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A new method for real-time heart rate variability (HRV) detection from the R-wave signal, based on the integral pulse frequency modulation (IPFM) model and its similarity to pulse position modulation, is presented. The proposed method exerts lowpass filtering with a Kaiser window. It can also be used for off-line HRV analysis in both the time and frequency domains. Real-time bandpass filtering as a new HRV investigation method and as a by-product of the proposed algorithm is also introduced. Furthermore, the discrete time domain version of the French-Holden algorithm is developed, and it is thoroughly proved that lowpass filtering is an ideal method for detection of HRV.