Time-Frequency Characterization of Tri-Axial Accelerometer Data for Fetal Movement Detection
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Monitoring fetal wellbeing is a significant problem in modern obstetrics. Clinicians have become increasingly aware of the link between fetal activity and its well-being. Using data acquired by accelerometry sensors, we use TFDs such as the spectrogram and modified B distribution (MBD) to characterize fetal movements in the time-frequency (TF) domain. This paper reports a fetal activity detection method based on the root-mean-square (RMS) of time series and evaluates its performance against real-time ultrasound imaging, taken as the gold standard. The evaluation showed better performance with the RMS-based detector as compared to maternal perception. The evaluation also showed that the detector performance is age-dependent and that fetal movement is characterized by different TF morphology. Time-frequency distributions (TFDs) with better resolution such as MBD are investigated for TF-based techniques for the detection of fetal movements.
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