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There is increasing demand for accurate characterization of the in vivo behavior of microbubble agents used for ultrasound imaging and therapy. This study examines bubble-vessel interaction, in particular the propagation of disturbances along the vessel wall. Finite element simulations of a 3 μm radius microbubble suspended in a viscous liquid and enclosed in a 4 μm radius elastic vessel were performed, and the results compared with existing analytical results for wave propagation in elastic liquid-filled tubes. The vessel wall was shown to have a significant effect upon the amplitude of bubble oscillation and hence acoustic radiation from it, as well as distension of the vessel wall. It was found that the most important factor was the ratio of the excitation frequency to the natural "ring" frequency of the vessel which in turn depends upon its dimensions and mechanical properties. As this ratio increases, the motion of the vessel wall becomes increasingly localized to the site of the bubble. It was also shown that the validity of the results obtained using the applied model of vessel elasticity is limited to frequencies below the ring frequency, and this should be taken into account in the development of protocols for ultrasound safety and/or therapeutic procedures.

Original publication

DOI

10.1121/1.3646904

Type

Journal article

Journal

The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

Publication Date

11/2011

Volume

130

Pages

2700 - 2708

Addresses

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University College London, Torrington Place, London WC1E 7JE, United Kingdom. s.martynov@ucl.ac.uk

Keywords

Contrast Media, Reproducibility of Results, Microbubbles, Finite Element Analysis, Ultrasonics, Elasticity, Vibration, Pressure, Models, Theoretical, Time Factors, Computer Simulation, Numerical Analysis, Computer-Assisted