|Publication number||US2195024 A|
|Publication date||Mar 26, 1940|
|Filing date||Jul 27, 1938|
|Priority date||Jul 27, 1938|
|Publication number||US 2195024 A, US 2195024A, US-A-2195024, US2195024 A, US2195024A|
|Inventors||Bullock David M|
|Original Assignee||Rawlings Mfg Company|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Referenced by (57), Classifications (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
March 26, 1940- D. M. BULLOCK KNEE BRACE Filed July 27, 1938 FIG].
INVENTOB Dav/0 M-BULLOG/f B) I I ATTOHNE PatentedMar. 2c, 1940 UNITED I stares 1 rareur OFFICE i KNEE BRACE David M. Bullock, Urbana, Ill., assignor to Rawl ings Manufacturing Company, St. Louis, Me, a
corporation of ll lissouri Application July 27, 1938, Serial No. 221,490
:5 Claims." (o me es) This invention relates to etinovel knee brace that is adapted to be used principally by athletes to protect an injured knee joint and cause the joint to function properly, without subjecting the 5 user to pain or disco mfiture." While the device is designed primarily for use an athlete who has a' so-calledfbad knee, it is well adapted for use as a protecting device .for a normal knee joint, inasmuch as it comprises a protecting memher that embraces and extends over the knee joint and its surrounding structure, and also a means that forms, in effect, an artificial tendon that produces proper reflexes in the users le and insures proper functioning'of the ec-acting v 1 parts of the knee joint if the knee joint is subjected to a shock or blow'when the device is in use.
The bonystructure of the knee'joint, being Shallow, the articulation of the femur and tibia is held firmly together by what is known as;
capsule ligaments and also by internal crucial ligaments. These ligaments add support and steadiness to the joint. Numerous tendons also pass down on the medial and lateral sidesof the joint and have their insertion wellbelow the knee joint. There is also encased in the anterior or patella ligament a part known aslthe patella or knee cap, which has its insertion on the tibia.
Between the bones is round what'is known as a semi-lunar cartilage, which is awasher-like pad of a very brittle nature;
Due to its peculiar construction, the knee joint and its surrounding structure are very easily injured. One form of injury that is common,
particularly among athletes, is over-extension of the knee joint, caused by a blow on either side of the'knee joint when the users foot is fixed or stationary and the users body is forced into a twisting position, resulting in straining or rup 40 turing of the capsule ligaments. Thechange in.
the condition of the capsule ligaments imposed considerable pressure upon the semi-lunar cartilage and the crucial ligaments, and if an injured knee joint is not mobilized for a proper '45 period of time sufficient to allow normal 'heal If this ing, it is liable to become elongated. occurs, there will be too much free movement of the free joint, with the result that the cartilage is apt to become ruptured. After the cartilage 0 has become ruptured or broken, it will never unite, and the only way the joint'can be corrected is by an operation. If v the cartilage is broken, the
bending of the knee is liable to dislodge the-carg tilage or force it outoi position between the 5.5 parts of the knee structure 'with which it co acts, and'when this occurs, the individual suffers great pain.
The main object of my invention is to provide a knee brace which is of such construction I and design. that when it is arranged in operative "5 position on the users leg', it will effectively support weakened ligaments and also maintain sufficient pressureonthe knee joint in the zone where the cartilages are located, to eliminate the possibility of the semiluner cartilage slipl0 ping or becoming displaced.
Another object is to provide a device, which, y
when applied to an injured knee joint, will in-'- sure the joint functioning properly,.and will per- 7 mit the user to walk, run, kneel, or arise, without 15 being subjected to 'pain or discomfiture.
Another object is'to'provide a'device, which, in'addition to having the desirable characteristics above described, is of such construction that it afiords adequate protection tolthe knee' proper 2 0 fand covers the bursa that are located in the 'front part of the knee proper, above and below the j oint.
' Another object is to provide. a knee brace of the kind above described,' that can be easily 25 modified or adjusted to vary the pressure exerted by same on the knee joint anclits' surrounding structure. I
such a way 'aszto maintain pressure at. all 40 times over the area'of the knee joint where the cartilages are located. Said means may be constructed in various ways without departing from the ,spirit of my invention, but in the preferred form of my invention herein illustrated it con- 4'5 sists of an elastic cord that exerts pressure on I the cmaeting parts of the. users' knee joint in a direction tending to securely hold the semi- I lunar cartilage between the parts with which it coeacts and also produce proper reflexes be 5 0 tween ,the femur and tibia, in the event the capsule ligaments and/ or the, crucial ligaments are weak or incapable of performing their normal function. "In'addition'to the means above reierr'edto, my improved knee brace also preferably comprises a protecting member constructed so as to embrace or cover the knee proper and the bursa that are located in the front part of the knee structure above and below the joint,
the said means and protecting member being combined in such a way that the device as an entirety is securely held in operative position on the users knee with the protecting .member my improved knee brace, although I prefer to construct the device in the particular manner herein illustrated, as I have found that such a device makes it possible for a person who has bad kneeto-play football, or basket ball, with perfect safety and comfort.
Figure l of the accompanying drawing is a front elevational view of my improvedknee brace,
arranged in operative position on the users leg.
Figure 2 is a side elevational View of said knee brace; and
Figure 3 is a rear elevational view of said knee brace.
In the drawing A designates any'type or kind of a means, which, when positioned upon the users leg, will exert pressure on the femur and tibia of the knee joint in a direction to assist or augment the action of the knee joint ligaments and maintain pressure at all times over the area of the knee structure where cartilages are located;
Preferably said means A consists of an elastic cord disposed so as to assist in the reflex actions of the users leg and maintain :the semi-lunar cartilage in proper position, even though the capsule ligaments and the crucial ligaments have been strained to such an extent as to produce what is commonly referred to as an over-extensionof-theknee joint. 'As previously stated, the particular form or construction of the means A is immaterial, so long as it is of such design that it will form, in effect, an artificial tendon means that maintains or tends to maintain the co-acting parts of the knee joint structure intheir proper positionsand cause or assist said parts to function properly when the user is walking, running, kneeling, or arising.
As shown in the drawing-the elasticcord A that constitutes the artificial tendon means =of my improved knee brace extends across'therear side of the lower portion of the users leg at a point below the knee (see Figures 2 and 3), and then leads upwardly and forwardly to a protecting member 13 that is positioned over the knee,
as shown moreclearly in Figures 1 and 2,-the;
elastic cord A extending upwardly over-theside portions of the protecting member B, and thence rearwardly to an anchoring device located'on the rear side of the users leg at a point above the knee. The cord A has sufficient tension to maintain the semi-lunar cartilage of the knee joint in properposition at all times, irrespective of the condition ofthe ligaments of the knee structure, and also exert a constant forward thrust on the lower. portion of the users leg, with the result that it assists in the proper" reflex actions of the leg. The elastic cord A, in. addition to acting as an artificial tendon means, also serves as a retaining means or holding means for the protecting member B that insures said member remaining in proper position on the users knee joint.
Usually, the protecting member B will be constructed in the form of a pad of such shape and size that it will extend laterally over the side portions of the knee, and also extend upwardly and downwardly from the knee joint, so as to cover the bursa that are located at the frontpart of the knee structure above and below the joint. I prefer to make said pad B from leather or some other suitable flexible material, and form an opening ac at the center of same, as shown in Figure 1, so as to allow free movement and sliding of thepatella or knee cap. The protecting member B is provided with loops l and 2 that serve .asguides for the elastic cord A, and the loops or guides 2 that are located at the center of the protecting member are arranged in slightly offset relationship with the guides or loops l, so as to insure that the central side portions of the protecting member -B will-be pressed inwardlyinto snug engagement with the sides of the knee joint structure, the central portion of said protecting member being of slightly greater width than the top and bottom portions of said member, as illustrated in Figures 1 and 2.
In order to facilitate proper installation of the two parts A and '3, above described, I prefer to equip my improved knee brace with an j elastic supporting member C of tubular form. in general outline that is adapted-'tobe drawn upwardly over the users legand arranged inapproximately the positionshown in tl1e,drawing,-said supporting member C being of suchshape and dimensions that it will snuglyembrace theportion of the users leg in the zone of the knee joint. The supporting member C has combined with same two pairs of .jointed metal braces disposedat the opposite sides of said-supporting member and-arranged so that they give support to the knee in general, but do not interfere with the natural movements of the users leg and knee joint. Usually, each of saidmetalbraceswill be-constructed from twopieces of steel or other suitable material 3 having-their inner ends joined together-by a hinge or pivot 4 and arranged inside of a leather casing 5 that is-sewed to the supporting memberC, as shown in Figure 2. Said jointed braces extend longitudinally of the supporting member C at the opposite sides of-same, and each of said braces is provided adjacent its upper and lower ends with loops or guides 6 through which the tension member or elastic cord A extends. Attached to the rear side of'the supporting member C adjacent the upper end of same is an anchoring device I of any preferred form or construction, that is used to secure the freeends of the elastic cord A. As previously stated, the cord A extends transversely acrossthe lower portion of the usersleg at apoint-below the knee cap, and inorder to prevent'said cord from cutting into the leg and causing discomfortto the user, I arrange a piece of leather or other suitable material 8 at the'rear side of the supporting member 0, adjacent the lower-end of same, 'so-as to form a bearing piece for the elastic cord A that ting-into the users leg.
To install my improved knee brace the-user draws the supporting member C upwardly over the leginto the position shown in Figure 2.
The protecting member B is then arranged over the knee cap, after which the elastic cord A is disposed, transversely across the rear side ofthe lower portion of the leg and then drawn :up-
wardly through the guides 6 at the lower end of the jointed metal side braces and the guides I through the guides 6 at the upper endsof the jointed side braces and then attached in any suitable way to the anchoring device 1 located at the rear side of the upper end of the supporting,
member C. In installing the device'the elastic cord A is drawn tightly enough or is placed under sufficient tension to insure that it will function in the way previously explained, and hold the protecting member B in snug engagement with and in proper position upon the knee joint. The free ends of the elasticcord' -A may either be passed through loops on the anchoring device 1 and then knotted, or the anchoring device may be equipped withholding devices "I? for the cord A, constructed in such a way as to facilitate the adjustment of said cord or the disconnection of same from, the anchoring device.
Having thus described my invention, what I 'claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is: 7
1. A knee brace, comprising a protecting member adapted to be mounted on the users knee and having provision for allowing free movement andsiiding of the knee cap, elastic strands disposed longitudinally of said protecting'member, and extending rearwardly from "the upper and lower ends of same, and means for maintaining said strands under, tension and anchoring them to the users leg at points above and below the knee.
2. A knee protecting device, comprising an elastic supporting member adapted to be mounted on the users leg in the zone of the knee joint, a protecting member positioned on said supportingmember and constructed so as to embrace the side portions of the users knee joint and protect the bursa above and below the joint when the device is in operative position, elastic strands extending longitudinally of said protecting mem ber i'n guides thereon and also extending rearwardly from the upper and lower ends of said protecting member, and means for holding said strands under tension and anchoring said strands to said elastic supporting member.
3. A knee protecting device, comprising a protecting member constructed so as to embrace the side portions of the users knee joint and protect the bursa above and below the joint, jointed braces arranged at opposite sides of the knee and disposed longitudinally of the users leg, and elastic strands extending longitudinally of said protecting member in guides thereon and also extending rearwardly from said protecting member through guides in the end portions of said jointed braces. v
4. A knee protecting device of the kind described in claim 3, in which said strands are joined together at their lower ends by a portion which extends transversely across the rear side of the users leg at a point below the knee joint, when the device is arranged in operative position on the users leg the upper ends of said strands being adapted to be attached to anchoringdevices located adjacent the rear side of the users,
leg above the knee joint. I
5. A knee protecting device, comprising an elastic supporting member adapted to be mounted on the users leg in the zone of the knee joint,
' jointed side braces combined with said supporting member and arranged so that when said supporting member is in operative position, said braces-are located at the opposite sides of the users knee joint, a protecting member positioned at the front side of said supporting member, and constructed so as to embrace the side portions of the users knee joint and protect the bursa above and below the joint, an elastic cord extending across the rear side of said supporting member at a point below the users knee joint and comprising extensions or strands which lead forwardly from the lower ends'of said jointed braces, thence upwardly through guides on said protecting member and thence rearwardly through guides on the. upper end portions of said braces, and anchoring devices on said supporting member located at the rear of said side braces for securing the free ends of said strands.
DAVID M. BULLOCK.
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