Biomechanics pp 446-513 | Cite as

Coronary Blood Flow

  • Y. C. Fung


While the heart pumps blood to serve the whole body, the heart muscle itself must be perfused. Yet the perfusion of the heart is unique. Most of the coronary blood vessels are embedded in the myocardium. In every cardiac cycle, the blood in these vessels are squeezed by the muscle cells. The interaction between the muscle cells and the blood vessels dominates the coronary blood flow. None of the individual coronary blood vessels functions as a free tube. The heart muscle cells and the interstitial connective tissues and fluid impose normal and shear stresses and physical constraints on the external surfaces of the coronary blood vessels. Since, however, there is no stress gauge to measure the forces of interaction directly, theoretical analysis plays a major role in assessing the boundary conditions at the external surface of the coronary blood vessel in vivo.


Left Anterior Descend Right Coronary Artery Coronary Blood Flow Order Number Vessel Element 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Y. C. Fung
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BioengineeringUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA

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