Polydisperse Aerosol Transport and Deposition in Upper Airways of Age-Specific Lung

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2021, 18, (12)
Issue Date:
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A comprehensive understanding of airflow characteristics and particle transport in the human lung can be useful in modelling to inform clinical diagnosis, treatment, and management, including prescription medication and risk assessment for rehabilitation. One of the difficulties in clinical treatment of lung disorders lies in the patients' variable physical lung characteristics caused by age, amongst other factors, such as different lung sizes. A precise understanding of the comparison between different age groups with various flow rates is missing in the literature, and this study aims to analyse the airflow and aerosol transport within the age-specific lung. ANSYS Fluent solver and the large-eddy simulation (LES) model were employed for the numerical simulation. The numerical model was validated with the available literature and the computational results showed airway size-reduction significantly affected airflow and particle transport in the upper airways. This study reports higher deposition at the mouth-throat region for larger diameter particles. The overall deposition efficiency (DE) increased with airway size reduction and flow rate. Lung aging effected the pressure distribution and a higher pressure drop was reported for the aged lung as compared to the younger lung. These findings could inform medical management through individualised simulation of drug-aerosol delivery processes for the patient-specific lung.
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