Design, implementation and evaluation of amicrocomputer-based portable arrhythmia monitor

N. V. Thakor, J. G. Webster, W. J. Tompkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The design of a portable, battery-operated microcomputer-based monitor for ambulatory ECG recording and analysis is described. Designed for real-time cardiac arrhythmia analysis, it is suitable for use on ambulator, patients for several weeks, and is about the size and weight of a Holter recorder. The device differs from a Holter recorder in that is does not store normal complexes but recognises and alarms on significant arrhythmias. It sotres 16 s of the arrhythmic event, which it can transmit by telephone to a central receiving station for immediate appraisal by a cardiologist. The monitor uses a CMOS microcomputer and has 2kbytes of program memory and 2kbytes of data memory. The arrhythmia monitor program recognises tachycardia, bradycardia, asystole, dropped beats, and PVCs. The alarm limits are physician programmable. The performance of the monitor was evaluated with standard annotated ECG tapes provided by MIT/BIH. This device should be useful for applications such as antiarrhythmic drug studies, for pacemaker and postsurgery evaluations, and for detecting premonitory as well as life-threatening arrhythmias.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)151-159
Number of pages9
JournalMedical & Biological Engineering & Computing
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 1984
Externally publishedYes


  • Alarm
  • Arrhythmia
  • ECG
  • Microcomputer
  • Monitor
  • Real-time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications


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