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Heart Rate Monitoring System

Categories: HealthHeartTechnology



With the general progression in technology, abnormality these days can be picked up on by several medical sensors which also have features that enable them to be ‘smart’. These sensors pick up abnormalities by continuously analyzing individual patient activity. In this way, recognizing the right sensors is crucial. In the medical field these days, many patients are now involved in the collection and review of their report. However, various standards for wireless communication has allowed the sensors to move forward from the conventional forms such as the use of ECG machines for heart rate monitoring, therefore, requiring no need for active patient participation.

A heart rate monitoring system can be defined as a personal device which is used for monitoring that permits a person to estimate their heart rate in real time and/or to record the heart rate for later revision.

Wearable technology can be seen as smart electronic device and can be worn as an accessory, incorporated into clothing.

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This project will be incorporating a wrist worn wearable.

Therefore, a wearable heart rate monitoring system is a system to be worn and is remotely accessible by authorized persons.

This wearable for heart rate monitoring is incorporated for heart disease patients to constantly monitor their heart rate and also for at-risk high blood pressure patients as a make-shift means to monitor their stress level by using their heart rate. This saves time and cost of logging around an ECG machine, or visiting the doctor regularly.

The wearable is Smart because it communicates with another device, the other device being owned by the caregiver or doctor.

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Results from the heart rate monitoring wearable will be sent automatically to the Internet of Things platform accessed by the care giver or doctor. This log of information can be used for later study and to determine if the patient is doing the needful in terms of their health condition.

However, heart rate measures are very individual, regardless of being a heart disease patient and should not be compared between people. Health specialists recommend a means called ‘heart rate reserve’ to be used by individuals to calculate their target zone from their resting heart rate with the help of their doctor. This information is to be used as a reference point to when their heartrate is an indication of an attack. The device is to be designed in such a way that once this reference point is achieved a sort of notification or alert will be sent to the authorized doctor or caregiver.

A security measure is also incorporated in this smart wearable by the use of login, so as to ensure that unauthorized persons will not have access to the log of heart rate information, this is to maintain a personal doctor and patient confidentiality.


Healthy living has seen a worldwide resurgence as individuals place more an incentive on remaining active to live all the more satisfying, more beneficial and longer lives. Exercise endeavors are much improved when one can get feedback from their bodies on their heart rate zones, movements etc. (Jeukendrup and Van Diemen, 1998). Also, Gilman and Wells in 1993 proposed that monitoring one’s heart rate through the use of smart wearable devices provides more accuracy than self-reports of training intensity. The American College of Sports Medicine reports that heart rate monitoring has appeared to have resulted in general improvement in cardiorespiratory fitness during exercise (ACSM, 2011).

Consultations and hospital visits have proven to cost time and money, this project provides a way to save both by the use of Internet of Things and wearable technology to improve the lives of heart disease patients. Wearable devices are however, mostly utilized as a non-obtrusive approach to monitor physiological signals over extensive periods of time [1].

It can also be used by those prone to high stress level, to monitor their heart rate and ensure they do not engage in activities that cause stress.


Today, the main cause of death in sub-Saharan Africa in adults above the age 30 is cardiovascular disease. All around the world, 80 percent of the world’s death estimate from cardiovascular disease are borne from low and middle-income countries. One of the strongest causes is undiagnosed or in some cases misdiagnosed and untreated hypertension, which affects about one in every two Africans, the highest rate globally [2].

Most areas in Africa lack substantial healthcare facilities, this project is aimed at giving everybody a chance at good healthcare that is both affordable and quality. The project provides means of allowing patients of heart disease to live regular lives without having to be subjected to regular routine visits to the hospital.


The aim of this project is to develop a heart rate monitoring system to track the heart rate of patients prone to heart disease and high stress level using Internet of Things.


The objectives of this project are:

  1. To implement the use of optical heart rate sensors to monitor the heart rate of heart disease patients.
  2. To remotely store a confidential patient’s log on cloud for further study by health specialist.
  3. To apply the use of GSM module in sending immediate SMS as a form of notification to a healthcare specialist in the event of heart rate irregularity.


The proposed system has one sensor which is a heartbeat sensor. The project is based on Internet of Things technology and will incorporate a SIM800L module that will be used to send an SMS in time of an emergency. This project will be beneficial since the doctor can monitor patient health parameters just by logging in to the ThingsSpeak application.

The Heart beat Sensor will be attached to the wrist of the patient so that it can detect the pulse with ease. Through the use of Optical Heart Rate Monitoring (OHRM), light from an LED is made incident on the human skin at, in this case, wrist. When the light enters the skin, it is reflected from constituents like arteries, tissues, veins, etc. However, the light getting reflected from all segments other than the arteries is time-invariant and contributes just to a DC level. The time invariant (AC) light is the one reflected from the arterial blood. A photodiode is used to receive this reflected light and converts it to a current that can be used in circuitry. This form of signal is referred to as PPG (photoplethysmography) signal.

The diverse wavelengths of light from these optical emitters collaborate contrastingly with the blood moving through the wrist. At the point when that light refracts (or reflects) off streaming blood, another sensor in the wearable catches that data. That information would then be able to be processed, alongside motion data derived by the motion sensor, incorporated with special algorithm to create justifiable pulse readings. These pulse readings would then be converted into heart beat per minute (BPM) with the use of an Arduino.

The data will be sent to ThinksSpeak, an Internet of Things platform for device communications and notifications through the communication between the Arduino and a GSM module. The GSM module will connect the network of the router that will be provided in the code and will send the data of the sensor online. This data on the ThingSpeak will be shown in the form of a graph, also displaying the past readings too and can is accessible anywhere in the world over internet. The code also provides a procedure that is triggered by heart beat irregularity, the procedure being an immediate notification through SMS to the doctor.


The organization of the project is as follows:

Chapter 1: Introduction; This is a brief summary of what the project entails, the motivation, significance of the study, aim and objectives as well as the methodology used in the fulfilment of the project.

Chapter 2: Literature Review; provides an overview of academic and technical description on subsequent works about the project.

Chapter 3: Analysis and Design; this is the review of the project procedures description, how they interact which each other, system design and the actualization of the project.

Chapter 4: Implementation and Testing; this describes system requirements and how the project was tested and actualized.

Chapter 5: Summary, Recommendation and Conclusion; this closing Chapter will assess the whole project work, summarize the highlights of previous chapters, review the errors encountered as speculated in the data analysis section and recommend further investigations.

Cite this page

Heart Rate Monitoring System. (2019, Dec 03). Retrieved from

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