A multiplex network approach for the analysis of intracranial pressure and heart rate data in traumatic brain injured patients

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Background: We present a multiplex network model for the analysis of Intracranial Pressure (ICP) and Heart Rate (HR) behaviour after severe brain traumatic injuries in pediatric patients. The ICP monitoring is of vital importance for checking life threathening conditions, and understanding the behaviour of these parameters is crucial for a successful intervention of the clinician. Our own observations, exhibit cross-talks interaction events happening between HR and ICP, i.e. transients in which both the ICP and the HR showed an increase of 20% with respect to their baseline value in the window considered. We used a complex event processing methodology, to investigate the relationship between HR and ICP, after traumatic brain injuries (TBI). In particular our goal has been to analyse events of simultaneous increase by HR and ICP (i.e. cross-talks), modelling the two time series as a unique multiplex network system (Lacasa et al., Sci Rep 5:15508-15508, 2014). Methods and data: We used a complex network approach based on visibility graphs (Lacasa et al., Sci Rep 5:15508-15508, 2014) to model and study the behaviour of our system and to investigate how and if network topological measures can give information on the possible detection of crosstalks events taking place in the system. Each time series was converted as a layer in a multiplex network. We therefore studied the network structure, focusing on the behaviour of the two time series in the cross-talks events windows detected. We used a dataset of 27 TBI pediatric patients, admitted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) between August 2012 and December 2014. Results: Following a preliminary statistical exploration of the two time series of ICP and HR, we analysed the multiplex network proposed, focusing on two standard topological network metrics: the mutual interaction, and the average edge overlap (Lacasa et al., Sci Rep 5:15508-15508, 2014). We compared results obtained for these two indicators, considering windows in which a cross talks event between HR and ICP was detected with windows in which cross talks events were not present. The analysis of such metrics gave us interesting insights on the time series behaviour. More specifically we observed an increase in the value of the mutual interaction in the case of cross talk as compared to non cross talk. This seems to suggest that mutual interaction could be a potentially interesting “marker” for cross talks events.




Dimitri, G. M., Agrawal, S., Young, A., Donnelly, J., Liu, X., Smielewski, P., … Haubrich, C. (2017). A multiplex network approach for the analysis of intracranial pressure and heart rate data in traumatic brain injured patients. Applied Network Science, 2(1). https://doi.org/10.1007/s41109-017-0050-3

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