Smart monitoring systems for alert generation during anaesthesia
Man has a limited ability to accurately and continuously analyse large amounts of data. Observers are typically required to monitor displays over extended periods and to execute overt detection responses to the appearance of low probability critical signals. The signals are usually clearly perceivable when observers are alerted to them, but they can be missed in the operating environment. The challenge is to develop a computer application that will accumulate information on a variable, or several variables, over time and identify when the trend in observations has changed. In recent years, there has been a rapid growth in patient monitoring and medical data analysis using decision support systems, smart alarm monitoring systems, expert systems and many other computer aided protocols. The expert systems have the potential to improve clinician performance by accurately executing repetitive tasks, to which humans are ill-suited. Anaesthetists working in the operating theatre are responsible for carrying out a multitude of tasks which requires constant vigilance and thus a need for a smart decision support system has arisen. The decision support tools capable of detecting pathological events can enhance the anaesthetist’s performance by providing alternative diagnostic information. The main goal of this research was to develop a clinically useful diagnostic alarm system using two different techniques for monitoring a pathological event during anaesthesia. Several techniques including fuzzy logic, artificial neural networks, control and monitoring techniques were explored. Firstly, an industrial monitoring system called Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software is used and implemented in the form of a prototype system called SCADA monitoring system (SMS). The output of the system in detecting hypovolaemia was classified into three levels; mild, moderate and severe using SCADA’s InTouch software. In addition, a new GUI display was developed for direct interaction with the anaesthetists. Secondly, a fuzzy logic monitoring system (FLMS) was developed using the fuzzy logic technique. New diagnostic rules and membership functions (MF) were developed using MATLAB. In addition, fuzzy inference system FIS, adaptive neuro fuzzy inference system ANFIS and clustering techniques were explored for developing the FLMS’s diagnostic modules. The raw physiological patient data acquired from an S/5 monitor were converted to a readable format using the DOMonitor application. The data was filtered, preprocessed, and analysed for detecting anaesthesia related events like hypovolaemia. The accuracy of diagnoses generated by SMS and FLMS was validated by comparing their diagnostic information with the one provided by the anaesthetist for each patient. Kappa-analysis was used for measuring the level of agreement between the anaesthetist’s, SMS’s, and FLMS’s diagnoses. In offline analysis both systems were tested with data from 15 patients. The SMS and FLMS achieved an overall agreement level of 87 and 88 percent respectively. It implies substantial level of agreement between SMS or FLMS and the anaesthetists. These diagnostic alarm systems (SMS and FLMS) have shown that evidence-based expert diagnostic systems can diagnose hypovolaemia, with a substantial degree of accuracy, in anaesthetized patients and could be useful in providing decision support to anaesthetists.