US 20030132128 A1
A container for a syringe is provided which comprises a container top secured to a container body wherein either the top or the body is secured to a ring. The ring is sized so that a conventional key chain or key ring can be passed through the ring.
1. A container for a syringe which comprises:
a hollow tube sized to house a syringe,
said hollow tube having a first open end with a first connection means,
a hollow top having a second open end with a second connection means,
said first connection means and said second connection means adapted to connect and disconnect from each other,
and a ring positioned on either said hollow tube or said hollow top,
said ring being sized to connect to a key ring.
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 This invention relates to a portable protective container for a syringe. More particularly,, this invention relates to a portable protective container for a syringe that can be housed on a key carrier such as a chain or ring.
 At the present time syringes containing a drug, such as epinephrine for treating a patient for an allergic reaction are available in a flexible protective housing. The syringe conventionally is an auto-injector providing an epinephrine injection for emergency intramuscular use. The syringe provides an emergency treatment for severe allergic reactions (Type I) to insect stings or bites, food, drugs and other allergies. Epinephrine, when given subcutaneously or intramuscularly has a rapid onset. The strong vasoconstrictor action of epinephrine through its effect on alpha adrenergic receptors acts quickly to counter vasodilation and increased vascular permeability which can lead to a loss of intravascular fluid volume and hypotension during anaphylactic reactions.
 It is necessary that the epinephrine be readily available in a temperature controlled environment and that the syringe provides protection against breakage. Currently users of the syringe conventionally store and transport them in handbags, backpacks, fanny packs, automobile glove compartments or the like. Since these storage choices position the syringe out of sight of the potential users, their position can be forgotten by the potential user or they can be placed in a temperature environment which degrades the drug. For example, makers of epinephrine-containing syringes recommend a storage temperature between about 15° C. and 30° C. These events of losing the syringe or placing it in a degrading temperature environment such as in an automobile at freezing or extremely high temperatures, can create a life threatening situation for those that depend upon the drug being viable in emergency situations.
 Once a syringe has been issued from a physician, the user or guardian of the user must determine a location for the syringe that is easily accessible for the user. Unfortunately, as the user relocates from home, school, work, restaurants, etc., the syringe sometimes is forgotten and left behind. If the user has an anaphylactic reaction due to an allergy, fatality can occur as quickly as 1-2 minutes, if the drug is not administered.
 Accordingly, it will be desirable to provide a means for storing a syringe containing a drug which is readily accessible, which is storable in a desired temperature environment and which is positioned so that its position can be readily sensed by sight or by touch.
 The present invention provides a storage container for a syringe which is formed of a rigid material, which can be opened by hand and which can be stored on a carrier for a key such as a key chain or a key ring. The container also can include a thermal insulating layer positioned either on the outside surface or on the inside surface of the container. A ring is positioned on an outside surface of the container. The ring is sized to accommodate a carrier for a key such as a ring or chain. The ring permits the container to be carried on the key carrier so that it can be positioned in a pocket or in a lock for a key positioned on the key carrier. Thus, the container is either within the sight of a potential user of the syringe or it touches the potential user while in the potential user's pocket. In either position, the syringe is readily available to the potential user and it is safe in a temperature environment that is controlled by the potential user.
FIG. 1 is a side view of the container of the invention.
FIG. 2 is a side view of an alternative container of this invention.
FIG. 3 is a partial view of a path or a container top sized to accommodate a key or a container body.
FIG. 4 is a side view of a ring that can be positioned on the container of this invention.
FIG. 5 is a partial side view of an alternative wall construction for the container of this invention.
 The container of this invention comprises a container body, a removable top that can be secured to the container body and a ring that is secured to or formed integrally with the body or top. The ring is sized to accommodate a conventional key carrier such as a chain or ring. The top is secured to the body in a manner which prevents premature detachment of the top form the container body such as with a screw connection or a key and key guide connection. In one embodiment, a second ring can be slideably mounted on the ring connected directly to the container. The second ring permits freedom of movement of the container while avoiding stress forces on the ring directly connected to the container.
 Referring to FIG. 1, the container of this invention 10 comprises a container body 12, a removable top 14 and a ring 16. The ring 16 includes an opening (hole) 18 sized to permit passage therethrough of a conventional key carrier such as a chain, ring or the like. The ring 16 can be fixed to the top 14 or pivotally mounted, such as on hinges, on the top 14. An alternative container of this invention is shown in FIG. 2 which includes a container body 20, a top 22 and a ring 24 fixedly mounted on the top 22. The ring 24 has an opening 26 through which a key chain or key ring can be passed. The ring 18 or ring 24 also can be positioned on the bottom surface 13 or 15 of container body 12 or 20.
 The body of the container is formed of a rigid material such as a metal including aluminum or steel or a rigid polymeric material such as high density polyethylene.
 The top 14 or 22 can be screwed onto the body 12 or 22 with a conventional screw connection. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 3, a key and key path connection can be utilized to connect the container top and container body. The key can be positioned either on the container top or the container body while the key path 28 can be positioned on the opposing top or body. The key path includes a path portion 30 that permits vertical movement of the key as depicted by arrow 32 and a rotational movement in path portion 34 as depicted by arrow 36. The screw connection or the key path connection prevents removal of the top from the body by a pulling force on the top as depicted by arrow 40 (FIG. 2.).
 Referring to FIG. 4, a second ring is shown comprising a conventional key ring 41 which includes three layers 42, 44 and 46. The layers 46 and 44 can be separated by hand from the layer 42 so that a hole in a key such as holes 18 or 26 can be positioned about layer 46 or 44 while the ring 41 is moved so that all three layers 42, 44 and 46 are positioned within hole 18 or hole 26. This ring 41 permits movement of the container 10 on the ring 41 while eliminating stress force on ring 16 or ring 24.
 As shown in FIG. 5, the body wall can be a composite wall comprising a rigid substrate 48 such as a metal and a thermally insulating layer 50 such as polystyrene foam. The insulating layer 50 can be positioned either on an inside surface or outside surface of rigid substrate 48.
 Because the container of this invention is designed to attach to a key ring, the user has their keys readily available in a location that is at room temperature. The body used to manufacture the container is durable enough to withstand most punctures or damages. Also, it will protect the syringe from extreme temperatures from outdoor use.
 Typically, the container of this invention is sized to be approximately 6¼ inches high and 1 inch in diameter. This allows the user to easily fit the syringe in the housing for easy insertion and release.
 Thus, in one aspect of this invention, there is provided a combination of the container described above and a syringe positioned within the container wherein the syringe includes a drug to be delivered by the syringe by injection.