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Finite Element Modeling of the Posterior Eye in MicrogravityMicrogravity experienced during spaceflight affects astronauts in various ways, including weakened muscles and loss of bone density. Recently, visual impairment and intracranial pressure (VIIP) syndrome has become a major concern for space missions lasting longer than 30 days. Astronauts suffering from VIIP syndrome have changes in ocular anatomical and visual impairment that persist after returning to earth. It is hypothesized that a cephalad fluid shift in microgravity may increase the intracranial pressure (ICP), which leads to an altered biomechanical environment of the posterior globe and optic nerve sheath (ONS).Currently, there is a lack of knowledge of how elevated ICP may lead to vision impairment and connective tissue changes in VIIP. Our goal was to develop a finite element model to simulate the acute effects of elevated ICP on the posterior eye and optic nerve sheath. We used a finite element (FE) analysis approach to understand the response of the lamina cribrosa and optic nerve to the elevations in ICP thought to occur in microgravity and to identify which tissue components have the greatest impact on strain experienced by optic nerve head tissues.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Glenn Research Center
Document Type
Conference Paper
Feola, Andrew
(Georgia Inst. of Tech. Atlanta, GA, United States)
Raykin, Julia
(Georgia Inst. of Tech. Atlanta, GA, United States)
Mulugeta, Lealem
(Universities Space Research Association Boulder, CO, United States)
Gleason, Rudolph
(Georgia Inst. of Tech. Atlanta, GA, United States)
Myers, Jerry G.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Nelson, Emily S.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Samuels, Brian
(Alabama Univ. Birmingham, AL, United States)
Ethier, C. Ross
(Georgia Inst. of Tech. Atlanta, GA, United States)
Date Acquired
September 24, 2015
Publication Date
June 17, 2015
Subject Category
Numerical Analysis
Aerospace Medicine
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
Meeting: Summer Biomechanics, Bioengineering and Biotransport Conference
Location: Snowbird, UT
Country: United States
Start Date: June 17, 2015
End Date: June 20, 2015
Sponsors: National Inst. of Health, National Science Foundation
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 516724.01.02.10
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
intraocular pressure
mathematical models
intracranial pressure
eye (anatomy)
fluid shift (biological)
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