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Publication numberUS20030051293 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/239,770
Publication dateMar 20, 2003
Filing dateSep 26, 2001
Priority dateSep 27, 2000
Also published asCA2390038A1, CN1180758C, CN1392792A, EP1320350A1, WO2002026188A1
Publication number10239770, 239770, US 2003/0051293 A1, US 2003/051293 A1, US 20030051293 A1, US 20030051293A1, US 2003051293 A1, US 2003051293A1, US-A1-20030051293, US-A1-2003051293, US2003/0051293A1, US2003/051293A1, US20030051293 A1, US20030051293A1, US2003051293 A1, US2003051293A1
InventorsPaul Chapman, Simon Collinge, Anthony Smith
Original AssigneeChapman Paul William, Collinge Simon Edward James, Smith Anthony George
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Flexible head support
US 20030051293 A1
Abstract
A head support apparatus (10) when positioning a person in a prone position comprises a base (199) slidable under a support surface. The base (11) has a central supporting post (12) supporting a frame (16) carrying a head support tray (18). A pressure reducing ring (23) is mounted on the head support tray (18) by straps (24). Contact points along the surface of the pressure reducing ring (23) are protected by a fitted pads (25) designed to improve comfort levels for the user. The pressure reducing ring (23) is clear and comprises a multi-channel air bladder to allow alternating inflating and deflation of the individual chambers to provide pressure relief. The visual and physical access to the users head and facial area is maintained at all times. The structure is self stabilising and can be used with most bed frames, or independently.
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Claims(8)
1. A head-support apparatus when positioning a person in a prone position comprising a base having an upstanding post, the post supporting a head support means, the head support means including a pressure reducing contact surface for supporting the head and face of a person.
2. A head support apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein the head support apparatus has a self stabilising base slidable under a support surface.
3. A head support apparatus as claimed in claims 1 or 2 wherein the post is adjustable to allow for multiple axis adjustment and additionally, quick release for ease of use.
4. A head support apparatus as claimed in claims 1, 2 or 3 wherein the head support means is adjustable laterally, to allow for positioning flexibility.
5. A head support apparatus as claimed in any preceding claim wherein the pressure reducing contact surface is provided by an inflatable bladder(s).
6. A head support apparatus as claimed in claim 5 wherein the inflatable bladder(s) is in the shape of a ring.
7. A head support apparatus as claimed in claim 5 or 6 wherein the bladder(s) is made of clear material.
8. A head support apparatus as claimed in claims 5 wherein the inflatable bladder(s) comprises chambers alternately inflatable and deflatable through predetermined cycle times.
Description

[0001] This invention relates to a fully flexible support assembly for the head, to assist with the non-invasive positioning requirements of patients in a clinical setting, in particular for prone positioning.

[0002] It is known to have specially shaped cushions/pillows constructed of foam or gel to support the head, such cushions are used primarily in the rehabilitation and physiotherapy fields. Also, prone positioning can be achieved on most types of support surface with the head turned to one side. Known inflatable systems include a head deflate function which improves access around the head by deflating the cells directly underneath the patient independently of the rest of the system. The head drops into the hole created and is then supported using standard pillows.

[0003] Head management systems include placing the patient's head between two cushioned side clamps to maintain spinal alignment during periods of rotation. Similar head support accessories exist in the physiotherapy and operating theatre environments for carrying out ENT, neurosurgical, oral and ophthalmological procedures.

[0004] The present invention seeks to make improvements.

[0005] It is an object of the present invention to facilitate effective nursing management of the head and face by optimising visual and physical access required for clinical interventions, to provide universal adjustment to support most patient anatomies and to provide an effective pressure reducing/relieving contact surface for the head and face.

[0006] Accordingly, the invention provides a head support apparatus when positioning a person in a prone position comprising a base having an upstanding post, the post supporting a head support means, the head support means including a pressure reducing contact surface for supporting a face of a person. Advantageously, the invention combines the anatomical positioning requirements of a head support for a person in a prone position with a pressure reducing/relieving support surface for the head and face.

[0007] Preferably, the head support means has a self stabilising base slidable under a support surface. More preferably, the post is adjustable to allow for multiple axis adjustment and additionally, quick release for ease of use and emergencies. Preferably, the head support means is adjustable laterally, to allow for positioning flexibility. Preferably, the pressure reducing contact surface is provided by an inflatable bladder(s) inflatable and deflatable through predetermined cycle times for pressure relieving. Preferably, the bladder(s) is in the shape of a ring and more preferably is made of clear material to allow nurses and carers to see the head resting upon the bladder.

[0008] Overall, the invention provides the detailed anatomical positioning requirements for a head support during proning to optimise visual and physical access to the head/facial area whilst minimising the risks of pressure damage to the patient.

[0009] An embodiment of the present invention is described below, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:

[0010]FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram of the head support installed on a support surface;

[0011]FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram of the head support system;

[0012]FIG. 3 is a side view of FIG. 2 showing the mounting arrangement of the head support on the base;

[0013]FIG. 4 is a back view of FIG. 3 showing the head support carriage mechanism; and

[0014]FIG. 5 is a plan view of the head support tray.

[0015] Referring to FIG. 1, the head support assembly 10 is used with the base 11 sliding under a support surface 1 to be used for proning. As shown in FIG. 2, the base 11 has a central supporting post 12 incorporating a slide 13, rack 14 and carriage stop 15. As shown in FIG. 4, a head support frame 16 is mounted onto the post by a head support carriage 21 engaging the sides of the slide 13 and being locked into position by the carriage stop 15. The carriage mechanism 21 allows for multiple axis adjustment of the frame 16 and delivers a safe method for quick release in the event of an emergency situation. The slide 13 delivers a smooth method of vertical adjustment.

[0016] A head support tray 18 slides onto the two tubes 17 of the head support frame 16 and is locked into position by locking mechanism 19 (see FIG. 3). A safety catch 20 prevents the head support tray from being pulled off the ends of the tubes 17. An inflatable pressure reducing ring 23 is mounted on the head support tray 18 by straps 24 with hook and loop fastening means to provide a static or alternating support surface for the user's head. Contact points along the surface of the pressure reducing ring 23 are protected by fitted pads 25 designed to improve comfort levels for the user. The pressure reducing ring 23 is clear and can comprise a multi-channel air bladder to allow for alternating inflation and deflation through specified cycle times of the individual chambers to provide pressure relief, if desired.

[0017] The tray 18 and the pressure reducing ring 23 are adjustable to accommodate differing widths and depths of head sizes (see FIG. 5).

[0018] The head support assembly can be used with any support surface where the head requires some form of artificial support. The structure is modular and easily dismantled for servicing and cleaning requirements.

[0019] The visual and physical access to the users head and facial area is maintained at all times to allow for the safe management of lines and tubing which may be associated with the users clinical condition.

[0020] The lightweight construction allows the head support assembly to be used independently for positioning requirements of the head in a range of specialist and non specialist fields. The structure is self stabilising and will work on most bed frames with the dedicated support system, but can also be removed for use independently.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7080420Sep 16, 2004Jul 25, 2006Scott DamronAdjustable head-support for therapy tables
US7424759Jun 9, 2006Sep 16, 2008Massage Warehouse, Inc.Adjustable head-support for therapy tables
Classifications
U.S. Classification5/638, 5/636
International ClassificationA47C20/02, A61G13/00, A61G7/07, A61G7/05, A61G13/12, A47C20/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47C20/026, A61G13/121, A61G13/12, A61M2025/1086, A61G2200/325, A61M2025/1075, A61G13/009, A61M2025/1047, A61G7/072, A61G13/1265, A61M2025/1072, A61M2025/1061
European ClassificationA61G7/07H, A61G13/12, A47C20/02J
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
May 10, 2007ASAssignment
Owner name: HUNTLEIGH TECHNOLOGY LIMITED, UNITED KINGDOM
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:HUNTLEIGH TECHNOLOGY PLC;REEL/FRAME:019265/0580
Effective date: 20070419
Sep 24, 2002ASAssignment
Owner name: HUNTLEIGH TECHNOLOGY, PLC, GREAT BRITAIN
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:CHAPMAN, PAUL WILLIAM;COLLINGE, SIMON EDWARD JAMES;SMITH, ANTHONY GEORGE;REEL/FRAME:013322/0565;SIGNING DATES FROM 20020814 TO 20020819