ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies

Aldana Blanco AL (2022)
Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld.

Bielefelder E-Dissertation | Englisch
 
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Abstract / Bemerkung
Human beings have been making use of their auditory abilities for diagnosis purposes since a long time. Although the term auscultation was coined at the beginning of the nineteenth century, references of listening to internal body sounds for diagnosis purposes can be traced back to ancient Egypt.

The field of sonification, although relatively new, has opened multiple opportunities to explore different types of data from its auditory representation. For instance, one of the most promising applications for sonification research is in the field of medicine. In this regard, sonification can become a tool to support diagnosis and monitoring in medical assessment. In a way, sonification is already used in medical environments, as it is common to find sounding medical devices in these scenarios. Nonetheless, current sonifications are mainly based on the idea of conveying low-level features of data, yet this approach doesn't fully explode the powerful capabilities of the human auditory system to recognize patterns and changes in auditory signals even in the presence of multiple simultaneous sound streams. Moreover, current alarm sounds are not designed taking into account important aesthetics components that should be considered when there are long-term listening requirements. The effect of poor sound design in medical devices is commonly known by the medical community, and it has led to problems such as alarm fatigue, in which alarm sounds can produce irritability in the medical personnel and might lead to underestimation of important sound cues.

This research project explores ECG sonification as a supporting tool for cardiac diagnosis and monitoring. In particular, we focus on two important pathologies: myocardial infarction and arrhythmias. Throughout the project, we propose a set of sonification methods to assist medical cardiac assessment particularly aimed to the detection of the previously mentioned pathologies. Moreover, we design a set of user studies to evaluate the proposed sonification methods in terms of aesthetic components, informativeness and suitability for long-term listening. Such studies involve participants with and without medical expertise.

Besides the sonification methods, we propose a set of sonification systems for off-line and real-time sonification of ECG signals. As a final development, we propose a combined system that allows users to record, visualise and sonify synchronized ECG and heart sound signals in order to provide a broader overview about the heart.

Results from the conducted user studies indicate that it is possible to find ECG sonification methods that are informative, meaning that they provide accurate and timely information about the ECG signals, but at the same time take into account important aesthetics components to address the problem of alarm fatigue. Results also show that some of the proposed sonification designs are better to mark transitions from healthy to pathological states.
Jahr
2022
Seite(n)
178
Page URI
https://pub.uni-bielefeld.de/record/2963535

Zitieren

Aldana Blanco AL. ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies. Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld; 2022.
Aldana Blanco, A. L. (2022). ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies. Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld. https://doi.org/10.4119/unibi/2963535
Aldana Blanco, A. L. (2022). ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies. Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld.
Aldana Blanco, A.L., 2022. ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies, Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld.
A.L. Aldana Blanco, ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies, Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld, 2022.
Aldana Blanco, A.L.: ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies. Universität Bielefeld, Bielefeld (2022).
Aldana Blanco, Andrea Lorena. ECG Sonification to Support Diagnosis and Monitoring of Cardiac Pathologies. Bielefeld: Universität Bielefeld, 2022.
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2022-06-09T10:29:16Z
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