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Analyzing systolic time intervals-specifically the preejection-period (PEP)-is widely accepted as one of the few methods for the noninvasive assessment of cardiac contractility. In this paper, we investigated the ballistocardiogram (BCG) as a way to noninvasively measure myocardial contractility when combined with the ECG. Specifically, we derived a parameter from the BCG and ECG that we hypothesized would be highly correlated to PEP. This is the time delay between the J-wave peak of the BCG and the R-wave of the ECG, which we refer to as the RJ interval. The RJ interval was correlated to PEP (r2 = 0.86) for 2126 heart beats across ten subjects, with a y-intercept of 138 ms and slope of 1.05. This suggests that the RJ interval can be reliably used as a noninvasive assessment of cardiac contractility.
Information Technology in Biomedicine, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:15 , Issue: 6 )
Date of Publication: Nov. 2011