One of the important aspects to be considered in rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases is the patient’s activity capacity (or performance), defined as the ability to perform a task. Currently, it is assessed by physicians or health professionals mainly by means of a patient-reported questionnaire, sometimes combined with the therapist’s judgment on performance-based tasks. This work introduces an approach to assess the activity capacity at home in a more objective, yet interpretable way. It offers a pilot study on 28 patients suffering from axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA) to demonstrate its efficacy. Firstly, a protocol is introduced to recognize a limited set of six transition activities in the home environment using a single accelerometer. To this end, a hierarchical classifier with the rejection of non-informative activity segments has been developed drawing on both direct pattern recognition and statistical signal features. Secondly, the recognized activities should be assessed, similarly to the scoring performed by patients themselves. This is achieved through the interval coded scoring (ICS) system, a novel method to extract an interpretable scoring system from data. The activity recognition reaches an average accuracy of 93.5%; assessment is currently 64.3% accurate. These results indicate the potential of the approach; a next step should be its validation in a larger patient study.
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