University of Oulu

Siirtola, P.; Koskimäki, H.; Mönttinen, H.; Röning, J. Using Sleep Time Data from Wearable Sensors for Early Detection of Migraine Attacks. Sensors 2018, 18, 1374.

Using sleep time data from wearable sensors for early detection of migraine attacks

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Author: Siirtola, Pekka1; Koskimäki, Heli1; Mönttinen, Henna1;
Organizations: 1Biomimetics and Intelligent Systems Group, University of Oulu, P.O. BOX 4500, Oulu FI-90014, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.4 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2018
Publish Date: 2018-09-25


The migraine is a chronic, incapacitating neurovascular disorder, characterized by attacks of severe headache and autonomic nervous system dysfunction. Among the working age population, the costs of migraine are 111 billion euros in Europe alone. The early detection of migraine attacks would reduce these costs, as it would shorten the migraine attack by enabling correct timing when taking preventive medication. In this article, whether it is possible to detect migraine attacks beforehand using wearable sensors is studied, and t preliminary results about how accurate the recognition can be are provided. The data for the study were collected from seven study subjects using a wrist-worn Empatica E4 sensor, which measures acceleration, galvanic skin response, blood volume pulse, heart rate and heart rate variability, and temperature. Only sleep time data were used in this study. A novel method to increase the number of training samples is introduced, and the results show that, using personal recognition models and quadratic discriminant analysis as a classifier, balanced accuracy for detecting attacks one night prior is over 84%. While this detection rate is high, the results also show that balance accuracy varies greatly between study subjects, which shows how complicated the problem actually is. However, at this point, the results are preliminary as the data set contains only seven study subjects, so these do not cover all migraine types. If the findings of this article can be confirmed in a larger population, it may potentially contribute to early diagnosis of migraine attacks.

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Series: Sensors
ISSN: 1424-8220
ISSN-E: 1424-8220
ISSN-L: 1424-8220
Volume: 18
Issue: 5
DOI: 10.3390/s18051374
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 217 Medical engineering
Funding: The authors would like to thank the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation and Infotech Oulu for funding this work.
Copyright information: © 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open accessarticle distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (