Journey to a Breakthrough: Helping Patients with Sleep Apnea Breathe Again

Event Date: Wed, 2017-03-22 17:00 to 18:00


Medical technology innovation is an exhilarating journey: taking on an opportunity to deliver ideas and technologies that will transform healthcare for generations to come.

In 2007, Dr. Alshaer embarked on a challenging quest to create a tool for diagnosing sleep apnea, a sleep disorder that affects about two million Canadians and can lead to major health problems including heart failure, strokes and high blood pressure. The new device had to satisfy some challenging criteria; it must be easy to use, low cost, and most importantly, accurate and reliable. A goal that several research and industrial groups have pursued for decades with nominal success. With his background in medicine and biomedical engineering along with the support he received, the goal was realized: a novel wireless acoustic device for the diagnosis of sleep apnea was born, the BresoDx®. To bring this technology from the lab to market, a start-up company was formed—BresoTec Inc. BresoDx® is now approved and sold as a medical device in Canada and Europe.

In this talk, Dr. Alshaer will present his inspiring journey thatspans the fields of medicine, medtech-based entrepreneurship and engineering, discuss the interaction between academia and business, and share the keys to success in the challenging process of developing nascent medical technologies.

Speaker: Dr. Hisham Alshaer, MD, PhD

Dr. Alshaer is a scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, UHN. He is dedicated to developing innovative medical instrumentation to reduce cost and improve access and reliability of medical services. He has led the development of a medical device, BresoDx—a portable, cordless device for home diagnosis of sleep apnea, which is currently available in the market. He co-received the ‘Inventor of the Year award 2016’, UHN for his role in inventing BresoDx. He was involved in founding the start-up BresoTec Inc. Besides sleep apnea, he is collaborating on projects for devising instrumentation for preventing pressure ulcers and COPD exacerbations.

He is a physician and a biomedical engineer. He obtained his medical degree and master in biomedical engineering from Istanbul, Turkey, and his PhD from the University of Toronto.


Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

2075 Bayview Avenue

Harrison Hall (EG-21)

Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

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