Fetal monitoring is a routine procedure to obtain a record of physiologic functions during pregnancy and labor. It is required to determine fetal heart frequency accurately. There are various types of fetal heart rate(FHR) determination and the most frequently applied method is transabdominal Doppler ultrasound. However, in the case of weak or noise corrupted Doppler ultrasound signals, conventional peak detections and the autocorrelation function method have many difficulties to determine FHR precisely. Also the autocorrelation function is effected by threshold level and window size. To solve these problems, the high resolution pitch determination algorinthm is introduced to detect FHR from Doppler ultrasound signals. This scheme digitally processes Doppler ultrasound signal for digital rectification, envelope detection, decimation and correlation calculation of two interconnected segments and then FHR is determined by its maximal value. Even in the case of a greatly smeared noise signal, this algorithm is able to search FHR more accurately than autocorrelation function by means of compensating FHR with a constant correlation threshold. This algorithm is simulated by 386-MATLAB on PC 486/DX and verified that it is superior to the autocorrelation function method.
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