Spatiotemporal correlation analyses: a new procedure for standardisation of DC magnetocardiograms
There is a lack of standard methods for the analysis of magnetocardiograms (MCGs). MCG signals have a shape similar to the ECG (P wave, QRS complex, T wave). High-quality multichannel recordings can indicate even slight disturbances of de- and repolarisation. The purpose of our study was to apply a new approach in the analysis of signal-averaged DC-MCGs. DC-MCGs (31-channel) were recorded in 182 subjects: 110 patients after myocardial infarction and 72 controls. Spatiotemporal correlation analysis of the QRS complex and T wave patterns throughout the entire heart cycle was used to analyse homogeneity of de- and repolarisation. These plots were compared to standard ECG analyses (electrical axis, Q wave, ST deviation, T polarity and shape). Spatiotemporal correlation analyses seem to be applicable in assessing the course of electrical repolarisation with respect to homogeneity. MCG provided all diagnostic information contained in common ECG recordings at high significance levels. The ECG patterns were included in 5/8 of our parameters for electrical axis, 6/8 for Qwave, 7/8 for ST deviation and 5/8 for T-polarity based on two time series of correlation coefficients. We conclude that our spatiotemporal correlation approach provides a new tool for standardised analysis of cardiac mapping data such as MCG.