Hemodynamics in transposition of the great arteries with comparison to ventricular septal defect

Cheng Tu, Charles S. Peskin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper uses a mathematical model of the circulations to study the hemodynamics of transposition of the great arteries (TGA) with comparison to ventricular septal defect (VSD). Computer experiments are conducted to determine the influence of the defect conductance and the pulmonary vascular conductance on the pulsatile pressures, flows, and oxygen concentrations of the circulation. In particular, the model is used to determine the waveform of the (possibly bidirectional) shunt through the ventricular and atrial septal defects. The results of the computer experiments consist of two parts. The first set of experiments is devoted to the comparison of VSD and TGA with a ventricular septal defect. The results are theoretical in the sense that most parameters have been fixed at the same levels. In each case TGA is represented by changing the connection of the chambers and reversing the compliance of the two ventricles. In the second set of experiments we attempt to simulate conditions clinically observed in a variety of cases of TGA. In each case we use clinical observations to infer parameters as the input to the model. We find that the model (with appropriate choice of parameters) generally exhibits blood pressure, blood flows and oxygen concentrations similar to the clinical observations. As a byproduct of these computer experiments we predict the effects of changing the pulmonary conductance. The comparison between TGA and VSD shows that as the defect conductance increases, the systemic oxygen concentrations decrease in VSD and increase in TGA. Even at large defect conductance, the two conditions remain distinct, however, since the mixing of the right and left ventricular blood pools is incomplete. This phenomenon of incomplete mixing sets quantitative limits on the benefits that can be achieved by surgical enlargement of the defect. A result of this study that may be useful in the management of TGA patients with a ventricular septal defect is the finding that there is a value of the pulmonary conductance that maximizes the effective flow and hence the systemic oxygen concentrations. The optimal pulmonary conductance is approximately equal to the systemic conductance when the defect is large.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-128
Number of pages34
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1989


  • Atrial septal defect
  • Computer model
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Hemodynamics
  • Mathematical model
  • Oxygen saturation
  • Pulmonary vascular resistance
  • Shunt flow
  • Transposition of the great arteries
  • Ventricular septal defect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics


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