This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.
A hydraulic engineer could tell you that unusual flow patterns are likely where a rapidly moving fluid diverges into two streams—at the carotid bifurcation, for example.
But it was only during the last year, and only with a very advanced ultrasonic scanning system, that scientists demonstrated for the first time a phenomenon predicted by theoreticians: an area of reverse blood flow just beyond the carotid bifurcation. This phenomenon, called a "boundary layer" or "flow separation" in hydraulic engineering parlance, is the basis for a newly emerging theory of how and why atherosclerosis develops.
The finding of a boundary layer was reported at the recent Joint International Conference on Stroke and Cerebral Circulation in New Orleans by Christopher P. L. Wood, MB, BS, of the British Medical Research Council's Clinical Research Centre in Harrow, England. While a visiting fellow in the neurology department at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine in
Check WA. Carotid 'whirlpool' sweeps in new atherogenesis theory. JAMA. 1982;247(20):2761–2765. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03320450007004
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: