Identification and quantification of electrocardiographic T-wave alternans
In the presence of pathologic states such as myocardial infarction and coronary artery disease, the electrocardiographic (ECG) repolarization segment (T wave) may change its morphology on every-other-beat basis. The occurrence of this phenomenon, known as T-wave alternans (TWA), is believed to be associated to an increased risk of ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. The heart-rate adapting match filter (AMF) was designed and implemented in our Laboratory to automatically identify TWA from Holter ECG recordings, particularly affected by motion artifacts, in addition to respiration modulation and electric noise. Compared to the other TWA identification techniques present in the literature, the AMF was found to be more robust to noise interferences and able to properly characterize both stationary as well as non-stationary TWA. The future identification of a TWA “normality” region, out of which abnormal, and thus potentially risky cases are expected to fall, will be useful to evaluate the prognostic value of TWA. Indeed, the possible use of TWA as a marker for sudden cardiac death is particularly appealing, since it will allow the identification and the treatment of patients at increased risk before they experience a major arrhythmic event.
Laboratory: BioEngineering Lab. at DII
Contact PersonLaura Burattini
  • Heart Research Follow-Up Program, Cardiology Division, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, NY, USA.
  • Cardiology Department, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands.
  • Institute for Biomedical Research, Kaunas University of Medicine, Kaunas, Lithuania.
    Athenaeum Project 2011: Evaluation of the cardiac repolarization heterogeneity
    People: Laura Burattini