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BioelectromagnetismPrinciples and Applications of Bioelectric and Biomagnetic Fields$
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Jaakko Malmivuo and Robert Plonsey

Print publication date: 1995

Print ISBN-13: 9780195058239

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195058239.001.0001

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Distortion Factors in the ECG

Distortion Factors in the ECG

Chapter:
(p.313) Chapter 18 Distortion Factors in the ECG
Source:
Bioelectromagnetism
Author(s):

Jaakko Malmivuo

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195058239.003.0018

It has been observed that uncorrected lead systems evince a considerable amount of distortion affecting the quality of the ECG signal. In the corrected lead systems many of these factors are compensated for by various design methods. Distortion factors arise, generally, because the preconditions are not satisfied. For instance, the Frank system VCG signal will be undistorted provided that the sources in the heart can be well described as a single fixed-location dipole; the dipole is located at the position assumed by Frank; the thorax has the same shape as Frank's model; and the thorax is homogeneous. None of these assumptions are met clinically, and therefore, the VCG signal deviates from the ideal. In addition, there are errors due to the incorrect placement of the electrodes, poor electrode-skin contact, other sources of noise, and finally instrumentation error. This chapter discusses the character and magnitude of these inaccuracies.

Keywords:   lead systems, ECG signal, distortion, electrode placement, electrode-skin contact, instrumentation error

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