A Computational Biomechanical Airway Model for Obese Children at Risk for OSAS

Project: Research project


ABSTRACT Childhood obesity remains epidemic and is most prevalent in minorities. Obese children have a higher risk for developing obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) with an estimated prevalence of 50%, compared to the general pediatric population with a known prevalence of 2-4%. OSAS carries with it significant neurocognitive, cardiovascular, and metabolic derangements. Additionally, obese children do not respond well to treatment such as adenotonsillectomy or weight loss with residual OSAS exceeding 50%. Despite progress that has been made in recent years to understand the anatomical and functional attributes of OSAS in children, the precise mechanism leading to the disorder remains unknown in the majority of obese children, hindering the development of efficacious treatments. Thus, the overarching goal of this study is to implement state-of-the-art dynamic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and image analytics using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and biomechanical modeling, to establish the biomechanical basis that leads to OSAS or protects from it, in naïve and treated children with obesity.
Effective start/end date8/15/164/30/21


  • National Institutes of Health: $626,446.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $788,036.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $757,906.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $420,407.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $749,556.00


Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Pediatric Obesity
Down Syndrome
Child Development
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Weight Loss


  • Medicine(all)