Comparison of non-invasive electrohysterographic recording techniques for monitoring uterine dynamics

Autores UPV
Revista Medical Engineering & Physics


Non-invasive recording of uterine myoelectric activity (electrohysterogram, EHG) could provide an alternative to monitoring uterine dynamics by systems based on tocodynamometer (TOCO). Laplacian recording of bioelectric signals has been shown to give better spatial resolution and less interference than mono and bipolar surface recordings. The aim of this work was to study the signal quality obtaines from monopolar, bipolar and Laplacian techniques in EHG recordings, as well as to assess their ability to detect uterine contractions. Twenty-two recording sessions were carried out on singleton pregnant women during the active phase of labour. In each session the following simultaneous recordings were obtained: internal uterine pressure (IUP), external tension of abdominal wall (TOCO) and EHG signals (5 monopolar and 4 bipolar recordings, 1 discrete aproximation to the Laplacian of the potential and 2 estimates of the Laplacian from two active annular electrodes). The results obtained show that EHG is able to detect a higher number of uterine contractions than TOCO. Laplacian recordings give improved signal quality over monopolar and bipolar techniques, reduce maternal cardiac interference and improve the signal-to-noise ratio. The optimal position for recording EHG was found to be the uterine median axis and the lower centre-right umbilical zone.