Goal: Alveolar compliance is a main determinant of lung airflow. The compliance of the alveoli is a function of their tissue fiber elasticity, fiber volume, and surface tension. The compliance varies during respiration because of the nonlinear nature of fiber elasticity and the time-varying surface tension coating the alveoli. Respiratory conditions, like acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) affect fiber elasticity, fiber volume and surface tension. In this paper, we study the alveolar tissue fibers and surface tension effects on lung mechanics. Methods: To better understand the lungs, we developed a physiology-based mathematical model to 1) describe the effect of tissue fiber elasticity, fiber volume and surface tension on alveolar compliance, and 2) the effect of time-varying alveolar compliance on lung mechanics for healthy, ARDS and IPF conditions. Results: We first present the model sensitivity analysis to show the effects of model parameters on the lung mechanics variables. Then, we perform model simulation and validate on healthy non-ventilated subjects and ventilated ARDS or IPF patients. Finally, we assess the robustness and stability of this dynamic system. Conclusions: We developed a mathematical model of the lung mechanics comprising alveolar tissue and surfactant properties that generates reasonable lung pressures and volumes compared to healthy, ARDS, and IPF patient data.
Sign-in or become an IEEE member to discover the full contents of the paper.