Entropy-based atrial fibrillation (AF) detectors have been applied for short-term electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis. However, existing methods suffer from several limitations. To enhance the performance of entropy-based AF detectors, we have developed a new entropy measure, named EntropyAF
, which includes the following improvements: (1) use of a ranged function rather than the Chebyshev function to define vector distance, (2) use of a fuzzy function to determine vector similarity, (3) replacement of the probability estimation with density estimation for entropy calculation, (4) use of a flexible distance threshold parameter, and (5) use of adjusted entropy results for the heart rate effect. EntropyAF
was trained using the MIT-BIH Atrial Fibrillation (AF) database, and tested on the clinical wearable long-term AF recordings. Three previous entropy-based AF detectors were used for comparison: sample entropy (SampEn), fuzzy measure entropy (FuzzyMEn) and coefficient of sample entropy (COSEn). For classifying AF and non-AF rhythms in the MIT-BIH AF database, EntropyAF
achieved the highest area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) values of 98.15% when using a 30-beat time window, which was higher than COSEn with AUC of 91.86%. SampEn and FuzzyMEn resulted in much lower AUCs of 74.68% and 79.24% respectively. For classifying AF and non-AF rhythms in the clinical wearable AF database, EntropyAF
also generated the largest values of Youden index (77.94%), sensitivity (92.77%), specificity (85.17%), accuracy (87.10%), positive predictivity (68.09%) and negative predictivity (97.18%). COSEn had the second-best accuracy of 78.63%, followed by an accuracy of 65.08% in FuzzyMEn and an accuracy of 59.91% in SampEn. The new proposed EntropyAF
also generated highest classification accuracy when using a 12-beat time window. In addition, the results from time cost analysis verified the efficiency of the new EntropyAF
. This study showed the better discrimination ability for identifying AF when using EntropyAF
method, indicating that it would be useful for the practical clinical wearable AF scanning.