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Analysis of Heart Rate Variability signal in clinical applications

Author: Krzysztof Kudryński MSc

Supervisor: Associate Professor Paweł Strumiłło Msc PhD DSc

The thesis won the competition for the best MSc thesis in the academic year 2006/2007 organized by the Polish Association of Electric Engineers (SEP) and the Faculty of Electrical, Electronic, Computer and Control Engineering of the Technical University of Lodz.

Abstract

In this thesis the methodologies of the Heart Rate Variability (HRV) analysis are described, various methods used in it are analysed, and a computer program for the spectral analysis of HRV is created basing on the results of research and evaluation. The motivation for this work is an increasing interest in non-invasive heart disease diagnosis. Application of HRV analysis in observation of patients with heart ailments makes the early prediction of various cardiac failures possible, which enables its quick prevention.

The methods evaluated in the thesis are nonparametric periodograms with various modifications and parametric autoregressive and moving average models. There is also an attempt to analyse the time domain measures and the approximate entropy indicator. All the methods have been prototyped and evaluated based on the data provided by the cardiologists. This data was registered both from the healthy subjects and subjects suffering from heart disease. The algorithms known from literature were programmed in Matlab environment. The final program is Matlab-independent as it is fully reprogrammed in Java open source language.

The obtained results give rise to the general conclusion that spectral analysis could be a very useful tool in assessing the state of patient’s heart but without proper knowledge of the methods could lead to very dangerous misdiagnosis.