BackgroundCongenital vascular disease is one of the leading causes of death in paediatric age. Despite the importance of paediatric haemodynamics, large investigations have been devoted to the evaluation of circulation in adults. The novelty of this study consists in the development of a well calibrated mathematical model of cardiovascular circulation in paediatric subjects. To reach the purpose, a model for adult circulation was modified and recalibrated with experimental data and literature from children to be able to calculate the flow rates and pressures in the brain and neck.MethodsThe haemodynamic model simulates the 76 main arteries, together with the main veins in brain and neck. A proper magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) dataset of 29 volunteers aged 12 ± 5 years (mean ± standard deviation) was used to extract age-dependent physiological and clinical parameters such as heart rate, flow rate, vessel cross section area, and blood pressure. The computational model was calibrated using such experimental data. The paediatric and adult model results were compared.ResultsIncrease of the vessels stiffness due to aging contributes to a flow rate decrease while blood pressure increases. In accordance, our simulation results show about 16% decrease in mean pressure of internal jugular vein in paediatric rather than adult subjects. The model outcomes indicated about 88% correlation with MRI data.ConclusionsThe mathematical model simulates the paediatric head and neck blood circulation. The model provides detailed information of human haemodynamics including arterial and venous network to study both paediatric and adult blood circulation.