Multiway Sequential Hypothesis Testing for Tachyarrhythmia Discrimination

Nitish V. Thakor, Ananth Natarajan, Gordon F. Tomaselli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


A multiway sequential hypothesis testing (M-SHT) algorithm is proposed for simultaneous discrimination of cardiac tachyarrhythmias—supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) and ventricular tachycardia (VT)—from normal sinus rhythm (NSR). The M-SHT algorithm calculates a likelihood function from atrio-ventricular delay measurements, and compares this function with thresholds derived from specified error probabilities for the arrhythmias to be discriminated. Performance of this algorithm was evaluated on dual channel endocardial electrograms recorded in the cardiac electrophysiology laboratory. Two databases were developed, one for development of the algorithm and another for evaluation. The M-SHT algorithm accurately classified 26 out of 28 NSR (2 misclassified as SVT), 31 out of 31 cases of SVT, and 41 out of 43 VT (2 misclassified as NSR). The average length of time taken for classification of the three rhythms was: 3.6 s for NSR, 5.0 s for SVT, and 1.6 s for VT. Unique features of this algorithm are that acceptable error rates for each arrhythmia are independently specified and accuracy can be traded off for a faster detection time, and vice versa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)480-487
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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