Sensor-Based Garments that Enable the Use of Bioimpedance Technology Towards PersonalizedHealthcare Monitoring
Sammanfattning: Functional garments for physiological sensing purposes have been utilized in several disciplinesi.e. sports, firefighting, military and medical. In most of the cases textile electrodes (Textrodes)embedded in the garment are employed to monitor vital signs and other physiologicalmeasurements. Electrical Bioimpedance (EBI) is a non-invasive and effective technology that canbe used for detection and supervision of different health conditions. In some specific applicationssuch as body composition assessment EBIS has shown encouraging results proving good degreeof effectiveness and reliability. In a similar way Impedance Cardiography (ICG) is anothermodality of EBI primarily concerned with the determination of Stroke Volume SV, indices ofcontractility, and other aspects of hemodynamics.EBI technology in the previously mentioned modalities can benefit from a integration with agarment; however, a successful implementation of EBI technology depends on the goodperformance of textile electrodes. The main weakness of Textrodes is a deficient skin-electrodeinterface which produces a high degree of sensitivity to signal disturbances. This sensitivity canbe reduced with a suitable selection of the electrode material and an intelligent and ergonomicgarment design that ensures an effective skin-electrode contact area.This research work studies the performance of textile electrodes and garments for EBIspectroscopy for Total Body Assessment and Transthoracic Electrical Bioimpedance (TEB) forcardio monitoring. Their performance is analyzed based on impedance spectra, estimation ofparameters, influence of electrode polarization impedance Zep and quality of the signals using asreference Ag/AgCl electrodes. The study includes the analysis of some characteristics of thetextile electrodes such as conductive material, skin-electrode contact area size and fabricconstruction.The results obtained in this research work present evidence that textile garments with a dry skinelectrodeinterface like the ones used in research produce reliable EBI measurements in bothmodalities: BIS for Total Body Assessment and TEB for Impedance Cardiography. Textiletechnology, if successfully integrated, may enable the utilization of EBI in both modalities andconsequently implementing wearable applications for home and personal health monitoring.
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