Detection of Heart Beat Positions in ECG Recordings: A Lead-Dependent Algorithm

Víctor Mondelo 1 * , María J. Lado 1, Arturo J. Méndez 1, Xosé A. Vila 1, Leandro Rodríguez-Liñares 1

Journal of Information Systems Engineering & Management, Volume 2, Issue 3, Article No: 13.

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This paper proposes a computerized heartbeat detection method in single-channel electrocardiograms (ECGs). First, the well-known Pan-Tompkins technique was implemented, and next, a channel-dependent version was developed, by adjusting threshold values and reducing false QRS detections. The algorithms were tested with the MIT-BIH Arrhythmia Database (original algorithm), and with the St. Petersburg Database (modified version). When validating the performances of the original Pan-Tompkins algorithm, we have achieved a sensitivity of Se = 99.81, at a positive predictivity (P+) = 99.85%. The F-Score was 0.9587, and the RMS RR Interval Error (RMSRRIE) resulted to be 4,480.46 ms. When analysing the performance of the modified algorithm, results provided an average value of Se = 99.92%, P+ = 99.98%, F-Score = 0.9718, and a mean value of 111.05 ms. for the RMSRRIE. In conclusion, the improved Pan-Tompkins algorithm provides higher values for sensitivity and positive predictivity, increased F-Score, and it significantly reduces the temporal error when estimating the positions of QRS complexes. Thus, it could be used as a starting point to detect heartbeat positions in more sophisticated computerized detection systems.


electrocardiogram, QRS, heart beat detection, single-channel, multi-channel


Mondelo, V., Lado, M. J., Méndez, A. J., Vila, X. A., and Rodríguez-Liñares, L. (2017). Detection of Heart Beat Positions in ECG Recordings: A Lead-Dependent Algorithm. Journal of Information Systems Engineering & Management, 2(3), 13.

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