The effects of asymmetric volume conductor modeling on non-invasive fetal ECG extraction

Keenan, Emerson, Karmakar, Chandan Kumar and Palaniswami, Marimuthu 2018, The effects of asymmetric volume conductor modeling on non-invasive fetal ECG extraction, Physiological measurement, vol. 39, no. 10, pp. 1-16, doi: 10.1088/1361-6579/aae305.

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Title The effects of asymmetric volume conductor modeling on non-invasive fetal ECG extraction
Author(s) Keenan, Emerson
Karmakar, Chandan KumarORCID iD for Karmakar, Chandan Kumar
Palaniswami, Marimuthu
Journal name Physiological measurement
Volume number 39
Issue number 10
Article ID 105013
Start page 1
End page 16
Total pages 16
Publisher IOP Publishing
Place of publication Bristol, Eng.
Publication date 2018-10
ISSN 0967-3334
Keyword(s) finite element method
non-invasive fetal electrocardiography (NI-FECG)
T/QRS ratio
vernix caseosa
volume conductor model
Summary OBJECTIVE: Non-invasive fetal electrocardiography (NI-FECG) shows promise for capturing novel physiological information that may indicate signs of fetal distress. However, significant deterioration in NI-FECG signal quality occurs during the presence of a highly non-conductive layer known as vernix caseosa which forms on the fetal body surface beginning in approximately the 28th week of gestation. This work investigates asymmetric modeling of vernix caseosa and other maternal-fetal tissues in accordance with clinical observations and assesses their impacts for NI-FECG signal processing. APPROACH: We develop a process for simulating dynamic maternal-fetal abdominal ECG mixtures using a synthetic cardiac source model embedded in a finite element volume conductor. Using this process, changes in NI-FECG signal morphology are assessed in an extensive set of finite element models including spatially variable distributions of vernix caseosa. MAIN RESULTS: Our simulations show that volume conductor asymmetry can result in over 70% error in the observed T/QRS ratio and significant changes to signal morphology compared to a homogeneous volume conductor model. Volume conductor effects must be considered when analyzing T/QRS ratios obtained via NI-FECG and should be considered in future algorithm benchmarks using simulated data. SIGNIFICANCE: This work shows that without knowledge of the influence of volume conductor effects, clinical evaluation of the T/QRS ratio derived via NI-FECG should be avoided.
Language eng
DOI 10.1088/1361-6579/aae305
Field of Research 0903 Biomedical Engineering
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2018, Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine
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