Volume 13 Supplement 1
Development of a system for in vivo optical alveolar elastometry
© Schwenninger et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2009
Published: 13 March 2009
Micromechanical properties of alveolar walls are needed for finite element modeling of the lung that in turn may be used to guide mechanical ventilation therapy. The aim of this project is to develop an endomicroscopic device  to measure the local mechanics of alveolar walls in vitro and in vivo under varying conditions. Here we report on the development and the evaluation of the endoscopic system, which is – on the first run – performed in an artificial environment (bioreactor) with known mechanical properties.
Preliminary results were obtained in the bioreactor with a polymer membrane (polydimethylsiloxan) of 100 μm thickness. Graphite particles were used to produce a particle pattern. Deformation due to different Pt' was observed and recorded successfully.
The in vivo estimation of micromechanical properties such as the stress–strain relationship of elastic walls is feasible. For that, the developed system has to be technically optimized.