The European ST-T Database was produced as a result of the European Community's “Concerted Action on Ambulatory Monitoring” (project II.2.4, Ambulatory Monitoring, contract MR049; see references below), which was begun in 1985 with the goal of defining an ECG database as a reference for assessing the quality of ambulatory ECG analysis systems. Experts from twelve nations participated in this initial phase of the project. Given the existence of two standard arrhythmia databases [the MIT-BIH Arrhythmia Database and the AHA Database for Ventricular Arrhythmia Detectors], and the need to evaluate ischemia detectors, the participants agreed to concentrate on developing a standard for annotating ST segment and T-wave changes. The European ST-T database was thus designed to complement rather than to replicate the AHA and MIT-BIH databases.

Funding from the European Community supported development of the annotation protocol and of a small prototype database. The Concerted Action ended in 1986. Development of the database was continued by the joint efforts of the Institute of Clinical Physiology of the National Research Council (CNR) in Pisa (Italy) and the Thoraxcenter of Erasmus University in Rotterdam (Netherlands), with the voluntary participation of thirteen research groups from eight countries which provided ECG recordings and contributed to the demanding work of annotating them. The European Society of Cardiology agreed to sponsor the remainder of the project, providing both financial and scientific backing so as to enable completion of the database.

Creation of the Database has been supported with dedication and enthusiasm by many cardiologists, Holter technicians, laboratory assistants, and engineers at research institutions throughout the European Community and beyond. We gratefully acknowledge their contributions. In particular, we wish to thank:


  1. Marchesi C. The European Community Concerted Action on Ambulatory Monitoring. Journal of Med. Eng. and Techn. 10:131-134 (1986).
  2. Taddei A, Benassi A, Biagini A, Bongiorni MG, Contini C, Distante G, Landucci L, Mazzei MG, Pisani P, Roggero N, Varanini M, Marchesi C. ST-T change analysis in ECG ambulatory monitoring: a European standard for performance evaluation. Computers in Cardiology 14:63-68 (1987).