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Evaluation and Application of a RBF Neural Network for Online Single-Sweep Extraction of SEPs During Scoliosis Surgery

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6 Author(s)
Merzagora, A.C. ; Polytech. Univ. of Milan, Milan ; Bracchi, F. ; Cerutti, S. ; Rossi, L.
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A method for on-line single sweep detection of somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) during intraoperative neuromonitoring is proposed. It is based on a radial-basis function neural network with Gaussian activations. In order to improve its tracking capabilities, the radial-basis functions location is partially learnt sweep-by-sweep; the training algorithm is effective, though consistent with real-time applications. This new detection method has been tested on simulated data so as to set the network parameters. Moreover, it has been applied to real recordings obtained from a new neuromonitoring technique which is based on the simultaneous observation of the SEP and of the evoked H-reflex elicited by the same electric stimulus. The SEPs have been extracted using the neural network and the results have then been compared to those obtained by ARX filtering and correlated with the spinal cord integrity information obtained by the H-reflex. The proposed algorithm has been proved to be particularly effective and suitable for single-sweep detection. It is able to track both sudden and smooth signal changes of both amplitude and latency and the needed computational time is moderate.

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Biomedical Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:54 ,  Issue: 7 )