A Novel Approach to Track Fetal Movement Using Multi-sensor Magnetocardiographic Recordings

Creative Commons License

Govindan R. B., Vairavan S., ULUŞAR Ü. D., Wilson J. D., Mckelvey S. S., Preissl H., ...More

ANNALS OF BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING, vol.39, no.3, pp.964-972, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 39 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10439-010-0231-z
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.964-972
  • Keywords: Center-of-gravity, Hilbert transform, Fetal magenetocardiogram, Fetal body movement, Ultrasound, HEART-RATE, INDICATOR
  • Akdeniz University Affiliated: Yes


Changes in fetal magnetocardiographic (fMCG) signals are indicators for fetal body movement. We propose a novel approach to reliably extract fetal body movements based on the field strength of the fMCG signal independent of its frequency. After attenuating the maternal MCG, we use a Hilbert transform approach to identify the R-wave. At each R-wave, we compute the center-of-gravity (cog) of the coordinate positions of MCG sensors, each weighted by the magnitude of the R-wave amplitude recorded at the corresponding sensor. We then define actogram as the distance between the cog computed at each R-wave and the average of the cog from all the R-waves in a 3-min duration. By applying a linear de-trending approach to the actogram we identify the fetal body movement and compare this with the synchronous occurrence of the acceleration in the fetal heart rate. Finally, we apply this approach to the fMCG recorded simultaneously with ultrasound from a single subject and show its improved performance over the QRS-amplitude based approach in the visually verified movements. This technique could be applied to transform the detection of fetal body movement into an objective measure of fetal health and enhance the predictive value of prevalent clinical testing for fetal wellbeing.