Biomedical Engineering Letters

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 325–332 | Cite as

ECG arrhythmia classification using time frequency distribution techniques

  • Safa Sultan Qurraie
  • Rashid Ghorbani Afkhami
Original Article


In this paper, we focus on classifying cardiac arrhythmias. The MIT-BIH database is used with 14 original classes of labeling which is then mapped into 5 more general classes, using the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation standard. Three types of features were selected with a focus on the time–frequency aspects of ECG signal. After using the Wigner–Ville distribution the time–frequency plane is split into 9 windows considering the frequency bandwidth and time duration of ECG segments and peaks. The summation over these windows are employed as pseudo-energy features in classification. The “subject-oriented” scheme is used in classification, meaning the train and test sets include samples from different subjects. The subject-oriented method avoids the possible overfitting issues and guaranties the authenticity of the classification. The overall sensitivity and positive predictivity of classification is 99.67 and 98.92%, respectively, which shows a significant improvement over previous studies.


Cardiac arrhythmia Classification Decision tree Ensemble learner Time–frequency analysis Wigner–Ville distribution 


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Copyright information

© Korean Society of Medical and Biological Engineering and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Electrical and Computer EngineeringUniversity of TabrizTabrizIran
  2. 2.Faculty of Engineering and Built EnvironmentUniversity of NewcastleCallaghanAustralia

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