Blood Pressure Estimation Accoording to Photoplethysmographic Signal Steepness

  • Rolandas Gircys Kaunas University of Technology
  • Agnius Liutkevicius
  • Arunas Vrubliauskas
  • Egidijus Kazanavicius
Keywords: blood pressure, photoplethysmography, deformation pulse waveform, wearable device


Abstract. The purpose of this paper is to prove the assumption that there is a correlation between the systolic blood pressure and the photoplethysmographic signal steepness. A method for indirect systolic blood pressure estimation based on photoplethysmographic signal steepness is proposed in this paper.

Method: It is proved that based on Hooke’s law, the steepness of pressure and volume (diameter) of pulse waves differ by a constant. The coefficient for calculating arterial blood pressure when volume pulse wave steepness is known is presented in this paper. The Windkessel model is selected for the modeling. Experimental evaluation is based on veloergometrical trials. Volume pulse wave was obtained using a photoplethysmography device that is put on a finger. Blood pressure was measured using a semi-automatic OMRON blood pressure monitor.

Results: The simulation of an arterial system using the Windkessel model shows that the steepness of pressure and volume pulse waves correlate. Ten veloergometrical trials were performed during the experimental evaluation. A significant 0.855±0.025 (p < 0.001) correlation between the photoplethysmographic signal steepness and the systolic blood pressure was obtained. The calculated and measured blood pressure values vary no more than ±5mmHg.

Conclusions: The results demonstrate that the photoplethysmographic signal wavefront can be successfully applied in wearable devices that can be used for constant 24 hour registration of blood pressure for both home use and clinical practice.