Journal of Clinical Monitoring

, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp 201–206 | Cite as

An algorithm for monitoring sensory evoked potentials

  • J. R. Boston


Brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEP) testing is used extensively to monitor auditory function during retromastoid craniectomies for microvascular decompression. The latency between BAEP peaks can change notably over a period of several seconds or minutes, a much shorter time than is necessary to acquire and analyze a conventionally averaged BAEP. This article describes a continuous monitoring algorithm that detects both large, rapid changes in waveform and slow changes in latency. A prestimulus control interval in the response data window provides a mechanism for evaluating the reliability of the response. The algorithm tracks the latency and amplitude of a selected peak, using several checks to avoid detecting the wrong peak. The tracking mechanism is simple yet effective and eliminates the need to suspend averaging for manual measurement of peak parameters. The peak latency and amplitude are displayed immediately. The algorithm indicates gross changes in the BAEP within 30 seconds and provides reliable data on latency trends. By increasing the frequency of acquiring new waveforms, the algorithm provides more immediate information for the surgeon.

Key words

Evoked potentials Monitoring Algorithm: peak detection, signal averaging 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Raudzens PA, Shelter AG: Intra-operative monitoring of brain stem auditory evoked potentials. J Neurosurg 1982;57:341–348PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Grundy BL: Intraoperative monitoring of sensory-evoked potentials. Anesthesiology 1982;58:72–87CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Boston JR, Deneault LG, Kronk L, Jannetta PJ: Automated monitoring of brainstem auditory evoked potentials in the operating room. J Clin Monit 1985;1:161–167PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Boston JR, Deneault LG: Sensory evoked potentials: A system for clinical testing and patient monitoring. Int J Clin Monit Computing 1984;1:13–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Little, Brown and Company, Inc. 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. R. Boston
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnesthesiologyUniversity of Pittsburgh School of MedicinePittsburgh

Personalised recommendations