A method for determining the pulse rate of a person. The method of the present invention is implemented in two phases. The first phase involes the determination of pulse intervals and the second phase provides an indication of the pulse rate based on the data produced during the first phase. The first phase is implemented by an algorithm which produces a pulse distribution profile from an array of pulses obtained from an appropriate transducer. In the second phase of the measurement, the distribution is searched to locate the region of maximum density. The pulse rate within the maximally dense region are then averaged to determine pulse rate. The pulse rate detection method of the present invention eliminates a significant number of erroneous pulse signals before calculation of pulse rate, thus providing a more accurate indication of the true pulse rate. The processing algorithm used in the preferred embodiment is based on an integer distribution the measurement can be obtained with a minimum amount of system memory and processor time.
Bruce C. Mather; William C. Fox; Harry H. Peel; Dennis J. Wenzel