Several adaptive filter structures are proposed for noise cancellation and arrhythmia detection. The adaptive filter essentially minimizes the mean-squared error between a primary input, which is the noisy ECG, and a reference input, which is either noise that is correlated in some way with the noise in the primary input or a signal that is correlated only with ECG in the primary input. Different filter structures are presented to eliminate the diverse forms of noise: baseline wander, 60 Hz power line interference, muscle noise, and motion artifact. An adaptive recurrent filter structure is proposed for acquiring the impulse response of the normal QRS complex. The primary input of the filter is the ECG signal to be analyzed, while the reference input is an impulse train coincident with the QRS complexes. This method is applied to several arrhythmia detection problems: detection of P-waves, premature ventricular complexes, and recognition of conduction block, atrial fibrillation, and paced rhythm.