Developing Graph Convolutional Networks and Mutual Information for Arrhythmic Diagnosis Based on Multichannel ECG Signals

Bahare Andayeshgar, Fardin Abdali-Mohammadi, Majid Sepahvand, Alireza Daneshkhah, Afshin Almasi, Nader Salari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Cardiovascular diseases, like arrhythmia, as the leading causes of death in the world, can be automatically diagnosed using an electrocardiogram (ECG). The ECG-based diagnostic has notably resulted in reducing human errors. The main aim of this study is to increase the accuracy of arrhythmia diagnosis and classify various types of arrhythmias in individuals (suffering from cardiovascular diseases) using a novel graph convolutional network (GCN) benefitting from mutual information (MI) indices extracted from the ECG leads. In this research, for the first time, the relationships of 12 ECG leads measured using MI as an adjacency matrix were illustrated by the developed GCN and included in the ECG-based diagnostic method. Cross-validation methods were applied to select both training and testing groups. The proposed methodology was validated in practice by applying it to the large ECG database, recently published by Chapman University. The GCN-MI structure with 15 layers was selected as the best model for the selected database, which illustrates a very high accuracy in classifying different types of rhythms. The classification indicators of sensitivity, precision, specificity, and accuracy for classifying heart rhythm type, using GCN-MI, were computed as 98.45%, 97.89%, 99.85%, and 99.71%, respectively. The results of the present study and its comparison with other studies showed that considering the MI index to measure the relationship between cardiac leads has led to the improvement of GCN performance for detecting and classifying the type of arrhythmias, in comparison to the existing methods. For example, the above classification indicators for the GCN with the identity adjacency matrix (or GCN-Id) were reported to be 68.24%, 72.83%, 95.24%, and 92.68%, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10707
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number17
Early online date28 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


  • heart arrhythmia types
  • ECG-based diagnostic
  • graph convolutional networks
  • CNN
  • mutual information


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