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Use of the Gini coefficient for analysis of heart rate variability in sick and healthy individuals

Grant number: 21/04472-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2021
Effective date (End): June 30, 2022
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Medicine - Medical Clinics
Principal Investigator:Moacir Fernandes de Godoy
Grantee:Beatriz Arid Rudnick
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina de São José do Rio Preto (FAMERP). Secretaria de Desenvolvimento Econômico (São Paulo - Estado). São José do Rio Preto , SP, Brazil


Heart Rate Variability (HRV) is an indirect method of evaluating the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS). The higher the HRV, the greater the capacity of the individual's cardiovascular system to adapt to the necessary daily variations and, therefore, better his health condition; and, the lower the HRV, the lower the adaptation capacity and, therefore, the worse the health condition. The Gini Coefficient is a statistical tool widely used in Economics to quantify the degree of variation of values belonging to a group and, thus, it could also be useful to measure HRV in both healthy and sick patients. Objective: To evaluate the Gini Coefficient representativeness in Heart Rate Variability analysis considering, by analogy, that the higher the Gini Coefficient (greater variation among values), the better the health status and, the lower the Gini Coefficient, the worse the health status. Methodology: We will re-analyze several time series of heartbeats, already collected from healthy and sick individuals (chronic renal disease, liver disease, ICU patients, transplanted patients, premature babies, elderly in nursing homes, bipolar disease patients) and pregnant women. These time series are part of the NUTECC (Transdisciplinary Nucleus for the Study of Chaos and Complexity) database. Expectation: it is expected that, contrary to its economic and social use, the Gini index will be lower (close to 0) in sick patients and, therefore, with low HRV; and higher (close to 1) in healthy patients and, therefore, with a high HRV and that it can be applicable in the differential characterization of the various degrees of disease severity. (AU)

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