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Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 69;

Estimation of Mental Distress from Photoplethysmography

Instituto de Tecnologías Audiovisuales, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 16071 Cuenca, Spain
Instituto de Investigación en Informática, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 02071 Albacete, Spain
Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Salud Mental (CIBERSAM), 28029 Madrid, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 November 2017 / Revised: 20 December 2017 / Accepted: 3 January 2018 / Published: 5 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Cognitive and Affective Computing)
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This paper introduces the design of a new wearable photoplethysmography (PPG) sensor and its assessment for mental distress estimation. In our design, a PPG sensor obtains blood volume information by means of an optical plethysmogram technique. A number of temporal, morphological and frequency markers are computed using time intervals between adjacent normal cardiac cycles to characterize pulse rate variability (PRV). In order to test the efficiency of the developed wearable for classifying distress versus calmness, the well-known International Affective Picture System has been used to induce different levels of arousal in forty-five healthy participants. The obtained results have shown that temporal features present a single discriminant power between emotional states of calm and stress, ranging from 67 to 72%. Moreover, a discriminant tree-based model is used to assess the possible underlying relationship among parameters. In this case, the combination of temporal parameters reaches 82.35% accuracy. Considering the low difficulty of metrics and methods used in this work, the algorithms are prepared to be embedded into a micro-controller device to work in real-time and in a long-term fashion. View Full-Text
Keywords: distress estimation; wearable; heart rate variability; photoplethysmography distress estimation; wearable; heart rate variability; photoplethysmography

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Zangróniz, R.; Martínez-Rodrigo, A.; López, M.T.; Pastor, J.M.; Fernández-Caballero, A. Estimation of Mental Distress from Photoplethysmography. Appl. Sci. 2018, 8, 69.

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