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Effects of using different algorithms and fiducial points for the detection of interbeat intervals, and different sampling rates on the assessment of pulse rate variability from photoplethysmography

Mejía-Mejía, E. ORCID: 0000-0002-5357-4329, May, J.M. ORCID: 0000-0002-8659-756X & Kyriacou, P. A. ORCID: 0000-0002-2868-485X (2022). Effects of using different algorithms and fiducial points for the detection of interbeat intervals, and different sampling rates on the assessment of pulse rate variability from photoplethysmography. Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine, 218, 106724. doi: 10.1016/j.cmpb.2022.106724

Abstract

Objective
Pulse Rate Variability (PRV) has been widely used as a surrogate of Heart Rate Variability (HRV). However, there are several technical aspects that may affect the extraction of PRV information from pulse wave signals such as the photoplethysmogram (PPG). The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of changing the algorithm and fiducial points used for determining inter-beat intervals (IBIs), as well as the PPG sampling rate, from simulated PPG signals with known PRV content.

Methods
PPG signals were simulated using a proposed model, in which PRV information can be modelled. Two independent experiments were performed. First, 5 IBIs detection algorithms and 8 fiducial points were used for assessing PRV information from the simulated PPG signals, and time-domain and Poincaré plot indices were extracted and compared to the expected values according to the simulated PRV. The best combination of algorithms and fiducial points were determined for each index, using factorial designs. Then, using one of the best combinations, PPG signals were simulated with varying sampling rates. PRV indices were extracted and compared to the expected values using Student t-tests or Mann-Whitney U-tests.

Results
From the first experiment, it was observed that AVNN and SD2 indices behaved similarly, and there was no significant influence of the fiducial points used. For other indices, there were several combinations that behaved similarly well, mostly based on the detection of the valleys of the PPG signal. There were differences according to the quality of the PPG signal. From the second experiment, it was observed that, for all indices but SDNN, the higher the sampling rate the better. AVNN and SD2 showed no statistical differences even at the lowest evaluated sampling rate (32 Hz), while RMSSD, pNN50, S, SD1 and SD1/SD2 showed good performance at sampling rates as low as 128 Hz.

Conclusion
The best combination of IBIs detection algorithms and fiducial points differs according to the application, but those based on the detection of the valleys of the PPG signal tend to show a better performance. The sampling rate of PPG signals for PRV analysis could be lowered to around 128 Hz, although it could be further lowered according to the application.

Significance
The standardisation of PRV analysis could increase the reliability of this signal and allow for the comparison of results obtained from different studies. The obtained results allow for a first approach to establish guidelines for two important aspects in PRV analysis from PPG signals, i.e. the way the IBIs are segmented from PPG signals, and the sampling rate that should be used for these analyses. Moreover, a model for simulating PPG signals with PRV information has been proposed, which allows for the establishing of these guidelines while controlling for other variables, such as the quality of the PPG signal.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
Publisher Keywords: Photoplethysmography, Pulse rate variability, Fiducial points, Inter-beat intervals, Simulation
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
T Technology > TK Electrical engineering. Electronics Nuclear engineering
Departments: School of Science & Technology
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