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Automatic Extraction and Detection of Characteristic Movement Patterns in Children with ADHD Based on a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) and Acceleration Images

Telematics Engineering Department, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Av. Universidad, 30, 28911 Leganes, Spain
School of Health and Related Research, University of Sheffield, Regent Court, 30, Sheffield S1 4DA, UK
Centre for Sports Engineering Research, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield S10 2LW, UK
Ryegate Children’s Centre, Sheffield S10 5GA, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2018, 18(11), 3924;
Received: 3 October 2018 / Revised: 26 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 November 2018 / Published: 14 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wearable Sensors and Devices for Healthcare Applications)
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Attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, which is characterized by inattention, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviors. In particular, children have difficulty keeping still exhibiting increased fine and gross motor activity. This paper focuses on analyzing the data obtained from two tri-axial accelerometers (one on the wrist of the dominant arm and the other on the ankle of the dominant leg) worn during school hours by a group of 22 children (11 children with ADHD and 11 paired controls). Five of the 11 ADHD diagnosed children were not on medication during the study. The children were not explicitly instructed to perform any particular activity but followed a normal session at school alternating classes of little or moderate physical activity with intermediate breaks of more prominent physical activity. The tri-axial acceleration signals were converted into 2D acceleration images and a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) was trained to recognize the differences between non-medicated ADHD children and their paired controls. The results show that there were statistically significant differences in the way the two groups moved for the wrist accelerometer (t-test p-value <0.05). For the ankle accelerometer statistical significance was only achieved between data from the non-medicated children in the experimental group and the control group. Using a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) to automatically extract embedded acceleration patterns and provide an objective measure to help in the diagnosis of ADHD, an accuracy of 0.875 for the wrist sensor and an accuracy of 0.9375 for the ankle sensor was achieved. View Full-Text
Keywords: ADHD; tri-axial accelerometers; deep learning; convolutional neural networks (CNN) ADHD; tri-axial accelerometers; deep learning; convolutional neural networks (CNN)

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Muñoz-Organero, M.; Powell, L.; Heller, B.; Harpin, V.; Parker, J. Automatic Extraction and Detection of Characteristic Movement Patterns in Children with ADHD Based on a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) and Acceleration Images. Sensors 2018, 18, 3924.

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