Each year, approximately 50,000 aortic valve replacement operations are performed in the United States, but despite decades of development, many of the limitations of aortic valve prostheses remain consequences of the fluid dynamics induced by the replacement valve. We aim to develop detailed fluid-structure interaction (FSI) models of aortic valve prostheses mounted within a ViVitro Systems, Inc. pulse duplicator. Here, we describe numerical methods for simulating FSI with rigid structures, such as the leaflets of a mechanical heart valve, and we present initial three-dimensional simulation studies of the fluid dynamics of a St. Jude Regent bileaflet valve prosthesis.

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