Improvement of electrocardiographic diagnostic accuracy of left ventricular hypertrophy using a Machine Learning approach

Fernando De la Garza-Salazar, Maria Elena Romero-Ibarguengoitia, Elias Abraham Rodriguez-Diaz, Jose Ramón Azpiri-Lopez, Arnulfo González-Cantu

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11 Citas (Scopus)


The electrocardiogram (ECG) is the most common tool used to predict left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH). However, it is limited by its low accuracy (<60%) and sensitivity (30%). We set forth the hypothesis that the Machine Learning (ML) C5.0 algorithm could optimize the ECG in the prediction of LVH by echocardiography (Echo) while also establishing ECG-LVH phenotypes. We used Echo as the standard diagnostic tool to detect LVH and measured the ECG abnormalities found in Echo-LVH. We included 432 patients (power = 99%). Of these, 202 patients (46.7%) had Echo-LVH and 240 (55.6%) were males. We included a wide range of ventricular masses and Echo-LVH severities which were classified as mild (n = 77, 38.1%), moderate (n = 50, 24.7%) and severe (n = 75, 37.1%). Data was divided into a training/testing set (80%/20%) and we applied logistic regression analysis on the ECG measurements. The logistic regression model with the best ability to identify Echo-LVH was introduced into the C5.0 ML algorithm. We created multiple decision trees and selected the tree with the highest performance. The resultant five-level binary decision tree used only six predictive variables and had an accuracy of 71.4% (95%CI, 65.5-80.2), a sensitivity of 79.6%, specificity of 53%, positive predictive value of 66.6% and a negative predictive value of 69.3%. Internal validation reached a mean accuracy of 71.4% (64.4-78.5). Our results were reproduced in a second validation group and a similar diagnostic accuracy was obtained, 73.3% (95%CI, 65.5-80.2), sensitivity (81.6%), specificity (69.3%), positive predictive value (56.3%) and negative predictive value (88.6%). We calculated the Romhilt-Estes multilevel score and compared it to our model. The accuracy of the Romhilt-Estes system had an accuracy of 61.3% (CI95%, 56.5-65.9), a sensitivity of 23.2% and a specificity of 94.8% with similar results in the external validation group. In conclusion, the C5.0 ML algorithm surpassed the accuracy of current ECG criteria in the detection of Echo-LVH. Our new criteria hinge on ECG abnormalities that identify high-risk patients and provide some insight on electrogenesis in Echo-LVH.

Idioma originalEnglish
Número de artículoe0232657
Páginas (desde-hasta)e0232657
PublicaciónPLoS One
EstadoPublished - may 2020

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 De la Garza-Salazar et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioquímica, Genética y Biología Molecular General
  • Ciencias Agrícolas y Biológicas General
  • General


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