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MIT-BIH Database and Software Catalog

Copyright © Massachusetts Institute of Technology 1996-2005. All rights reserved.
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We strongly encourage you to obtain our data and software via our NIH-funded web site, PhysioNet, and its mirrors located around the world. PhysioNet provides free access to all of the software and data previously available only on our CD-ROMs. In addition, PhysioNet provides free access to much larger collections of data and software, including contributions made by many other researchers worldwide as well as by our research group.

The Laboratory for Computational Physiology (LCP) at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology is a center for research into subjects such as cardiac arrhythmia detection; heart rate variability; compression, transmission, storage, and retrieval of physiologic signals; cardiovascular and pulmonary dynamics; and medical decision support for intensive care. What is now the LCP was originally a research group established in the mid-1970s within the MIT Biomedical Engineering Center for Clinical Instrumentation. Our group has had a continuous and fruitful collaboration with the Biomedical Engineering Research Laboratory at Boston's Beth Israel Hospital (which is now the Margret and H.A. Rey Laboratory for Nonlinear Dynamics in Medicine at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center), the source of much of the physiologic data used for our studies. This collaboration continues as the LCP and the Rey Laboratory jointly operate the NIH-sponsored Research Resource for Complex Physiologic Signals, with the participation of colleagues at Boston University and McGill University.

Our research since the mid-1970s has required us to create numerous collections of physiologic data, which we have made available to other researchers (on digital and analog tapes between 1980 and 1990, on CD-ROMs beginning in 1989, via FTP between 1993 and 1999, and on the Web since 1996). Making use of these physiologic databases requires specialized software that we have also made available to others.

All of our software reads and writes digitized signals and annotations using a highly portable, flexible, and efficient set of database interface functions (the WFDB library). We have made this library freely available, and it may be incorporated into your own software without significant restrictions.

Two current American National Standards, ANSI/AAMI EC38:1998 (Ambulatory electrocardiographs) and ANSI/AAMI EC57:1998 (Testing and reporting performance results of cardiac rhythm and ST segment measurement algorithms), specify the use of several of our databases and our software for deriving performance statistics when evaluating a variety of devices.

From the PhysioNet web site and its mirrors, you may download:

Much of the income needed for development of these databases and software, and for support of users, has come from sales of the databases on CD-ROM since 1989, and on tape between 1980 and 1989. We are grateful for the support given us by over 400 users of our databases between 1980 and 1999. Support from the National Center for Research Resources of the National Institutes of Health allows us to provide freely all of the data and software previously available from us on CD-ROMs only, and to reduce significantly the cost of our CD-ROMs to those who still need them. Please visit PhysioNet, the web site of the Research Resource for Complex Physiologic Signals, for updated and much larger selections of the materials described above.

Some of the books previously available through this site may now be obtained from the PhysioNet Bookstore. If there is sufficient interest, we may make CDs containing our software and databases available again through the PhysioNet Bookstore in the future. Keeping in mind that all of this material is available without cost from PhysioNet, please let us know if the option to purchase CDs would be of interest to you.