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Temporal correction of detected R-peaks in ECG signals: A crucial step to improve QRS detection algorithms

: Gradl, S.; Leutheuser, H.; Elgendi, M.; Lang, N.; Eskofier, B.M.


Cerutti, S. ; Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers -IEEE-; IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society -EMBS-:
37th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2015. Vol.1 : Milan, Italy, 25 - 29 August 2015
Piscataway, NJ: IEEE, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-4244-9269-5
ISBN: 978-1-4244-9270-1
Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC Annual International Conference) <37, 2015, Milan>
Fraunhofer IIS ()

In the last decade the interest for heart rate variability analysis has increased tremendously. Related algorithms depend on accurate temporal localization of the heartbeat, e.g. the R-peak in electrocardiogram signals, especially in the presence of arrhythmia. This localization can be delivered by numerous solutions found in the literature which all lack an exact specification of their temporal precision. We implemented three different state-of-the-art algorithms and evaluated the precision of their R-peak localization. We suggest a method to estimate the overall R-peak temporal inaccuracy-dubbed beat slackness-of QRS detectors with respect to normal and abnormal beats. We also propose a simple algorithm that can complement existing detectors to reduce this slackness. Furthermore we define improvements to one of the three detectors allowing it to be used in real-time on mobile devices or embedded hardware. Across the entire MIT-BIH Arrhythmia Database, the average slackness of all the tested algorithms was 9 ms for normal beats and 1 3 ms for abnormal beats. Using our complementing algorithm this could be reduced to 4 ms for normal beats and to 7 ms for abnormal beats. The presented methods can be used to significantly improve the precision of R-peak detection and provide an additional measurement for QRS detector performance.