Development of a Real Time Seizure Detection Algorithm for Neonates.

The doctors in Cork University Maternity Hospital have experience in studying brain waves in sick newborns. Babies may have unusual movements, be sick and may be at risk of seizures often called fits or convulsions. This study aimed to confirm whether a baby was having seizures or not, using a test called EEG (electroencephalogram). In addition, a test called NIRS (near infrared spectrometry) was used to determine if the oxygen supply to your baby’s brain was affected.

This study received funding from Wellcome Trust to develop a seizure detection algorithm.

The aims of this study were:
1. Use continuous video-EEG monitoring to detect electrographic seizures in preterm and term neonates in the NICU.
2. To monitor other physiological signals simultaneously [electrocardiogram (ECG), Blood pressure, Oxygen saturation etc where available] with NIRS, and determine their usefulness for neonatal seizure detection.
3. To assess the performance of a neonatal seizure detection algorithm using this new data
a) off-line at the bench-side and b) in real-time at the cot side.

The INFANT centre continues to store and analyse data from participants to the study as a consent declaration was obtained from the Health Research Consent Declaration Committee (HRCDC) in 2020 which permits the continued storage and processing specifically for the study and related research. The Health Research Regulation (HRR) is also adhered to.

Important secondary data analysis of the stored data from the study continues to be performed under the original objectives. In addition, anonymised data from this study was used to validate the NeuroBell software.

Should you wish to obtain more information regarding the continued storage of your data please contact:
If you would like more information about your rights (including the right to withdraw) please visit our Data Protection page.


Stevenson NJ, Clancy RR, Vanhatalo S, Rosén I, Rennie JM, Boylan GB. Interobserver agreement for neonatal seizure detection using multichannel EEG. Ann Clin Transl Neurol. 2015 Oct 1;2(11):1002-11. PMID: 26734654; PMCID: PMC4693620.