Blood Pressure Estimation using a Smartphone Camera

Smartphone applications provide an opportunity to monitor several physiological vitals regularly at home for indicative and preventive measurements without possessing dedicated clinical devices. A smartphone camera can be used to estimate several vitals, including heart rate and blood pressure, using photoplethysmograms (PPG). PPG is a simple and low-cost technique that can be used to detect blood volume changes in the microvascular bed of tissue making optical measurements at the skin surface.

There is a wide literature available on estimating systolic and diastolic blood pressure from PPG. These works perform well when applied on clean and noise-free PPG signals. However, PPG signals, captured using smartphones have a very low sampling rate, suffer from ambient lights and are affected by even little finger movement or change in finger pressure. This can largely affect the signal quality and make the signal not reliable enough for estimating blood pressure.

The aim of this project is to estimate blood pressure using PPG signal extracted from video captured using a smartphone camera. In part A of the project we will develop a technique for estimating blood pressure using noise removal and feature extraction in order to make the PPG signal more reliable. In a possible part B of this project, we will write an Android application that implements the algorithm developed in part A.

A relevant paper: Noise Cleaning and Gaussian Modeling of Smart Phone Photoplethysmogram to Improve Blood Pressure Estimation