Detection of and Recovery from Errors in Cardiac Interbeat Intervals


  • Michael N. Cheung

    Corresponding author
    1. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    • Address requests for reprints to: Michael N. Cheung, Perinatal Unit, Room 5203, Cook County Hospital, Chicago, Illinois 60612.

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  • The work described in this manuscript was supported in part by research grant HD05951 from the National Institutes of Health awarded to Stephen W. Porges. Development andtesting of the algorithm and programs was accomplished using the computing facilities of Dr. Porges' laboratory and those of the Perinatal Unit al Cook County Hospital. Chicago.


An algorithm is presented for the detection and correction of errors in cardiac interbeat interval data. Detection of errors is based on the assumption that the beat-to-beat variation in R-R intervals cannot exceed certain critical percentages of the preceding interval. Detected errors are corrected by merging the questionable internal with the preceding or the succeeding interval, or by subdividing it, in such manner that the resultant beat-to-beat variability, is minimized. The algorithm is shown mathematically to be capable of detecting errors in data with extreme beat-to-beat variability. Empirical experience with the algorithm suggests that it corrects errors satisfactorily under vigorous conditions.