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Compressive Sensing for ECG Signals in the Presence of Electromyographic Noise

Luisa F. Polania, Rafael E. Carrillo , Manuel Blanco-Velasco and Kenneth E. Barner

Department Department

of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark, DE, 19711 of Electrical Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique F d rale de Lausanne, Laussane, Switzerland e e Dept. Teora de la Se al y Comunicaciones, Universidad de Alcal , Madrid, Spain n a with a bound on the sparsity level of s. B. Review of SS distributions A class of SS distributions can be characterized by their distribution having a characteristic function given by the exponential exp(it |t| ), where is the characteristic exponent restricted to the range (0 < 2), is the real-valued location parameter, is the dispersion of the distribution ( > 0) that determines the spread of the density around its location parameter. The characteristic exponent controls the heaviness of the distribution tails. Thus, SS random variables with small values are highly impulsive. An important characteristic of SS distributions (with < 2) is the lack of second-order moments. Instead, all moments of order p < are dened and are called fractional lowerorder moments (FLOMs). In particular, the FLOMs of X f (, = 0) are given by E{|X|p } = (C(p, ))p , 0 < p < where (C(p, ))p = expression for the dispersion of X,
p (1 ) cos( p)(1p) . 2

AbstractThis paper presents a compressive sensing based method to reconstruct electrocardiogram (ECG) signals in the presence of electromyographic (EMG) noise. The symmetric stable (SS) distribution is used to model the EMG interference and the proposed reconstruction algorithm is based on fractional lower-order moments to efciently deal with the large variance of the noise. The method is validated using real data from the MIT-BIH Noise Stress Test Database.

I. I NTRODUCTION Compressive Sensing (CS) [1] has been successfully applied to ECG signals [2], reducing the required number of samples to achieve an acceptable reconstruction for medical diagnosis. Furthermore, it has shown good results as an alternative for ECG compression in the context of wireless body sensor networks [3]. However, existing works in the area ignore the presence of real noise that severely affects the reconstruction. Of particular interest is the EMG noise whose spectral content considerably overlaps with that of the PQRST complex. A white Gaussian noise is usually used to model an EMG signal. The muscle noise shows frequently an impulsive behavior and it means that the Gaussian model may fail. As a better model tting alternative, the -stable distribution was introduced for ECG applications [4]. In this paper, I propose to address the reconstruction of an ECG signal contaminated with EMG noise by using CS. The noise is modeled with a SS distribution and the proposed reconstruction algorithm seeks a solution that minimizes the lp norm of the noise subject to a constraint on the l0 norm of the sparse representation of the ECG, thereby dening a feasible set that diminishes the effect of gross errors. II. BACKGROUND A. Review of Compressive Sensing Let x Rn be a signal that is either K-sparse or compressible in some orthogonal basis , then x can be well approximated by a linear combination of a small set of vectors


From (2), we get an (3)

X = (E{|X|p })1/p (C(p, ))1 III. ROBUST


A. Problem formulation The additive noise model of the acquired ECG signal is x = x0 + n, where n is the EMG noise and x0 is the original signal, represented by a linear superposition of K elements of an orthonormal wavelet basis, . If we consider linear random measurements as in the traditional CS literature, then y = x0 +r, with r = n. From the properties of SS distributions, if X f (X , 0) and Y f (Y , 0) are independent SS random variables, then cX f (|c|X , 0)(c = 0) and X + Y f ((X + Y )1/ , 0). Then, it follows that r is also SS distributed with the same as n. The dispersion parameter dened in (3) is the analogue of the variance for the SS distributions in the sense that it is a measure of the spread of the variable around the mean. From (3), we know that the dispersion depends linearly on the fractional lower-order moments. Therefore, minimizing its dispersion is equivalent to minimizing its pth FLOM, which leads to the following constrained optimization problem

from , i.e. x

si i , where K n. Let be an

mn sensing matrix, m < n. Compressive sensing deals with the recovery of x from undersampled linear measurements of the form y = x = s. CS states that the signal x can be recovered from M = O(Klog(n/K)) measurements if the matrix meets the restricted isometry property [1]. In practical scenarios with noise, the signal s can be recovered from y by solving the following optimization problem

min y s

2 2

s. t.


min y s

p p

s. t.


For choosing the value of p, we use the method proposed in [5], which is based on minimizing the standard deviation of a FLOM-based covariation estimator. Iterative reweighted least squares has been successfully applied to CS problems by replacing the lp norm by a weighted l2 norm [6]. The matrix of residual weights W is dened as a diagonal matrix. A particular choice for the residual weight is the one that results in minimizing the lp -norm of the residual, r = (y x). Choosing the ith diagonal element of W as Wi = |ri |(p2)/2 , the l2 -norm of the weighted residual becomes W r 2 = rT W 2 r = r p . Therefore, the problem 2 p in (4) can be reformulated as


Proposed method IHTPKS NMSE 10




400 500 600 700 Number of measurements


(a) Averaged NMSE over the records 117, 115, 100 and 119 as a function of the number of measurements.

min W (y s) n

2 2

s. t.


0.25 0.2 0.15 0.1 0.05 6 8 10 12 SNR (dB)

Proposed method IHTPKS

Given that p 2 will be negative, the weights Wi are undened whenever ri = 0. The approach for dealing with this issue is to add a small > 0 to the residual. B. Algorithm An iterative hard thresholding algorithm is used to solve the problem in (5). Let s(0) = 0 and use the recursion s(t+1) = HKL (st + g (t) ) (6)




(b) Averaged NMSE over the records 117, 115, 100 and 119 as a function of the SNR of the noisy input signal. Fig. 1. Comparison of the proposed method with IHT-PKS.

where HKL () is a non-linear operator that sets to zero all the elements but the L coefcients in the low-pass approximation wavelet subband together with the largest KL remaining elements, is a step size and g = s W (y s) 2 = 2 ()T W 2 (y s) is the negative gradient of the objective function. In this way, the thresholding operator ensures the selection of the subband that accumulates the majority of the energy of the signal at each iteration. Let t denotes the support of s(t) , assumed to be the correct support. The step size, , that minimizes W (y s) 2 at 2 each iteration is (t) =
(t) 2 2

signals, providing more accurate information for diagnosis. The algorithm is also compared with IHT-PKS when the SNR of the input signal is varied from 6 dB to 18 dB and the number of measurements is xed to m = 320. In Fig. 1(b), the proposed algorithm exhibits superior performance even when the acquired signals are highly contaminated with EMG noise. V. C ONCLUSIONS This paper offers an algorithm to reconstruct ECG signals contaminated by real EMG noise in a CS framework. This type of noise is a serious limitation in ambulatory ECG recording systems since each movement may result in large disturbance. Modeling the noise as -stable and introducing the lp norm in the reconstruction algorithm lead to superior recovery performance compared to l2 minimization algorithms. R EFERENCES
[1] E.J. Cand` s and M.B. Wakin, An introduction to compressive sampling, e Signal Processing Magazine, IEEE, vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 21 30, Mar. 2008. [2] L. F. Polania, R. E. Carrillo, M. Blanco-Velasco, and K. E. Barner, Compressed sensing based method for ecg compression, in Proc., IEEE ICASSP, Prague, Czech Republic, May 2011. [3] K. Kanoun, H. Mamaghanian, N. Khaled, and D. Atienza, A realtime compressed sensing-based personal electrocardiogram monitoring system, in DATE, march 2011, pp. 1 6. [4] T.P. Pander, A suppression of an impulsive noise in ecg signal processing, in IEMBS, sept. 2004, vol. 1, pp. 596 599. [5] G. Tzagkarakis, Bayesian Compressed Sensing using Alpha-Stable Distributions, Ph.D. thesis, University of Crete, Greece, 2009. [6] R. Chartrand and Wotao Yin, Iteratively reweighted algorithms for compressive sensing, in Proc., IEEE ICASSP, april 2008, pp. 3869 3872. [7] Rafael E. Carrillo, Luisa F. Polania, and Kenneth E. Barner, Iterative hard thresholding for compressed sensing with partially known support, in Proc., IEEE ICASSP, may 2011, pp. 4028 4031.

W (t) ()t gt

(t) 2 2

IV. E XPERIMENTAL R ESULTS Experiments are carried out over a 10-min long single-ECG lead from the MIT-BIH Arrhythmia Database. The EMG noise is taken from the MIT-BIH Noise Stress Test Database. All the results are averaged over the set of records 117, 100, 115 and 119. The signal is sampled and recovered using a sliding window of length n = 1024. Gaussian sensing matrices are employed and Daubechies db4 wavelets are used as the sparsifying transform. In the rst experiment, the performance of the proposed algorithm is compared with iterative hard thresholding with partially known support (IHT-PKS) [7]. Unlike the proposed algorithm, IHT-PKS is based on the l2 norm minimization of the residuals y s, but, the hard thresholding operator is the same as the one dened in Section III-B. The SNR of the noisy input signal is set to 10 dB while the number of samples is varied. The result of this experiment, using the normalized mean square error (NMSE) as performance measure, is shown in Fig. 1(a). The proposed method is preferred since it outperforms IHT-PKS in the reconstruction of the ECG