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Monitoring procedures are the basis to evaluate the clinical state of patients and to assess changes in their status, thus providing necessary interventions in time. To obtain this important objective it is necessary to integrate technological development with systems performing biomedical knowledge extraction and classification. Methods extracting non linear characteristics from HRV signal are presented and discussed to stress that integrated and multiparametric signal processing approaches can contribute to new diagnostic and classification indices. Examples report heart rate variability analysis in long periods in patients with cardiovascular disease. Fetal ECG monitoring is another example. In this case, coupling nonlinear parameters and linear time and frequency techniques increases diagnostic power and reliability of the monitoring. The paper shows that integrated signal analysis is very helpful to describe pathophysiological mechanisms involved in the cardiovascular and neural system control. It is a reliable basis to set up knowledge-based monitoring systems.