Thrombus formation at the interface between connectors and tubes is a potential risk factor for complications. We investigated time-dependent relationships between formation of thrombus and hemodynamic factors at the interface between connectors and tubes using optical coherence tomography (OCT) under pulsatile flow. A swept-source OCT with the center wavelength of 1330 nm was employed. The sequential process of thrombus formation at the interface of connectors and tubes in the inlet and outlet was investigated. Connectors with and without tapers were tested using identical 50-ml air-contactless circuits. Fresh human blood from healthy volunteers was circulated under pulsatile flow. Thrombus initially formed at the interface between the connector tip and the tube. Geometries of thrombus growth were different between the 2 connectors, and between the inlet and the outlet. Growth of thrombus was observed at the interface between the connectors and tubes over time in 60 min circulation, except at the outlet part of connector without tapers. At the connector without tapers outlet, thrombus propagation length from the connector edge toward the flow downstream was comparable at 10 and 60 min (0.55 ± 0.35 vs. 0.51 ± 0.32 mm, p = 0.83). Analysis using particle image velocimetry showed the presence of a flow reattachment point 1.5 mm downstream from the connector edge. These results suggest that the flow reattachment point inhibits downstream thrombus growth. We quantitatively demonstrated sequential thrombus process at the interface between the connectors and tubes under pulsatile flow of human blood using OCT.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biomedical Engineering
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine