US 2266706 A
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S. L. FOX ET AL NASAL ATOMIZING INHALER AND DROPPER Dec; 16, 1941;
' Filed Aug. 6, 1938 N mm e w/mw w w c m m 2 ,6 1 a 9 Patented Dec. 16, 1941 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE NASAL ATOllHZING INHALER AND DROPPER Stanley L. Fox and Charles C. Coghlan, Los Angeles, Calif.
Application August 6, 1938, Serial No. 223,496
Our present invention is particularly directed to a device intended to be made in small sizes to be readily carried by a patient for treatments of hay fever, colds and similar complaints. Our present invention relates to. a device particularly adapted as a nasal atomizing inhaler, in which the atomizing of the medicament is due directly to the inspiration through a nostril by the patient. A further feature of our invention is that the device makes .an excellent and controllable dropper for a medicament in that the drops may be accurately controlled and applied without danger of the patient receiving an overdose by asuccession of drops. V
Our invention may be considered as a further development of our patent applications for Nebulizing inhalator for medication, Ser. No. 143,511, filed May 19, 1937, and Combination bulb and inhalation nebulizer for medicaments, Ser. No. 187,888, filed January 31, 1938.
Our present invention as used for a nasal atomizing inhaler is intended for the use of medicaments which must be administered in afinely atomized form or vapor as distinguished from medicaments which may be administeredin large drops or a wet spray.. Therefore the nasal atomizer is designed and constructed whereby the inspiration through a nostril causes an immediate atomizing of the liquid medicament by an ejector action, the ejector action discharging from an ejector capillary tube of the instrument directly into the nostril. Our invention is par ticularly designed for various types of nasal medicated liquids in isotonic solution containing antiseptics and vaso-constricters such as epinephrin, ephedrine and like compounds. 7
The characteristics of the construction of our invention are that the instrument has a hollow case preferably elongated andoval in cross section, closed at the bottom. This forms an interior reservoir for the medicament and the closed end or base gives a support for an inner capillary tube extending from the bottom of the reservoir into a small discharge hole in a nostril-piece at the opposite end of the case. This capillary tube adjacent the bottom has openings or ducts leading to the bottom of the reservoir. The capillary duct preferably tapers towards the top and the discharge end of such tube is slightly below the outside surface of the nostril-piece at the discharge port oropening. V
Provision for the flow of air is through the medium of a small filler hole or air port in the side wall of the case, preferably slightly below the nostril-piece end but well above the usual level of the liquid. This may be controlled by the finger to admit the desired amount of air in proportion to the liquid sucked up by inspiration of the nostril. In order to provide a Water tight covering a rubber cap is provided which conforms in shape to thenostril-piece, has a thickened portion forming a closure for the discharge port, an annular skirt grips the upper part of the case of the instrument and a nub forms a seal at the air port. This air port has an additional function of forming an opening for filling the, reservoir with the liquid medica ment. The whole device is preferably made of a thermo-plastic material which is impervious to the action of the medication and permits a cheapness in manufacture. I
Our invention is illustrated in the accompanying drawing in which:
Fig. 1 is a side elevation such as taken in the direction of the arrow I ofFig. 5. v
Fig. 2 is a vertical section'such as taken on the line 2-2 of Fig. 5 in the direction of the arrows.
Fig. 3 is a vertical section through the removable rubber sealing cap. 7 r
Fig. 4 is an enlarged section of a portion of the cap and side wall showingthe sealing nub forming a closure for the air port.
Fig. 5 is a transverse section on the line 5-5 of Fig. 2 in the direction of the arrows.
. Fig. 6 is an enlarged diagrammatic section of a portion of Fig. 2 illustrating the discharge port and the dischargeend of the ejector tube.
In constructing our invention we manufacture and use a hollow upper body structure forming part of the case designated by the n'umeral II. This has an elongated wall l2 preferably oval in cross section asshown in Fig. 5 in whichfor sake of definition the flattened sides are designated l3 and the more rounded ends as I4. The walls are of constant thickness from end to end and terminateat a transverse shoulder l5 at the bottom. Atthe top there is an inwardly extending shoulder member. I6. This preferably has a transverse bottom surface l'l, the outer surface being somewhat sloped as indicated at I8. The nostril-piece 20 extends upwardly from this transverse member IB and is characterized by a right cylindrical wall 2|, this merging with the transverse portion. [6 and being preferably cylindrical both inside and outside. An exteriorly domed end 22 forms a gradual rounded or dome-like curve on the outside. connecting with the side wall 2|, the inside however has preferably a straight angular slope 23. This provides a stiffening structure and a slope for directing the flow of air as hereunder defined. A small diameter discharge port 24 is located in the center of the dome where the interior slope 23 approaches the outside surface 22, thus the edge of the port is quite thin. Such port is concentric with the axis of the nostril piece including the dome, the side wall 2| and also with the body structure ll. Below the shoulder piece Hi there is an intake air port 25 which is also preferably circular in shape.
In the manufacture the base and capillary tube assembly 30 has a base or bottom piece 3| with a peripheral rabetted section 32 which is fitted in the lower end of the wall l2, the end l bearing on the shoulder 33 of the notch. A relatively thick internal tube support 34 may be circular in contour or oval to conform to the shape of the walls l2 and leaves a flat surface 35 above the base or bottom member 3|. The capillary tube 36 is molded integral with the base and the portion 34. It is preferably slightly tapered on the outside surface as indicated at 31 but i preferably circular in cross section. The upper end has quite a decided taper as indicated at 38, the discharge end 39 being slightly below the outer surface of the dome 22 but located inside the opening 24, such opening being a discharge port. The capillary duct 49 is tapered and has a continuation in a duct 41 which leads to a recess 42 formed in the base. After the construction and fitting of the device this recess is closed by a plug 43. There are a plurality of lateral liquid ducts 44 leading from the bottom of the capillary duct leading to the reservoir and preferably but slightly above the bottom surface defined by 35 which forms the bottom of the reservoir 45.
In assembling the various parts forming our invention and as we prefer using thermo-plastic material, the base or bottom piece 3|, the wall structure l2 with the dome, the supply and discharge port can be molded, the molded bottom piece 3! with the capillary tube construction 36 is formed integral, the core afterwards being removed, then drilled holes to form the ducts 44 are made leading to the central bore 49, a plug such as 43 is then fitted in the recess, these parts are when assembled secured by a cement. This cement in setting and causing a bonding of the various parts in the respective joints makes substantially an integral construction which cannot be disconnected by an ordinary and usual procedure of use. Therefore there is no danger of the device coming apart when carried.
However as the instrument is intended to be carried by a person suffering for instance with hay fever it is advisable to provide a removable closure cap cover designated 50. This is preferably made of rubber and has an oval shaped skirt 5! with a bead 52 at the bottom and an inwardly extending nub 53. The bead at the side 54 opposite the nub is preferably larger than the opposite side as the nub is designed to fit in the air port and filler port 25 forming a closure shown in Fig. 4. Above the skirt there is an inwardly extending sloping shoulder 55 and an arch or dome 56, these conforming to the sloped shoulder member l6 and the dome 22. At the top of the dome there is a slight downward bulge 51 which presses against the discharge port 24. This makes substantially a leak tight cap or fitting when applied to the container as shown in Fig. 1 and it is not necessary that the device always be carried with the cap uppermost.
The manner of operation of our invention is substantially as follows: With the cap removed it is manifest that the liquid medicament may be filled into the reservoir through the air inlet opening 25 and when a sufiicient amount is filled in and the device is held vertical, the liquid will rise in the capillary tube 36, rising in the capillary duct 43 with certain types of liquid considerably above the level of the liquid in the main portion of the reservoir 45. The user presses the nostril-piece 20 against the nostril endeavoring to center the discharge port 24 for one of the nostrils. Should the other nostril be quite free for breathing this can be closed by the finger so that all of the air on inspiration or breathing must enter through the port 25 and be discharged into the nozzle at the discharge port 24. This action of the air flow develops an ejector discharge of the liquid medicament from the ejector tube 36 producing a fine atomized spray directly in the nostril and at the discharge end of the tube. On account of the discharge end of the tube being slightly below the upper surface of the dome 22 there is always a direct fiow of air over this discharge end of the capillary duct. It is manifest that by controlling the opening 25 by the finger a control may be obtained of the amount of air entering through the port 25 and hence of the relative flow of air and liquid discharged into the'nostril. It is obvious that after administering a treatment in one nostril the instrument may be used on the other.
In administering some types of medication it is desirable to do this by drops such as by a conventional dropper. Our device may also be used as a dropper for when it is inverted but with the port 25 above the liquid level or preferably closed by the finger, a droplet of the liquid is formed at the end of the capillary tube at the discharge port 24. This droplet may be regulated in size within limitation of the surface tension by control of the closure of the port 25, then by touching the drop to the surface to be treated such as part of the tongue or nose, a drop may be released by breaking the surface tension, thus drops of the liquid may be administered one at a time and the size of the drops regulated as above mentioned Within certain limitations. It will thus be seen that our invention forms not only a nasal atomizing inhaling device but also as a dropper for medicated liquids.
In using the device as a dropper when it is inverted and the port 25 is closed by the finger, a drop of liquid is formed at the discharge port 24 completely covering th same. As the capillary tube 36 has its discharge opening end 39 with the opening 40 substantially in the same plane and concentric with the discharge opening 24, there is thus only a small annular space for the formation of the drop. This is so small that the surface tension of the liquid is sufficient to maintain the drop in sealing contact with the entire discharge port 24 including the discharge opening 40 of the capillary tube 36. This action completely prevents air from entering through the port 24 or the capillary opening 41? to the interior of the case or housing. Hence when the drop of liquid is touched against the tongue or nose, the surface tension of the single drop is broken and this may be freed from the container. Hence, to control the discharge of the drops, that is, the rapidity of repeating the drops, it is only necessary to admit sufficient air through th port 25 held closed by the finger. A person is thus readily enabled to release the desired number of drops independent of breaking the surface tension of a particular drop by touching against the tongue or nose. The device therefore i an efficient dropper for medicated liquids.
Sufferers from hay fever, colds and similar ailments involving the nasal passages sometimes have both nostrils clogged and it then becomes necessary to drop in liquid sufficient to open the passages so that the device may then be used as an inhaling atomizer for more thorough medication throughout the entire naso-laryngeal tract.
As above mentioned, we prefer to make our instrument, particularly as to the outside walls of the container, of a specific thermo-plastic material which is resistent to chemical action of the medicaments used. Moreover, it is necessary to have the thermo-plastic material with a slight color tint of such a nature as to prevent the passage of ultra-violet light as the actinic light oxidizes the medicaments principally used in this type of atomizer.
The slight color tint should be such that a person may observe the amount of liquid in the container as this is especially desirable when using the device as a dropper.
As the case II is formed of thermo-plastic material with a relatively thin wall I2, this has quite a pronounced degree of flexibility as distinguished from a glass container, hence where a certain amount of accuracy and delicacy is require in using the device as a dropper, the air port 25 may be tightly closed by the finger, the device inserted and the wall 12 then compressed. This increases the pressure of the air inside the container, such pressure being operative to cause the discharge of a drop of liquid from the port 24, then on releasing the pressure on the wall l2, this again expands and the atmospheric pressure is sufficient to break the surface tension of the liquid at the discharge port 24 enabling the entrance of a volume of air sufficient tocompensate for the drop or drops of liquid ejected. Hence the thermo-plastic material enables the device to also function in a better manner as a liquid dropper.
Various changes may be made in the details of the construction without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.
1. A nasal atomizing inhaler including an enclosed reservoir structure with an air inlet opening, an end piece having a discharge opening, an ejector tube having its discharge end positioned in close proximity to said opening having its inlet end within the liquid in the reservoir, the end piece being constructed and adapted to engage the nostril of a user whereby the atomized jet of liquid from the ejector nozzle on inspiration through the nostril is discharged directly into the nostril.
2. A nasal atomizing inhaler including a body structure having side walls, an end piece somewhat dome-shaped and having a central discharge opening, the opposite end having a closure base, an ejector tube mounted on the base, the space between the hollow body structure, the ejector tube and the base forming a reservoir for a liquid medicament, there being one or more liquid ducts from the reservoir to the interior oi. the ejector tube, the ejector tube at the upper end having a discharge opening concentric with the opening in the end piece and positioned slightly below the outside surface thereof, the hollow body structure having an inlet air opening positioned below the end piece, such opening being operative for filling the reservoir with the liquid, the end piece being constructed and adapted to engage a human nostril whereby inspiration produces an air flow through the inlet opening and an ejector discharge of liquid from the ejector tube directly to the nostril.
3. A nasal atomizing inhaler as claimed in claim 2, the ejector tube and the base being formed integral, the ejector tube having a tapering capillary duct.
4. A nasal atomizing inhaler and dropper including in combination an enclosed reservoir structure with a nostril piece at one end with a discharge opening and a closed base at the oppcsite end, there being an air opening positioned in the walls of the reservoir structure below the nostril piece, an ejector tube, means for positioning said tube in a rigid manner in the reservoir structure, such tube having its inlet end positioned to be immersed in a liquid medicament in the reservoir and having its discharge end positioned in close proximity and concentric with the discharge opening of the nostril piece, the air opening being adapted to be closed by the finger whereby a drop of liquid may be formed. on tilting the inhaler at the end of the ejector tube and the discharge opening.
5. A nasal atomizing inhaler including an enclosed reservoir structure having an end piece shaped to form engaging surfaces with the human nostril, said end piece having a discharge opening, the reservoir structure having an air inlet opening positioned below the end piece, such opening being operative for filling the reservoir to the desired level with a liquid medicament, an ejector tube, means supporting said tube in the reservoir structure, such tube having an inlet end to be immersed in the liquid and a discharge end in close proximity to the discharge opening at the end piece whereby on inspiration through the nostril a flow of air is produced through the inlet opening upwardly through the end piece and the opening thereof thereby producing an ejector discharge of liquid from the ejector tube directly into the nostril, the ejector tube having its discharge end concentric with the discharge opening at the end piece, the inside surface of the end piece converging towards the discharge opening whereby the air fiow at the discharge is directed across the axis of the ejector tube.
6. A nasal atomizing inhaler including an enclosed reservoir structure having an end piece shaped to form engaging surfaces with the human nostril, said end piece having a discharge opening, the reservoir structure having an air inlet opening positioned below the end piece, such opening being operative for filling the reservoir to the desired level with a liquid medicament, an ejector tube, means supporting said tube in the reservoir structure, such tube having an inlet end to be immersed in the liquid and a discharge end in close proximity to the discharge opening at the end piece whereby on inspiration through the nostril a flow of air is produced through the inlet opening upwardly through the end piece and the opening thereof thereby producing an ejector discharge of liquid from the ejector tube directly into the nostril, an enclosure cap formed of resilient material and shaped to engage over the end piece and over the upper portions of the walls of the body structure, said cap having a nub to engage in the air opening.
STANLEY L. FOX. CHAS. C. COGl-ILAN.