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Title: Imaging photoplethysmography : towards effective physiological measurements
Author: Sun, Yu
Awarding Body: Loughborough University
Current Institution: Loughborough University
Date of Award: 2011
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Since its conception decades ago, Photoplethysmography (PPG) the non-invasive opto-electronic technique that measures arterial pulsations in-vivo has proven its worth by achieving and maintaining its rank as a compulsory standard of patient monitoring. However successful, conventional contact monitoring mode is not suitable in certain clinical and biomedical situations, e.g., in the case of skin damage, or when unconstrained movement is required. With the advance of computer and photonics technologies, there has been a resurgence of interest in PPG and one potential route to overcome the abovementioned issues has been increasingly explored, i.e., imaging photoplethysmography (iPPG). The emerging field of iPPG offers some nascent opportunities in effective and comprehensive interpretation of the physiological phenomena, indicating a promising alternative to conventional PPG. Heart and respiration rate, perfusion mapping, and pulse rate variability have been accessed using iPPG. To effectively and remotely access physiological information through this emerging technique, a number of key issues are still to be addressed. The engineering issues of iPPG, particularly the influence of motion artefacts on signal quality, are addressed in this thesis, where an engineering model based on the revised Beer-Lambert law was developed and used to describe opto-physiological phenomena relevant to iPPG. An iPPG setup consisting of both hardware and software elements was developed to investigate its reliability and reproducibility in the context of effective remote physiological assessment. Specifically, a first study was conducted for the acquisition of vital physiological signs under various exercise conditions, i.e. resting, light and heavy cardiovascular exercise, in ten healthy subjects. The physiological parameters derived from the images captured by the iPPG system exhibited functional characteristics comparable to conventional contact PPG, i.e., maximum heart rate difference was <3 bpm and a significant (p < 0.05) correlation between both measurements were also revealed. Using a method for attenuation of motion artefacts, the heart rate and respiration rate information was successfully assessed from different anatomical locations even in high-intensity physical exercise situations. This study thereby leads to a new avenue for noncontact sensing of vital signs and remote physiological assessment, showing clear and promising applications in clinical triage and sports training. A second study was conducted to remotely assess pulse rate variability (PRV), which has been considered a valuable indicator of autonomic nervous system (ANS) status. The PRV information was obtained using the iPPG setup to appraise the ANS in ten normal subjects. The performance of the iPPG system in accessing PRV was evaluated via comparison with the readings from a contact PPG sensor. Strong correlation and good agreement between these two techniques verify the effectiveness of iPPG in the remote monitoring of PRV, thereby promoting iPPG as a potential alternative to the interpretation of physiological dynamics related to the ANS. The outcomes revealed in the thesis could present the trend of a robust non-contact technique for cardiovascular monitoring and evaluation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available