Spectral analysis of the fetal electrocardiogram

Shimon Abboud*, Dror Sadeh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The spectral curves of the averaged fetal and maternal electrocardiograms as recorded from the abdomen were studied. The power spectrums were obtained using a technique which includes the subtraction of an averaged maternal ECG waveform using cross-correlation function and fast Fourier transform algorithm. The spectral curves of the averaged maternal and fetal ECG waveforms obtained from 21 pregnant women who had gestation periods of 32-41 weeks were studied. It was found that the poor signal to noise ratio, the high rate of coincidence between maternal and fetal ECGs and the similar frequency spectra of the signal and the noise components make an analysis of the abdominal ECG using conventional filtering technique rarely possible and an alternative method should be used.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-415
Number of pages7
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1989


  • Abdominal ECG
  • Cross-correlation
  • Fetal monitoring
  • Fourier transform
  • Power spectrum
  • Signal averaging


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