Devon Livingstone | Top 40 Under 40 2021

Ear, nose and throat surgeon Dr. Devon Livingstone has improved access to care through his company Alethea, which provides physicians with novel diagnostic devices and an e-consult platform.

Hair by Brenna Stevens, Hedkandi Salon; Makeup by Jaina-Brooke English, Artists Within. Photograph by Jared Sych.

Age: 33

Job title: Otolaryngologist, Neck Surgeon and Clinical Lecturer, University of Calgary Cumming School of Medicine; Chief Medical Officer, Alethea

Why Devon Livingstone is a 2021 Top 40 Under 40: Ear, nose and throat surgeon Dr. Devon Livingstone has improved access to care through his company Alethea, which provides physicians with novel diagnostic devices and an e-consult platform.

When he was training to become an ear, nose and throat (ENT) surgeon, Dr. Devon Livingstone grew frustrated with outdated communication systems in health care.

So Livingstone began to study machine learning. He took a year to complete a master’s degree in translational medicine, focusing on moving research out of the lab and into patient care. In 2019, he founded Alethea, a Calgary-based company that produces diagnostic medical devices powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and an e-consultation platform that connects family physicians and specialists. “It’s easy for me to make a visual diagnosis for certain conditions. So I became interested in how I can build an AI so that a family physician can have a specialist’s level of snap visual diagnosis in their pocket,” Livingstone explains.

Alethea is the first company in the world to use computer vision AI for ear disease. Its first device, a digital endoscope for ear assessments, is approved by Health Canada, and the AI component is under submission to the federal body. More products are in the pipeline, including AIs for skin, oral, ear and nasal diseases and voice disorders.

Currently, 85 family physicians in Alberta are enrolled in the e-consult platform and more than 5,000 patients have been treated using the digital tools.

Livingstone spends about four days a week in surgery or clinic and dedicates the rest of his time to Alethea. Surgery provides a mental break from the technology world, he says.

Having done outreach work in Tanzania and Ethiopia, Livingstone dreams of taking Alethea into global health settings. “There’s such an opportunity for these types of digital diagnostic tools in areas where they don’t even have a doctor, much less a specialist,” he says.

Thank Yous
“I would like to thank my friends and family.” – Devon Livingstone

 

Top 40 Under 40 2021

Elise Ahenkorah

Dan Allard

Jordan Balaban

Jared Blustein

Gil Carlos and Jeff Carlos

Jason Curry

Georgina De Caigny

Alkarim Devani

Allison Dunne

Chloe Dusser

Nils Daniel Forkert

Michelle Fournie

Brooke Garcia

S.Monty Ghosh

Zahra Goodarzi

Victoria Hodgkinson-Brechenmacher

Kelsi Hurlbut

Ọláwunmi (Wunmi) Idowu

Melissa Jay

Kay L

Sandra Aigbinode Lange

Devon Livingstone

Samantha Lowe

Sarah MacDonald

Karim Manji

Sarah McAllister

Alexander McGirr

Ashley Meller

Carmen Morin

Alicia Nahmad Vazquez

Charles Osuji

Melissa Roy

Maud Salvi

Sherri (Gursharan) Shergill

Sarah Sinclair

Holly Singer

Trevor Solway

Jason Weatherald

Elmien Wingert

Darby Lee Young

This article appears in the November 2021 issue of Avenue Calgary.

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