AuthorsT. Thorvaldsen, H. Osnes and J. Sundnes
TitleA Mixed Finite Element Formulation for a Nonlinear, Transversely Isotropic Material Model for the Cardiac Tissue
AfilliationScientific Computing, Scientific Computing
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
JournalComputer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering
Date PublishedDecember

In this paper we present a mixed finite element method for modeling the passive properties of the myocardium. The passive properties are described by a non-linear, transversely isotropic, hyperelastic material model, and the myocardium is assumed to be almost incompressible. Single-field, pure displacement-based formulations are known to cause numerical difficulties when applied to incompressible or slightly compressible material cases. This paper presents an alternative approach in the form of a mixed formulation, where a separately interpolated pressure field is introduced as a primary unknown in addition to the displacement field. Moreover, a constraint term is included in the formulation to enforce (almost) incompressibility. Numerical results presented in the paper demonstrate the difficulties related to employing a pure displacement-based method, applying a set of physically relevant material parameter values for the cardiac tissue. The same problems are not experienced for the proposed mixed method. We show that the mixed formulation provides reasonable numerical results for compressible as well as nearly incompressible cases, also in situations of large fiber stretches. There is good agreement between the numerical results and the underlying analytical models.

Citation KeyThorvaldsen.2005.1