Axial mechanical properties of fresh human cerebral blood vessels

Kenneth L. Monson, Werner Goldsmith, Nicholas M. Barbaro, Geoffrey T. Manley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

115 Scopus citations


Human cerebral blood vessels are frequently damaged in head impact, whether accidental or deliberate, resulting in intracranial bleeding. Additionally, the vasculature constitutes the support structure for the brain and, hence, plays a key role in the cranial load response. Quantification of its mechanical behavior, including limiting loads, is thus required for a proper understanding and modeling of traumatic brain injury - as well as providing substantial assistance in the development and application of preventive measures. It is believed that axial stretching is the dominant loading mode for the blood vessels, regardless of the nature of the insult. Eighteen arteries and fourteen veins were obtained from the cortical surface of the cerebral temporal lobe of patients undergoing surgery. These vessels were stretched to failure in the longitudinal direction, either quasistatically or dynamically. The significance of specimen and experiment parameters was determined using multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) testing. Results demonstrate that the arteries were considerably stiffer than the veins, carrying approximately twice as much stress at failure but withstanding only half as much stretch. No significant rate dependence was measured over a strain rate range of more than four orders of magnitude (0.01 to 500 s-1).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-294
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomechanical Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Physiology (medical)

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    Monson, K. L., Goldsmith, W., Barbaro, N. M., & Manley, G. T. (2003). Axial mechanical properties of fresh human cerebral blood vessels. Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, 125(2), 288-294.