PLoS One. 2022 Dec 27;17(12):e0279706. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0279706. eCollection 2022.
OBJECTIVE: Ischemic stroke (IS) with subsequent cerebrocardiac syndrome (CCS) has a poor prognosis. We aimed to investigate electrocardiogram (ECG) changes after IS with artificial intelligence (AI).
METHODS: We collected ECGs from a healthy population and patients with IS, and then analyzed participant demographics and ECG parameters to identify abnormal features in post-IS ECGs. Next, we trained the convolutional neural network (CNN), random forest (RF) and support vector machine (SVM) models to automatically detect the changes in the ECGs; Additionally, We compared the CNN scores of good prognosis (mRS ≤ 2) and poor prognosis (mRS > 2) to assess the prognostic value of CNN model. Finally, we used gradient class activation map (Grad-CAM) to localize the key abnormalities.
RESULTS: Among the 3506 ECGs of the IS patients, 2764 ECGs (78.84%) led to an abnormal diagnosis. Then we divided ECGs in the primary cohort into three groups, normal ECGs (N-Ns), abnormal ECGs after the first ischemic stroke (A-ISs), and normal ECGs after the first ischemic stroke (N-ISs). Basic demographic and ECG parameter analyses showed that heart rate, QT interval, and P-R interval were significantly different between 673 N-ISs and 3546 N-Ns (p < 0.05). The CNN has the best performance among the three models in distinguishing A-ISs and N-Ns (AUC: 0.88, 95%CI = 0.86-0.90). The prediction scores of the A-ISs and N-ISs obtained from the all three models are statistically different from the N-Ns (p < 0.001). Futhermore, the CNN scores of the two groups (mRS > 2 and mRS ≤ 2) were significantly different (p < 0.05). Finally, Grad-CAM revealed that the V4 lead may harbor the highest probability of abnormality.
CONCLUSION: Our study showed that a high proportion of post-IS ECGs harbored abnormal changes. Our CNN model can systematically assess anomalies in and prognosticate post-IS ECGs.