Open Access

Sensitivity study of a locally developed six electrode focused impedance method


The Focused Impedance Method (FIM) is a new technique of electrical bioimpedance measurements in the human body. The idea originated in Bangladesh and provides an opportunity for localized measurement of bioimpedance down to reasonable depths from the body surface using skin surface electrodes. This has potential applications for physiological studies of targeted organs in the body and in detecting or diagnosing diseases and disorders. FIM is based on the age-old Tetra-Polar Impedance Measurement (TPIM) but provides a few significant improvements.

Technology must be developed indigenously to obtain long-term benefits, particularly in Low and Medium Income countries (LMIC). This paper presents an experimental sensitivity study of the six-electrode version of the Focused Impedance method (FIM-6) with the circuit and phantom indigenously designed in Nepal. The work involved sensitivity studies of both FIM-6 and TPIM with the necessary circuit blocks developed through experimental validation. The sensitivity studies were performed on a simple 2D phantom with different electrode arrangements for FIM-6 and linear TPIM. A cylindrical object was placed at different positions for this study. The FIM-6 gave a high sensitivity in the central part, which remained almost constant within a small region that may be termed as the focused region. On the other hand, TPIM results fell off sharply away from the central point, making it unsuitable for practical measurements on target organs. Besides, there were areas with large negative sensitivities in TPIM, which were much smaller in FIM. The results obtained through this work clearly show the improvement offered by FIM over TPIM.