An evaluation of a non-contact biomotion sensor with actimetry

Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2007;2007:2664-8. doi: 10.1109/IEMBS.2007.4352877.


Actimetry is a widely accepted technology for the diagnosis and monitoring of sleep disorders such as insomnia, circadian sleep/wake disturbance, and periodic leg movement. In this study we investigate a very sensitive non-contact biomotion sensor to measure actimetry and compare its performance to wrist-actimetry. A data corpus consisting of twenty subjects (ten normals, ten with sleep disorders) was collected in the unconstrained home environment with simultaneous non-contact sensor and ActiWatch actimetry recordings. The aggregated length of the data is 151 hours. The non-contact sensor signal was mapped to actimetry using 30 second epochs and the level of agreement with the ActiWatch actimetry determined. Across all twenty subjects, the sensitivity and specificity was 79% and 75% respectively. In addition, it was shown that the non-contact sensor can also measure breathing and breathing modulations. The results of this study indicate that the non-contact sensor may be a highly convenient alternative to wrist-actimetry as a diagnosis and screening tool for sleep studies. Furthermore, as the non-contact sensor measures breathing modulations, it can additionally be used to screen for respiratory disturbances in sleep caused by sleep apnea and COPD.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monitoring, Physiologic / instrumentation*
  • Sleep Wake Disorders*