Comparison of Single and Multi-Reference QRD-RLS Adaptive Filter for Non-Invasive Fetal Electrocardiography

Eleonora Sulas1, Monica Urru2, Roberto Tumbarello2, Luigi Raffo1, Danilo Pani

  • 1University of Cagliari
  • 2Division of Paediatric Cardiology, S.Michele Hospital, Cagliari,



Oral Session


08:30 - 10:00 | Wed 24 Jul | Hall A8 - Level 1 | WeA02

Adaptive and Kalman Filtering

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Non-invasive fetal electrocardiography (ECG) would allow accessing very relevant information on fetal cardiac function, especially for arrhythmias. However, the signal-to-noise ratio is significantly low, since fetal ECG is embedded in instrumental noise and spectrally overlapping maternal electrophysiological interferences. Among the different techniques proposed in the scientific literature, some variants of adaptive filters have been proposed for maternal ECG cancellation and fetal QRS complex enhancement. Such techniques encompass approaches using one or more reference signals, which is an important aspect for the development of accurate and unobtrusive monitoring systems. In this work, this aspect is systematically analyzed by comparing single- and multi-reference implementations of the QRD-RLS adaptive filter, and by challenging them in the fetal ECG enhancement on three abdominal leads differently oriented in space. The performance is assessed on real data in terms of signal-to-interference ratio, detection of fetal QRS complexes and maternal ECG attenuation. Multi-reference implementation reveals its superiority, whereas the single-reference implementation suffers from the electrodes positioning and cannot be trustily used even for the fetal heart rate only on the adopted dataset.

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