The influence of coincidence of fetal and maternal QRS complexes on fetal heart rate reliability

Abstract

Bioelectrical fetal heart activity being recorded from maternal abdominal surface contains more information than mechanical heart activity measurement based on the Doppler ultrasound signals. However, it requires extraction of fetal electrocardiogram from abdominal signals where the maternal electrocardiogram is dominant. The simplest technique for maternal component suppression is a blanking procedure, which relies upon the replacement of maternal QRS complexes by isoline values. Although, in case of coincidence of fetal and maternal QRS complexes, it causes a loss of information on fetal heart activity. Its influence on determination of fetal heart rate and the variability analysis depends on the sensitivity of the heart-beat detector used. The sensitivity is defined as an ability to detect the incomplete fetal QRS complex. The aim of this work was to evaluate the influence of the maternal electrocardiogram suppression method used on the reliability of FHR signal being calculated.

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Abbreviations

ΔR :

Detection error of the R wave

ΔT F :

Variation of fetal T RR duration

ΔT M :

Variation of maternal T RR duration

C :

Class of rest component

CF:

Coincidence coefficient

CP:

Rest component of the fetal QRS complex

CR:

Marker of class membership

DE:

Percentage of the detected QRS complexes to their overall number

DFD :

Detection function based on combination of derivative of the FECG

DFF :

Detection function based on linear filtration of the FECG

FECG:

Fetal electrocardiogram

FHR:

Fetal heart rate

JTFA:

Joined time-frequency analysis

MECG:

Maternal electrocardiogram

N :

Number of all fetal QRS complexes in the signal

QRSF :

Width of fetal QRS complex

QRS RF :

Width of the fetal QRS complex after blanking

QRSM :

Width of maternal QRS complex

SNR:

Signal to noise ratio

T F :

Base value of fetal T RR interval

T M :

Base value of maternal T RR interval

T RR :

Time interval between two consecutive R waves

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Acknowledgment

Scientific work financed from the State Committee for Scientific Research resources in the years 2004–2006 as a research project No. 3 T11E 01726. Adam Matonia is a fellowship holder of the Foundation for Polish Sciences

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Correspondence to Janusz Jezewski.

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Matonia, A., Jezewski, J., Kupka, T. et al. The influence of coincidence of fetal and maternal QRS complexes on fetal heart rate reliability. Med Bio Eng Comput 44, 393–403 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11517-006-0054-0

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Keywords

  • Fetal monitoring
  • Abdominal fetal electrocardiography
  • Fetal heart rate
  • Biomedical instrumentation