Development and characterization of a synthetic PVC/DEHP myocardial tissue analogue material for CT imaging applications

A simple myocardial analogue material has great potential to help researchers in the creation of medical CT Imaging phantoms. This work aims to outline a Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) plasticizer/PVC material to achieve this. DEHP-PVC was manufactured in three ratios, 75, 80, and 85% DEHP by heating at 110 °C for 10 min to promote DEHP-PVC binding followed by heating at 150 °C to melt the blend. The material was then tested utilizing FTIR, tensile testing, dynamic mechanical analysis and imaged with computed tomography. The FTIR testing finds the presence of C-CL and carbonyl bonds that demonstrate the binding required in this plasticized material. The tensile testing finds a modulus of 180–20 kPa that increases with the proportion of plasticizer. The dynamic mechanical analysis finds a linear increase in viscoelastic properties with a storage/loss modulus of 6/.5–120/18 kPa. Finally, the CT number of the material increases with higher PVC content from 55 to 144HU. The 80% DEHP-PVC ratio meets the mechanical and CT properties necessary to function as a myocardial tissue analogue.