Effect of ultrasound on bone fracture healing: A computational bioregulatory model

Vavva, Maria G., Grivas, Konstantinos N., Carlier, Aurélie, Polyzos, Demosthenes, Geris, Liesbet, Van Oosterwyck, Hans & Fotiadis, Dimitrios I.

Published: 01/09/2018


Bone healing is a complex biological procedure in which several cellular actions, directed by biochemical and mechanical signals, take place. Experimental studies have shown that ultrasound accelerates bone ossification and has a multiple influence on angiogenesis. In this study a mathematical model predicting bone healing under the presence of ultrasound is demonstrated. The primary objective is to account for the ultrasound effect on angiogenesis and more specifically on the transport of the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF). Partial differential equations describing the spatiotemporal evolution of cells, growth factors, tissues and ultrasound acoustic pressure and velocity equations determining the development of the blood vessel network constitute the present model. The effect of the ultrasound characteristics on angiogenesis and bone healing is investigated by applying different boundary conditions of acoustic pressure at the periosteal region of the bone model, which correspond to different intensity values. The results made clear that ultrasound enhances angiogenesis mechanisms during bone healing. The proposed model could be regarded as a step towards the monitoring of the effect of ultrasound on bone regeneration.

Full Access Link: Computers in Biology and Medicine