Entropy quantification algorithms are becoming a prominent tool for the physiological monitoring of individuals through the effective measurement of irregularity in biological signals. However, to ensure their effective adaptation in monitoring applications, the performance of these algorithms needs to be robust when analysing time-series containing missing and outlier samples, which are common occurrence in physiological monitoring setups such as wearable devices and intensive care units. This paper focuses on augmenting Dispersion Entropy (DisEn) by introducing novel variations of the algorithm for improved performance in such applications. The original algorithm and its variations are tested under different experimental setups that are replicated across heart rate interval, electroencephalogram, and respiratory impedance time-series. Our results indicate that the algorithmic variations of DisEn achieve considerable improvements in performance while our analysis signifies that, in consensus with previous research, outlier samples can have a major impact in the performance of entropy quantification algorithms. Consequently, the presented variations can aid the implementation of DisEn to physiological monitoring applications through the mitigation of the disruptive effect of missing and outlier samples.
Keywords: dispersion entropy; missing samples; nonlinear analysis; outlier samples; symbolic data analysis.