Tuning module was implemented. In this case, the user can insert patient's specific data and the simulator will automatically tune its parameters to the desired hemodynamic condition.The simulator can be also interfaced with external systems such as the Specialist Decision Support System (SDSS) devoted to address the choice of the appropriate level of VAD support based on the clinical characteristics of each patient. Results: The Pre-Set Disease module permits to reproduce a wide range of pre-set cardiovascular diseases involving heart, systemic and pulmonary circulation. In addition, the user can test different therapies as drug infusion, VAD therapy and volume transfusion. The Self-Tuning module was tested on six different hemodynamic conditions, including a VAD patient condition. In all cases the simulator permitted to reproduce the desired hemodynamic condition with an error < 10%. Conclusions: The cardiovascular simulator could be of value in clinical arena. Clinicians and students can utilize the Pre-Set Diseases module for training and to get an overall knowledge of the pathophysiology of common cardiovascular diseases. The Self-Tuning module is prospected as a useful tool to visualize patient's status, test different therapies and get more information about specific hemodynamic conditions. In this sense, the simulator, in conjunction with SDSS, constitutes a support to clinical decision - making.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)100-112
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of biomedical informatics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiovascular simulator
  • Decision support system
  • Training tool
  • Ventricular assist device
  • n/a OA procedure


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