Time-frequency and complexity analyses for differentiation of physiologic murmurs from heart murmurs caused by aortic stenosis in Boxers

Katja Höglund Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

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Christer H. G. Ahlstrom Department of Biomedical Engineering, Linköping University, 581 85 Linköping, Sweden
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Örebro University Hospital, 701 85 Örebro, Sweden

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Jens Häggström Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

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Per N. A. Ask Department of Biomedical Engineering, Linköping University, 581 85 Linköping, Sweden
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Örebro University Hospital, 701 85 Örebro, Sweden

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P. H. Peter Hult Department of Biomedical Engineering, Linköping University, 581 85 Linköping, Sweden
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Örebro University Hospital, 701 85 Örebro, Sweden

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Clarence Kvart Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

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Abstract

Objective—To investigate whether time-frequency and complexity analyses of heart murmurs can be used to differentiate physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by aortic stenosis (AS) in Boxers.

Animals—27 Boxers with murmurs.

Procedures—Dogs were evaluated via auscultation and echocardiography. Analyses of time-frequency properties (TFPs; ie, maximal murmur frequency and duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz) and correlation dimension (T2) of murmurs were performed on phonocardiographic sound data. Time-frequency property and T2 analyses of low-intensity murmurs in 16 dogs without AS were performed at 7 weeks and 12 months of age. Additionally, TFP and T2 analyses were performed on data obtained from 11 adult AS-affected dogs with murmurs.

Results—In dogs with low-intensity murmurs, TFP or T2 values at 7 weeks and 12 months did not differ significantly. For differentiation of physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS, duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz was useful and the combination assessment of duration of frequency > 200 Hz and T2 of the murmur had a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 82%. Maximal murmur frequency did not differentiate dogs with AS from those without AS.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that assessment of the duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz can be used to distinguish physiologic heart murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS in Boxers. Combination of this analysis with T2 analysis may be a useful complementary method for diagnostic assessment of cardiovascular function in dogs.

Abstract

Objective—To investigate whether time-frequency and complexity analyses of heart murmurs can be used to differentiate physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by aortic stenosis (AS) in Boxers.

Animals—27 Boxers with murmurs.

Procedures—Dogs were evaluated via auscultation and echocardiography. Analyses of time-frequency properties (TFPs; ie, maximal murmur frequency and duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz) and correlation dimension (T2) of murmurs were performed on phonocardiographic sound data. Time-frequency property and T2 analyses of low-intensity murmurs in 16 dogs without AS were performed at 7 weeks and 12 months of age. Additionally, TFP and T2 analyses were performed on data obtained from 11 adult AS-affected dogs with murmurs.

Results—In dogs with low-intensity murmurs, TFP or T2 values at 7 weeks and 12 months did not differ significantly. For differentiation of physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS, duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz was useful and the combination assessment of duration of frequency > 200 Hz and T2 of the murmur had a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 82%. Maximal murmur frequency did not differentiate dogs with AS from those without AS.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that assessment of the duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz can be used to distinguish physiologic heart murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS in Boxers. Combination of this analysis with T2 analysis may be a useful complementary method for diagnostic assessment of cardiovascular function in dogs.

Contributor Notes

Presented in part at the 16th European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine–Companion Animals Congress, Amsterdam, September 2006.

Supported by Agria Insurance Company's Research Foundation, Sweden; The Swedish Agency for Innovation Systems; the Health Research Council, Sweden; and the Swedish Research Council.

Address correspondence to Dr. Höglund.
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