Numerical and experimental flow analysis of the Wang-Zwische double-lumen cannula

Carmine De Bartolo, Alessandra Nigro, Gionata Fragomeni, Francesco M. Colacino, Dongfang Wang, Cameron C. Jones, Joseph Zwischenberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


An experimental and numerical analysis was performed for the Wang-Zwische double-lumen cannula (DLC) (Avalon Elite). The aim of this work was to provide insight for future improvement by characterizing the fluid dynamic behavior of the novel catheter with metrics often associated with blood trauma. Pressure and flow distributions were measured on a steady-flow rig using a 50% glycerol-water mixture by imposing a 2 L/min flow rate across the drainage and infusion lumens. The fluid was modeled as Newtonian with density of 1050 kg/m3 and dynamic viscosity of 0.0035 kg/m·s. Reynolds numbers typical for transitional flow (Re = 2000-2500) were computed within the lumens because of the changing cross-sections of the cannula geometry. Numerical computations were performed using the steady three-dimensional Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations and the low-Reynolds k-ω turbulence model. Discretization of governing equations was based on a cell-centered finite volume method. Numerical results correlated well with global performance of the cannula, allowing evaluation of the geometry toward potential blood trauma. Peak wall shear stress (WSS) in the drainage lumen was higher than that of infusion lumen, mainly due to the presence of side holes. Furthermore, recirculation regions were predicted in transition tubing to connectors of both the drainage and the infusion lumens because of adverse pressure gradients caused by the sudden enlargement of the cannula geometry. In this three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) study, we observed higher peak WSS values for the drainage lumen, which may potentially cause blood trauma. Furthermore, recirculation regions were predicted in the proximity of the exit sections of both the infusion and drainage lumens, which may contribute to thrombosis formation. This study provides insight for future DLC modifications in minimizing cannula-induced blood trauma and thrombogenicity in long-term applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-327
Number of pages10
JournalASAIO Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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