Arterial Stiffness: Different Metrics, Different Meanings

Bart Spronck, Jay Humphrey*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Findings from basic science and clinical studies agree that arterial stiffness is fundamental to both the mechanobiology and the biomechanics that dictate vascular health and disease. There is, therefore, an appropriately growing literature on arterial stiffness. Perusal of the literature reveals, however, that many different methods and metrics are used to quantify arterial stiffness, and reported values often differ by orders of magnitude and have different meanings. Without clear definitions and an understanding of possible inter-relations therein, it is increasingly difficult to integrate results from the literature to glean true understanding. In this paper, we briefly review methods that are used to infer values of arterial stiffness that span studies on isolated cells, excised intact vessels, and clinical assessments. We highlight similarities and differences and identify a single theoretical approach that can be used across scales and applications and thus could help to unify future results. We conclude by emphasizing the need to move towards a synthesis of the many disparate reports, for only in this way will we be able to move from our current fragmented understanding to a true appreciation of how vascular cells maintain, remodel, or repair the arteries that are fundamental to cardiovascular properties and function.

Original languageEnglish
Article number091004
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biomechanical Engineering-Transactions of the Asme
Volume141
Issue number9
Early online date15 Apr 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • AORTIC STIFFNESS
  • ATOMIC-FORCE
  • CAROTID-ARTERY
  • EXPERT CONSENSUS DOCUMENT
  • MECHANICAL-PROPERTIES
  • NONINVASIVE TECHNIQUE
  • PRESSURE-DEPENDENCE
  • PULSE-WAVE VELOCITY
  • VASCULAR SMOOTH-MUSCLE
  • WALL MECHANICS
  • aorta
  • atomic force microscopy
  • elasticity
  • pulse wave velocity
  • stress

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