A new method for the in vivo identification of degenerated material property ranges of the human eye: feasibility analysis based on synthetic data

Muench, S. and Roellig, M. and Balzani, D.

Volume: Pages:
DOI: 10.1007/s10237-021-01541-6
Published: 2021

This paper proposes a new method for in vivo and almost real-time identification of biomechanical properties of the human cornea based on non-contact tonometer data. Further goal is to demonstrate the method’s functionality based on synthetic data serving as reference. For this purpose, a finite element model of the human eye is constructed to synthetically generate full-field displacements from different data sets with keratoconus-like degradations. Then, a new approach based on the equilibrium gap method combined with a mechanical morphing approach is proposed and used to identify the material parameters from virtual test data sets. In a further step, random absolute noise is added to the virtual test data to investigate the sensitivity of the new approach to noise. As a result, the proposed method shows a relevant accuracy in identifying material parameters based on full-field displacements. At the same time, the method turns out to work almost in real time (order of a few minutes on a regular workstation) and is thus much faster than inverse problems solved by typical forward approaches. On the other hand, the method shows a noticeable sensitivity to rather small noise amplitudes rendering the method not accurate enough for the precise identification of individual parameter values. However, analysis show that the accuracy is sufficient for the identification of property ranges which might be related to diseased tissues. Thereby, the proposed approach turns out promising with view to diagnostic purposes. © 2021, The Author(s).

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