US 2198995 A
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April 30, 1940. F. GRAY 2,198,995
TRACTION APPLYING DEVICE FOR SPLINTS Filed Dec. 27, 1937 INYENTOR F 1 NK L. ErRAY ATTORNEY Patented Apr. 30, 1940 s PATENT OFFICE TRACTION APPLYING DEVICEFOR SPLINTS I Frank L. Gray, Bridgeport, Conn.
Application December 27,1937, Serial No. 181,852 5 Claims. (01. 128- 84) The present invention'relates to a traction device for splints, and is especially intended for use upon a legsplint of the so-called Thomas type. The Thomas splint, which is extensively used in first aid work, consists of an elongated l J-shaped frame having a ring secured at theends of the side bars, and which ring is adapted to. be passed over the leg so that it rests snugly against the b-uttock, the bars beingdisposed at each side of the leg and the transverse lower end of the splint being spaced below the foot. It has been the practice heretofore in order to obtain traction upon the leg to apply a bandage just above the ankle, the tie ends of the bandage being then knotted about the end'of the splint,- and thereupon by means o-fa stick inserted between these tie ends between the ankle bandage and the end of the splint twisting until consider able traction is applied to the leg. It is extremely important in leg fracture cases to manually apply traction to the leg as soon as possible to prevent injurious complications, and thereupon to avoid any contraction until a splint is provided and the traction is applied and maintained by permanent connections with the splint. With the above method considerable difficulty has been experienced in accomplishing this because of the necessity'of manually holding the leg, while applying thesplint and securing the ankle bandage and traction ties. It has in fact been practically essential to the proper application of the splint, bandages and ties to have at least two persons apply them, one person holding the leg in a manher to apply the traction and engage the splint with it, while the other person prepared and applied the ankle bandage and traction ties. It is an object of the present invention to "provide a' traction applying device whichwill form a permanent part of the splint, and by means of which it is possible to engage the splint with the leg whilemanually maintaining traction upon it, and thereupon support the ankle in a. supporting cradle which carries an ankle band,athe ankle band being so arrangedthatthe-person applying the traction to the legmay continue to do this with one hand while securing, theankle band with .his free hand, and then, after so securing the ankle band, ap-plywtraction with said free hand, by means of a traction strap connected between the ankle band and the end of the splint,
all the while maintaining manual traction with the one hand. In this way it is possible with the present device for one person to apply the splint, with greater facility and speed than has been heretofore possible, and with more comfort and safety to the patient and with less likelihood of'injurious complications due to contraction to the leg after it has first been extended.
It isa further object of the invention to provide such traction device which will be adjustable, so that the splint with the traction device maybe applied to different length legs, and further to provide such a device which'm'ay be used for either the right or left leg simply by inverting its position upon the splint, it being understood that the Thomas splint is. adapted for use upon the right or left leg and for this purpose has one side bar shorter than the other.
A further object is to provide a traction device of simple and inexpensive construction, and which maybe applied as an attachment to the present type of Thomas splint, or other splints of substantially the same construction, without the necessity of any alteration to the splint itself.
' While the invention is illustrated and described with reference to a leg fracture splint, it
will be understood that it may also be applied to an arm splint. I I I With the above and other objects in view, an
embodiment of the invention is shown in the accompanying. drawing, and this embodiment will be hereinafter more fully described with reference thereto, and the invention will be finally pointed out in the claims. I
In the drawing:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view of a Thomas splint showing the traction applying device according to the present invention applied thereto. V
Fig. 2 is a rear elevation of the traction apply ing device, the ankle band being shown in open position.
Fig. '3 is an end elevation as seen fromthe left'in Fig. 2.
' Fig. 4 is a bottom plan view.
Fig. 5 is a perspective view showing the splint applied to the left leg of a patient with the traction applying device secured to the leg and traction applied.
Similar reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout the several figures of the drawing.
Referring to the drawing the splint illustrate isa so-called Thomas splint, and consists of a U-shape frame having a short inner leg ill, a long outer leg I I, and a notched lower end portion [2, the side legs diverging slightly toward their 'upper'ends, and being rigidly connected at their .upper ends to a ring l3, which is preferably padded as shown and which is adaptedf'to be engaged over the leg torest firmly against the buttock. i
The traction applying device consists of an ankle band I l, preferably formed of a rectangular piece of leather, and to which is secured a pair of spaced supporting cradle straps l5 and H5 in the form of loops, these straps being disposed in parallel relation to the longitudinal edges of the band l4, and having their ends butted along the center line of said'band and secured by rivets ll arranged at each side of said butted ends. These straps l5 and it are adapted'to be slidably engaged over the side bars of the splint, as shown in Fig. 1, and form a longitudinally adjustable supporting cradle beneath the ankle band, with applied, as will hereinafter more fully appear.
The ankle band is preferably faced with a piece of cushioning material, as for instance a piece of sheepskin ill, the wool being exposed and the leather base being secured to the band M by stitching I9.
In the space between the bands l5 and Hi there is provided a strap 26 secured centrally to the band M by a rivet 2|, this strap being provided at one end with a friction buckle 22 the end of which is preferably disposed slightly inwardly of the end of the band It, and the other end of the strap being extended so that it may be engaged with the friction buckle to secure and tighten the band about the ankle. This buckle may be of any suitable type and as illustrated is provided with a spring pressed gripping and releasing lever 22a.
At each side of the ankle band l4 and substantially along the diametric plane of the band, when it is in its ankle embracing substantiallycylindrical form, there are secured the ends of a yoke strap 23 which is of sufiicient length to extend around the heel of the patient, the ends of this strap being carried over the strap 253 and being secured at each side of the strap 2!] by rivets 224, to thus provide retaining bands in- .loop 25 slidably engaged upon the yoke strap 23 so'that it is disposed in a vertical plane, while the loop 26 is disposed in a horizontal plane. The loop 26 has secured to it the end of a traction applying strap 21, this strap being carried through the loop 26 and secured by a rivet 28 contiguous to the loop 26, one end of the strap being then carried through the buckle 29 and folded back and riveted at 30 to secure the buckle. The other end of the strap is carried about the notched end 12 of the splint and engaged in the buckle, this buckle being preferably a friction type of buckle similar to the buckle 22, and which holds the strap at any point to which it is pulled, being releasable by means of a spring pressed releasing lever 29a.
' The method of applying the splint and traction device according to the invention is as follows:
Assuming that the left leg is fractured, the
splintis engaged with the short leg I?! inwardly and with the ankle band of the traction applying device open, as shown in. Fig. 1. The person applying the splint passes his hands through the ring l3 and grips the foot of the patient, the left hand grasping the heel and the right hand holding the foot upright, and then pulls the leg to apply traction. It is important that this initial manually applied traction be maintained until the splint is in place. While still holding the patients foot he manipulates the splint up the legfwhich may be done by first placing the end of the splint in front of one knee, or against the chest, or shoulder, or at a point where one foot can be employed to push it up the leg. It has beenfound that this operation can easily be "accomplished by one man while still holding the patients footand maintaining a firm pull on the leg, the foot as-above pointed out being held with the left hand grasping the heel and the right hand holding the foot upright. When the splint has been fully engaged, with the ring l3'resting firmly against the buttock the ankle is laid upon the open ankle band M, whereupon the supporting bands Send it support-the weight of the ankle as a cradle. At this point the person applying the splint, while still maintaining traction upon the leg with theleft hand, which is grasping the patients heel, removes his right hand from the foot and employs it to engage the end of the strap 2t! through the buckle 22, thereupon closing the ankle band about the leg slightly above the ankle, the strap being then tightened so that the band is firmly secured about the. ankle. This operation, as above pointed out, is accomplished while still maintaining traction upon the leg with the left hand. When the ankle band is thus secured the free right hand is then employed to apply traction by grasping the end of the strap 2'! and pulling upon it, whereupon the ankle band is pulled by means of the yoke strap 23, as shown in Fig. 5. At this point the traction is all taken by the splint,.and the person applying the splint may remove his left hand from the patientsfoot. It will be noted that in the tightened position of the device the yoke strap 23 firmly engages the sides of the patients heel and thus supports the foot upright so that there is no chance of its turning and With the trac thepatient from the scene of the accident to'the home or hospital, that'no complications will ensue, because of loosening of the band or loss of traction, due to slippage. As no particular skill is required in applying the ankle and securing'traction, such as has been necessary with the previous method of forming an ankle band from bandage, the device may he applied. by persons having very little practice, and with the as surance that the patient will not suffer either because of failure of the splint or lack of .skill on the part of the person applying the splint.
I have illustrated and described preferred and satisfactory embodiment of the invention, but it will beunderstood that changes may be made adapted to be secured to the base of saidsplint therein within the spirit and scope thereof as defined in the appended claims.
Having thus described my invention what I claim and desire to Secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A traction applying device, for a splint o1 the type consisting of a U-shaped frame com prising-spaced side bars and a transverse base to be disposed about a fractured limb and having an abutment portion at one end for engaging against a portion of the patients body, comprising cradle means having an intermediate supporting portion and end slide portions transversely aligned with said intermediate support:-
ing portion and slidably engaged over the side bars of said splint for sliding movement thereon, a limb embracing band member secured to said intermediate supporting portion of said cradle means, binding means secured to said band member adapted to enclose it about a limb, and traction means secured to said band member at each side of its connectionwith'said cradle means and adapted to be secured to the base of said splint to draw said cradle means and band toward said base.
2. A traction applying device for a splint of the type consisting of a U-shaped frame comprising spaced side bars and a transverse base to be disposed about a fractured limb and having an abutment portion at one end for engaging against a portion of the patients body, comprising cradle means in the form of a continuous loop having an intermediate supporting portion and end slide portions transversely aligned with said intermediate supporting portion and slidably engaged over the side bars of said splint for'sliding movement thereon, the. upper traverse of the loop directly overlying the lower traverse, a limb embracing band member secured to said intermediate supporting portion of said cradle, means, binding means secured to said band member'adapted to enclose it about a limb, and traction, means secured to said band member at each side of its connection with said cradle means and adapted to be secured to the base of said splint to draw said cradle means and band toward said base.
3. A traction applying device, for a splint of the type consisting of a U-shaped frame comprising spaced side bars and a transverse base to be disposed about a fractured limb and having-an abutment portion at one end for engaging against a portion of the patients body, comprising cradle plane of said band in its closed cylindrical form,
and a traction strap connected to said yoke strap a base.
4. A traction applying device, for a splint of the type consisting of a U-shaped frame comprising spaced side bars and a transverse base to be disposed about a fractured limb and having an abutment portion at one end for engaging against a portion of the patients body, comprising a pair of spaced loop straps constituting cradle-means adapted to be slidably engaged over the Side bars of said splint for sliding movement thereon and extending transversely between said sidebars to provide a Weight supporting cradle having its supporting center substantially transversely and longitudinally centrally of the points of sliding engagement of said cradle means with said side bars, a limb embracing band member of rectangular form secured to said cradle loop straps means having its center of gravity substantially transversely and longitudinally centrally between said points of sliding engagement with said side bar, a binding strap secured to said band member between said cradle loop straps adapted to enclose it about a limb, a traction yoke strap secured to said band'member at each side of its connection with said cradle loop straps substantially in the diametric plane of said band in its closed cylinof spaced loop straps constituting cradle means adapted to be slidably engaged over the side bars of said splint for sliding movement thereon and extending transversely between said side bars "to provide a weight supporting cradle having its supporting center substantially transversely and longitudinally centrally of the points of sliding engagement of said cradle means with said side bars, a limb embracing ban-d member of rectangular form secured to said cradle loop straps means having its center of gravity substantially transversely and longitudinally centrally between said points of sliding engagement with said side bars, a binding strap secured to said band member between said cradle loop straps adapted to enclose it about a limb, a traction yoke strap secured to said band member at each side of its connection with said cradle loop straps substantially in the diametric plane of said band in its closed cylindrical form and extending over and being secured at each side of said binding strap, and a traction strap connected, to said yoke strap adapted to be secured to thebase of said splint to draw said cradle means and band toward said base.
FRANK L. GRAY.