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IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2018 Feb 28. doi: 10.1109/TBME.2018.2810508. [Epub ahead of print]

Model-based Assessment of f-Wave Signal Quality in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The detection and analysis of atrial fibrillation (AF) in the ECG is greatly influenced by signal quality. The present study proposes and evaluates a model-based f-wave signal quality index (SQI), denoted S, for use in the QRST-cancelled ECG signal.

METHODS:

S is computed using a harmonic f-wave model, allowing for variation in frequency and amplitude. The properties of S are evaluated on both f-waves and P-waves using 378 12-lead ECGs, 1875 single-lead ECGs, and simulated signals.

RESULTS:

S decreases monotonically when noise is added to f-wave signals, even for noise which overlaps spectrally with f-waves. Moreover, S is shown to be closely associated with the accuracy of AF frequency estimation, where S>0.3 implies accurate estimation. When S is used as a measure of f-wave presence, AF detection performance improves: the sensitivity increases from 97.0% to 98.1% and the specificity increases from 97.4% to 97.8% when compared to the reference detector.

CONCLUSION:

The proposed SQI represents a novel approach to assessing f-wave signal quality, as well as to determining whether f-waves are present.

SIGNIFICANCE:

The use of S improves the detection of AF and benefits the analysis of noisy ECGs.

PMID:
29993509
DOI:
10.1109/TBME.2018.2810508

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