Biomedical Engineering Letters

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 299–304 | Cite as

Novel tailoring algorithm for abrupt motion artifact removal in photoplethysmogram signals

  • Limeng Pu
  • Pedro J. Chacon
  • Hsiao-Chun Wu
  • Jin-Woo Choi
Original Article


Photoplethysmogram (PPG) signals are widely used for wearable electronic devices nowadays. The PPG signal is extremely sensitive to the motion artifacts (MAs) caused by the subject’s movement. The detection and removal of such MAs remains a difficult problem. Due to the complicated MA signal waveforms, none of the existing techniques can lead to satisfactory results. In this paper, a new framework to identify and tailor the abrupt MAs in PPG is proposed, which consists of feature extraction, change-point detection, and MA removal. In order to achieve the optimal performance, a data-dependent frame-size determination mechanism is employed. Experiments for the heart-beat-rate-measurement application have been conducted to demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed method, by a correct detection rate of MAs at 98% and the average heart-beat-rate tracking accuracy above 97%. On the other hand, this new framework maintains the original signal temporal structure unlike the spectrum-based approach, and it can be further applied for the calculation of blood oxygen level (SpO2).


Photoplethysmogram Motion artifact (MA) removal Short-time variance Automatic frame-size determination Heart rate (HR) 


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Copyright information

© Korean Society of Medical and Biological Engineering and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Limeng Pu
    • 1
  • Pedro J. Chacon
    • 1
  • Hsiao-Chun Wu
    • 1
  • Jin-Woo Choi
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Electrical Engineering and Computer ScienceLouisiana State UniversityBaton RougeUSA

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