US 2434875 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 20, 1948. F. M. TURNBULL E'rAl. 2,434,375
JEITING DEVICE Filed Aug. 11, 1945 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 @L Emo! for TH! PVR/*1 Jan. 20, 1948. F. M. TURNBULL E'r A1.
JETTING DEVICE Filed Aug. 11, 1945 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 H TTOPNE K5.
Patented Jan. 20, 1948 JETTING DEVICE Frederick M Tnrnbull, Los Angeles, and William F. Hamilton, Altadena, Calif.; said Hamilton y assignor to said Turnbull Application August 11, 194s, serial No. 610,310 s claims. (ci.` 12s-25o) Our invention relates to liquid jetting devices, particularly to a compact, highly directional device for projecting a needle-like jet of liquid in a, direction axially of the device. -The invention will be described particularly with reference to its use as a nasal medicator for introducing metered quantities of a liquid medicament into the upper part of the nasal cavity to relieve the congestion of the nasal membranes caused by infections-allergy, hay-fever, etc.; mechanical irritations or .physical discomforts 'arising from dust, sudden change in altitude, etc.; or chemical irritati-ons caused by fumes, etc.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a device having several or all of the following features, to wit, a device which is (1) highly directional and self-directional to direct the medicament automatically to a position high in the nose to reach the seat of the usual nasal infections; (2) readily portable in the sense that it is small and can be easily carried in a pocket or handbag to be available for inconspicuous nasal treatmentlwhen needed; (3) precise and capable of delivering a measured dosage of medicaments such as the sulfas, penicillin, vasoconstrictors, or other drugs which should be used in limited doses; (4) sanitary in the sense that the applicator and the medicament can be kept free from conta-mination; (5) leak-proof to the extent that the device can be carried in any position without dan- 'ger of leakage, this being true to a large extent even during substantial changes in atmospheric pressure, as during airplane flights; (6) substantially unbreakable, all of the exposed portions of the device being preferably made of plastics; and (7) substantially non-clogging. The importance of these features and their absence from medication devices heretofore known will be apparent from inspection of conventional medicine droppers and atomizers.
To aid in the relieving of infections,often resulting in nasal congestions as in the common nose cold, it is essential to best results that the medicament reach and wet the nasal membranes high in the n-ose, to wit, in the upper sinus areas, these membranes being at positions disposed substantial distances from the nostril and reached through narrow channels diicult of access by ordinary methods,
'Ihe present invention contemplates nasal medicatlon by jetting a measured amount of medicament in a small and usually needle-like stream into the nasal passage to impinge upon the upper interior surfaces. The velocity of impingement is such that the stream breaks up to form a mistlike spray portion comprising a myriad of small droplets of large surface-to-v'olume ratio which drift from, or are propelled away from, the surface of impingement, migrating through the vexisting atmosphere to deposit upon and wet other portions of the nasal passage. Thus, the liquid medicament reaches the implngement surface as a jet but then sprays and trickles over the walls of the turbinates into the meati to reach the ostia and the orifice of the Eustachian tube. If the medicament has a vasoconstrictive action, the nasal passage is quickly clearedl or .decongested. It is an object of the invention to provide a novel device for nasal medication which jets a. small and usually needle-like stream of medicament into the nasal passage and which device is substantially self-directional in the sense that its use, even in non-professional hands,vwill automatically direct the stream of medicament toward the upper sinus areas. I
It is another object of the invention to provid a. novel applicator or head shaped to engage the anterior narls or nostril and shaped to limit insertion of the head into the nostril to avoid injury to the nasal tissues.
A further object of 'the invention is to associate such a head with a pumping mechanism and a liquid container in such way that relative movement between the head toward the container will actuate the pumping mechanism and produce the stream. v
Still a further object of the invention is to provide a device with such a head and which is operable to project the stream into the nostril, either by bodily movement of the container toward the nostril while the head fits therein or by finger-l It should be understood,however` that ,the invention is not limited exclusively tov the art of nasal medication. It finds wide usage by doctors, technicians, or artisans in the. projectionof a minute needle-like liquid iet for general uses and also to remote or difllcultly-accessible positions.
In general, it is an object of the invention to provide a liquid letting device in` which the axis of the jet is along the longitudinal axis of the device, whereby this longitudinal axis indicates or predetermines the direction of the jetted stream. The longitudinal axis of the device thus serves as an orienting axis, in contradstinction to those devices in which the direction of a stream or spray in alignment with the direction of relative movement. Other objects lie in a novel construction of Suche.'l head and a novel associationthereof with one of the pump elements.
It is also an object of the invention to provide r a compact :letting device which can be operated by one hand.
Further objects and advantages will be apparent to those skilled in,theart 'from the following description of an exemplary embodiment particularly applicable to nasal medication.
Referring to the drawings:
Fig. 1 is a vertical sectional view of the left nostril, taken just beyond the septum, showing diagrammatically some of the more important anatomical features of the nasal passage and showing the self-directional letting device of the invention in operative position;
Fig. 2 is a diagrammatic view illustrating the action taking place when a needle-like let strikes an inclined surface, and suggesting the mist-like dispersion as well as the paths of liquid flow along the surface;
Fig. 3 is a perspective view showing the preferred one-hand operation of the device;
Fig. 4 is e. perspective view showing an alternative method of operating the device;
Fig. 5 is a side view of the device with its protective cover attached, this cover being shown in section; l
- Fig. 6 is an enlarged vertical sectional view of the device showing the pump elements in the position occupied near the start of the jet-producing action;
Fig. 7 is a cross sectional view. taken as indicated by the line 1-1 of Fig. 51;
Fig. 8 is a cross sectional view, taken along the line 8 8 o`f Fig. 6;
Fig. 9 is a top view of the container with the pump elements removed; and
Fig. 10 is an enlarged vertical sectional view of an alternative valve construction.
Referring particularly to Fig. 1, the .letting device of the invention is indicated generally by the numeral I0. It provides an applicator or head il of a form to be later described and which is movable axially of a bottle or container l2 to actuate a pump i3 in a manner to send a needle-like stream of medicament il into the nasal passage. The head Il is adapted to contact the nostril or anterior naris I6, usually in a manner to seal the nasal passage against ingress or egress of air during the medicating operation.
In Fig. 1, the nasal passage is indicated generally by the numeral i1 and is bounded by the septum of the nose (not shown in Fig. 1), by the outer wall i8 of the nose, and by an upper wall i8 and a lower wall 20, the latter being formed by the hard and soft palates separating the nasal passage i1 from the mouth. The nasal passage i1 is shown as extending rearwardly to a passage 2i comprising the interior of the epipharynx.
Projecting into the nasal passage il are lower, middle, and upper turbinates 23, 2l, and 25, respectively. The lower turbinate 23 is separated from the lower wall by a space known as the lower meatus 26. The middle and upper turbinates are shown as overlapping slightly but provide therebetween a space opening on the nasal passage and known as the middle meatus 21. Similarly. a passage or space known as the upper meatus 2l opens on the main nasal passage and is positioned between the middle turbinate 2| and the upper turbinate 25. The meati 28, 21, and 28 are small, pocket-like spaces as distinct from broad, open-mouthedV depressions or passages, particularly when the nose is congested. yand resist entry of a medicament' approaching same as an airborne spray, as previously pointed out. Medicinal decongestion requires that the medioament, typically a solution having `bactericidal and/or bacteriostatic and also a vasoconstrictive action, must reach the congested zone and, by penetration or gradual decongestion, reach the upper surfaces of the nasal passage, e. g., the medicament must reach the seat vof the infection. In this respect it is desirable that the medicament reach and wet the surfaces bounding the turblnates and the meati, particularly the middle and upper meati 21 and 28. It is also desirable that the medicament reach various ostia opening on the meati. For example, the ostia of the ethmoid sinuses, indicated by the numeral 30, lead vfrom the posterior ethmoid cells 3| and open on the upper meatus 28. Also openings on this upper meatus 28 is the ostium 32 of the sphenoid sinus Opening on the middle meatus 21 is the ostium 3l of the maxillary sinus, also the ostia of the anterior ethmoids, not shown in Fig. 1
-to avoid confusion, and the ostium a of the bases of the middle and upper turbinates 2l and 25, it being particularly advantageous if the stream il impinges 0n a surface near the base of the middle turbinate 24, e. g., in or near a zone indicated by the dotted circle 3l of Fig. 1. Preferably, the stream il does not substantially diverge or break up into individual droplets prior to impingement near the zone I8. However. upon such lmpingement. the stream usually breaks up into a mist-like spray portion and a liquid portion. The minute droplets of such a mist-like spray move to and wet the exposed upper surfaces of the nasal cavity. That portion of the medicament which is not broken up into,the mist-like spray, and which ls termed hereinafter as the liquid portion, flows along the nasal Asurfaces from the vicinity of the zone 38. either-because of the initial velocity of the stream I4 or because-of gravitational action. In either instance, the contact oi' the medicament with the nasal surfaces tends to spread the medicament along the surfaces due toits wetting action. The net result is that the medicament sprays, flows, and trickles into the middle and upper meati 21 and 28 and reaches the walls of the three turbinates 23. 24. and 2l. If the medicament has a vasoconstrictive action. it shrinks the turbinates and the tissues surrounding the vvarious ostia. The medicament is conducted into and along the ostia by capillary action and opens the sinuses for drainage and ventilation. A portion of the medicament also reaches the orice of the Eustachian tube. 'I'he overall result is that the entire nasal passage and Eustachian tube are effectively cleared or decongested, and the ostia of the sinuses are open for ventilation and drainage of the sinuses themselves.
'Ihe action which takes place when the stream asses I4 impinges in or near the zone 36 issimilar to that illustrated in Fig. 2, which shows the stream I4 directed at an acute angle toward a sloping surface 38, which may be considered as a surface of the nasal passage or a surface of some other body; When the still-integral stream I4 first impinges on the surface 38 in a zone indicated by dotted circle 39, a portion ofthe liquid breaks up into a mist-like spray. This spray can be observed against a dark background in an appropriate light'. It'is suggested in Fig.' 2 by minute droplets 40 which are propelled from the zone 39 or which drift therefrom through the adjacent air. Another portion of the stream I4 appears not to be thus immediately subdivided and the forward velocity of the stream carries most of this liquid up the inclined surface 38 as a spreading film, although a smaller fraction of the liquid spreads sidewise and in a reverse direction to move nlm-wise yfrom "the zone 38. Such nlm-wise movement is 'suggested by arrows 42. As the film spreads, it becomes unstable and appears to break up in part to form surface-adhering droplets 43 which may drain gravitationally along the surface 38 or which may coalesce with other droplets to form larger masses which drop from the surface 38 ina rain-like manner, as suggested by drops` 44, ywhich fall freely to any surfaces therebeneath, e. g., to the surfaces, shown in Fig. 1, of the lowerturbinate 23 along which such droplets move to enter and coat the walls of the lower meatus 26. or from which they drop to the lower wall 20,
Some such action'takes place when the stream I4 impinges against a surface of the nasal passage, although the ilows of liquid may be somewhat diilerent than suggested in Fig. 2, depending upon the contour and slope of the impinge ment surface. However', irrespective ofthe particular action which takes place, it has been found clinically that this type of letting action is unexpectedly beneficial in supplying medicament in wetting relationship with the upper internal surfaces of the nose `to reach those areas of the nasal passage where the medicament is most needed and which often form the locus of any infection present.4 Best results arise from a stream I4 which does not substantially break up into droplets prior to impingement, namely, a stream which does not diverge substantially before impingement. However, some degree of divergence can be permitted, particularly if the velocity on impingement is sufficient to break up a portion of the medicament into a mist-like spray which penetrates the meati to reach the various ostia. f
Previously, a needle-like stream I4 for nasal medication Wa's neither commonly used nor, in fact, feasible. The present invention hasbeen designed not only to produce the desired stream I4 but to make it self-directional in the sense that its use. even in non-professional hands, will automatically direct the stream toward the upper internal surfaces of the nose. This is accomplished by the particular design of the invention which, aided by its necessary mode of use in nasal medication. directs the stream substantially as suggested.
The details of the preferred embodiment of the invention are best shown in'Figs. 5 to i8. Referring thereto and particularly to Fig. 6, the container I2 is preferably of the longitudinallyelongated type to provide a longitudinal axis, indicated generally by the dotted line B-B, and which aids in directionally `predetermining the needle-like stream I4, as well as in making the device self-directional when employed as a nasal applicator. This container is usually formed of a suitable plastic, preferably of the transparent type, for example polystyrene, although any material non-reactive with the medicament can be employed.- It is of relativelysmall size, preferably of a size and shape to be retentively encompassed in the palm of the hand. It yprovides a side wall 45 closed by a bottom wall 48 and preferably provides an externally-threaded neck 41 terminating in an upper annular edge 41a extend- 1Ds substantially radially outward. The neck 41 receives an internally-threaded retaining member or cap 48 formed of a thermoplastic or thermosetting plastic, metal, or other material. The
threaded engagement between the neck 41 and the cap 48 is merely exemplary of one form of attachment means, it being clear that other expedients can be employed.
The details of the pump I3 are not, per se, a. part of the present invention. Various forms of pumps can be employed, such', for example, as those shown in the patents to Andrew M. Martin, Nos. 2,362,080 and 2,362,081. Fig. 6 illustrates certain details of the pumping structure of the former patent as this type of pump vhas been found very satisfactory as the pressuring source of the present invention. Generally speaking, the preferred embodiment of the present invention contemplates the use of a pump having two pump elements relatively movable along the axis B-B, one of the pump elements being connected to the container I 2 and the other being connected to the head I I, whereby relative movement between the head and the container propels a pump-metered quantity of medicament from the head Il.
The pump shown In Fig. 6 includes a cylindrical barrel 50 having a flange 5I extending outward beneath an inwardly-extending flange 52 of the cap 48. The ange 5I extends outward a substantial distance acrossthe upper annular edge 41a of the neck 41 and a sealing washer 63 is preferably disposed therebetween so that tightening of the cap 48 compresses the washer 53 against the neck 41 and also centers the barrel 58 in the lcontainer I2.
In accordance with the present invention, the washer 53 is preferably foil-coated cork to provide a deformable surface 54, usually formed by the foil, engaging the upper annular edge 41a. .A very desirable breathing action, tending to equalize the internal and external pressures of the container, is obtained by roughening, knurling, or grooving the entire surface of the. upper annular edge 41a, as suggested by the numeral 55 in Fig. 8. If the container I2 is formed of a material softening when heated, a hot le or other toothed tool may be pressed against the annular edge 41a to obtain the roughening or other expedients can be employed. This forms minute depressions in the annular edge 41a which are usually in some predetermined pattern but which cooperate with the deformable surface 54 in providing a plurality of minute passages of suilicient size to permit a slow leakage of air tending to equalize internal and external pressures, but of insufficient size to permit gravitational flow of the liquid upon upturning the containerv or placing it on its side. 1f the surface 54 is not deformable or if the washer 63 is eliminated to permit the flange lil to engage the roughened annular edge 41a, the engaging surface will merely bridge across the minute depres- Vsions without substantial deformation, and the depth thereof will determine the minimum size 7 of the minutepassages. However. if the surface I4 is deformable. tightening of the cap 48 willJ force the crests of the roughened annular edge 41a slightly into the deformable surface 54 so that the size of the minute passages is reduced as the cap is tightened. With the usual manual tightening of the cap 48 to press the foil-coated washer 63 against the roughened annular edge 41a. minute depressions of a depth between about .G25-.05 mm.. or slightly more, will be found satisfactory with a liquid of about 40 centipoises. With other liquids, deeper or more shallow depressions will be desirable, depending on the physical properties of the liquid. When using a deformable surface 54, grooves of undue depth can be formed in the annular edge 41a and tightening ofthe cap 49 will decrease this depth to the desired amount by deforming the surface 64 to extend a distance into the grooves to decrease the size of the remaining passages. In practice, the cap 48 is tightened until there is no gravitational leakage of the liquid when the container is upturned or on its side, the size of the minute passages being then such as to admit a slow flow of'air tending to equalize the internal and external pressures.
The lower end of the barrel 60 provides a reduced-diameter portion which receives the upper end of an intake tube 56 opening just above the bottom wall 46 of the container, the upper end of the tube 66 being suitably adhered to the reduced-diameter portion.
Near the lower end of the barrel 60 is an intake valve, shown as including a hollow valve member 68 having a hemispherical lower end adapted to seal against a conical valve seat 59 provided by the barrel 50 to resist movement of liquid from the interior of the barrel 60 through the intake tube Il but to permit free reverse movement. The valve member 58 moves vertically in a cage 60 heid in engagement with a shoulder 6| of the barrel 50 by a spring 62. The lower end of this spring surrounds an upstanding flange 69 of the cage which centers the spring. The interior of the cage 60 is of sufilcient height to permit a small vertical movement of the valve member '68. When liquid is flowing upward in the intake tube 66 into the barrel 50, the valve member 59 rises into engagement with a plurality of stops 64 spaced to provide passage means accommodating the upward now.
The barrel 60 and its associated structure thus far described may be considered as comprising one of the pump elements of the invention, removably connected to the container l2 by the cap 48. The other pump element is movable relative thereto along the axis B-B and includes. in general, a hollow plunger 66 comprising a. piston portion 68, a. tapered portion 61, and a liquid-conducting, pump-actuating member 68 there being an annular shoulder 69 at the junction of the tapered portion 61 and the actuating member 98. The piston portion 66 provides a shouldered recess receiving the upper end of the spring 62, whereby this spring not only holds the cage 60 in position but also resiliently urges the hollow plunger 65 upwardly. The piston portion 66 is only slightly smaller than the interior of the barrel to minimize leakage of pumped liquid therebetween. In normal use, this leakage is very small but, if present, is returned to the liquid in the container I2 through a slot 10 formed longitudinally in the upper end of the barrel 50 and traversing the flange 5 i This slot also maintains the pressure on the upper portion of thc piston portion 66 equal to the pressure on the liquid in the container i2 and produces other said patents.
lThe actuating member 68 provides a cylindrical exterior surface 1i and aliquid-conducting pas' sage 12. both coaxial with the axis B-B. The pump-actuating member 68 is movable relative to the container along this axis and. during such movement, is additionally guided by a retaining member 15 which, in the present invention, serves several purposes. This retaining member 15 provides a skirt 16 teiescoping within and suitably adhered to an upstanding collar 11 oi' the iiange 5l. This collar 11 has an external diameter slightly smaller than the internal diameter of the flange 52 of the vcap 48 and serves to journal the cap and to cntralize the barrel 50 with respect to this cap. The retaining member 15 also has a depending flange 18 which closely surrounds and slidably journals the exterior surface 1i of the pump-actuating member 68. This depending fiange serves several functions. In the first place, it serves as a wiper for the exterior surface 1I as the actuating member 68 moves upward. In the second place, it surrounds this exterior surface sufllciently closely to provide a relatively good sealing action preventing a gravity flow of liquid from the container i2, even though the device is upturned or if the axis B--B is horizontal. In this connection, it should be understood that auxiliary sealing means can be provided at this point, if desired, but this is usually not necessary and, if used. should still, during operation of the device, permit passage of a small amount of air necessary'to compensate for liquid displaced from the container I2. In the embodiment shown, such displacement air enters the container through the junction of the depending flange 18 and the pump-actuating member 68 during relative movement therebetween but without permitting substantial or objectionable leakage of liquid. In the third place, the lower end of this depending flange serves as a, stop engaged by the annular shoulder 69 to limit the extended position of the hollow plunger 65 under the action of the spring 62.
In addition, the retaining member 15 provides an outwardly-extending ange 19 serving g dual purpose. Thus, this flange 19 is of a diameter slightly larger than the internal diameter of the flange 52 oi' the cap 48 so as to prevent detachment of the cap 48 from association with the pump elements when the entire pumping structure is removed from the container i2. Also. in accordance with the present invention, this ilange 19 forms a support for a tubular. closed-ended and preferably domed cover (see Figs. 5 and 1) preferably having a cylindrical side wall of such internal diameter as tobe slid over the flange 19 and to be held in place by friction against accidental removal. The cover 80 protects the head il from contamination or accidental movement when the invention is carried in the pocket or handbag. In the preferred construction, the lower portion of the cylindrical side wall provides at least three minute inwardly-extending projections 80a which engage the flange 19, leaving narrow intervening annular spaces 80h permitting passage of air to equalize the pressures inside the cover 80 and surrounding the container i2 but of such narrow dimension as to prevent passage of the liquid except under pressure. Thus, any accidental leakage between the retaining member 15 and-the pump-actuating member 68 is retained in the cover 80.
a If desired, a small cushion member 8| of sponge rubber orother soft material may be adhered in the upper interior of the domed cover 80 to engage the head Il in orifice-sealingrelationship. This member 8l may adsorb' or take up medicament from the orifice which it seals or it may be otherwise wetted with the medicament frombtime to time. In either event it not only prevents vany drying of the medicament in the orifice but also sterilizes the surface of the vhead Il which it engages `ii? the medicament has an antiseptic action. a j
'I'he head I I forms an important part of the present invention and is constructed as best shown in Figs. 5, 6, and 7. In general, it provides a body, externally contoured as later described, and having a central opening 82 within which the uppery end of the pump-actuating member 68 is suitably adhered. Extending across the upper end of the opening 82 is an end wall 83 formed integrally with the remainder of the head` I I and providing a discharge orifice 85 axiallyaligned, Withthe axis B-B. The function of the pump I3 is to deliver to the inneror entrance end of this discharge orifice 85 a pressured stream of the medicament or other liquid which is to be jetted from the device.' The function of the orifice 85 is to form this liquid into a needle-like stream I4. In practice, the orifice 85 can be shaped to produce the particular stream desired. The preferred orice for the invention, when used as a nasal medicator or for other purposes, is a minute cylindrical-walled orice having a diameter between about .008 and .012", preferably .010, this diameter determining the diameter of the needle-like stream I4 immediately upon expulsion In the preferred practice, the axial length of the orifice 85 is at least twice the diameter and preferably from two to ten times this diameter, a very satisfactory length vfor a nasal medicator being about n", or slightly more. The orice 85 is usually formed during the molding operation and its size is such that no medicament will flow gravitationally therethrough if the device is upturned.
In the preferred construction, a tubular element 86 is disposed in the central opening 82 between the end of the pump-actuating member 68 and the end wall 83, and serves numerous functions. The lower end of this tubular element 86 provides. a passage 8l axially aligned with, and forming a continuation of, theliquid-conducting passage 12. Toward its upper end, this passage is constricted, as indicated at 88, and opens into a valve chamber 8!!` in which is disposed a valve element 90 adapted, when in its lower position, to engage in sealing relationship a conical valve seat 9| of the tubular element 88. The valve` eter than the valve chamber 89 to move freely therein, while permitting passage of the liquid in the zone between the valve member and the side wall of the chamber l89.
A small disc-like lter or strainer 83 is disposed in the extreme upper end of the central opening 82 just below, and preferably extending across the entrance portion of, the orice 85. This strainer is preferably formed of metal screen, usually stainlessA steel screen of about 100 mesh, and has an outer diameter substantially: corresponding to the diameter ofthe central opening 82. The upper end of the tubular element 86 bears annularly against thelower portion of this screen and aids in retaining it in'place.
Such a screen-type iilterserves many desirable functions in y'thel device.` 4 In the flrstfplace, it strains the liquidvdischarging through the small orifice and prevents cloggingithereof by any particles-which `might have accidentally entered the liquid medicament. In the second place, it serves asa stop for the yupward movement 'of the valve member 90. This value member engages the lowerportion of the screen ina zone beneath the orifice 85 and such engagement tends to clean the screen in the central area which'feeds the orifice. In thethird place, the screen is of such small mesh that it remains wetted with the liquid medicament, thus tending to prevent any leakage of air into the device through the orifice and thus aiding the upper valve structure in preventing any loss of prime of the pump. When the cover 80 is in place, the cushion member 8l aids further in.` this connection. The length of the tubular element 86 preferably determines the maximum stroke and, thus, the maximum discharge per stroke which, preferably, is less thanthe total dosage of medicament desired so that ay predetermined number of actuations, usually three, is required' to expel the prescribed dosage, thus preventing a part of the dosage from running from thenose, as might be the case if discharged in asingle actuation. In this connection, the maximum inward movement of the pump-actuating member 88 and its attached piston portion 66 is preferably determined by engagement between a lower lip 94 of the head I I and the upper surface of the retaining member 15. In assembling the device, the position of this lip 94 with respect to the pump-actuating member 68 is determined by the length of the tubular element 86. shortening of this tubular element will produce a shorter stroke, with correspondingly decreased dosage, while lengthening of the tubular element will increase the stroke, with correspondingly increased dosage. 1n this way, selection of a tubular element 86 of appropriate length predetermines the maximum dosage of the device per stroke or actuation.
.The external contour of the head I I contributes importantly to various usages of the invention. Thesen-directional character of the invention, when used fornasal'medication and its eiectiveness for this purpose, is substantially aided by an appropriate rdesignoi4 the applicator end of the head II. Preferably, the upper or vapplicator end of this head provides a rounded nostrilengageablepsurface' 95 of a size to engage the nostril or the anterior naris. This shape of the surface 95 can be made to serve two desirable functions. In the first place, it insures substantial centering of the stream I4 with respect'to the nostril.v In the second place, it can deform the nostril into substantially circular contour and engage same in substantially air-sealing relationship to prevent any substantial ingress or egress of air during'the medicating operation. This is desirable' as preventing drafts or currents of air which might quickly displace the mist-like spray from` its desired environment, either by drawing it into the throat or expelling it through the nostril. At the base of the surface 95 isa rounded ledge96 servingv to preventtoo deep a penetration,A ofy they head `II into the nasal passage by engagement with the anterior naris or nostril.
'I 'he head'll ,also provides nger-engageable means'foract'uation of the pump when the container is held in the hand and the head 'II is engaged by one or more iingersof.. this hand. Preferably, the head provides nger-engageable means adapted to be engaged by two adjacent fingers or by the end of the thumb. The preferred construction provides nger-engageable depression means on opposite sides of the head to receive facing surfaces of two adjacent nngers of a hand while the container i12 isheld exclusively by this hand. At the same time, it is desirable that the device should not require orientation about the axis B-B preparatory to being placed in operative position in the hand. For this purpose and other reasons, the preferred nger-engageable depression means comprises a shallow circular depression 98 extending completely around the head il, preferably at a position between the rounded ledge 99 and the lower lip 94. The utility and advantages of such a finger-engageable depression 98 will be more fully apparent from the subsequent description of the mode of use of the invention.
Preferably, all of the elements of the device are made of a material non-reactive to the liquid medicament to be jetted, thus preventing any contamination thereof, either in the container l2 or during passage through the pump elements. In practice, we 'find it desirable to make as many of the elements as possible of thermoplastic or thermosetting resins. The head il and all of the elements of the pump i3, with the exception of the spring 62 and in some instances the valve element 90, can best be made of a polyvinyl chloride-polyvinyl acetate copolymer, e. g., a material known as Vinylite. Such a material is excellently suited to the apparatus and has long-wearing characteristics. The container I2 is preferably made of molded polystyrene and the domed cover 80 can desirably be molded methyl methacrylate, e. g., a material known as Plexiglas or Lucite, thus minimizing breakage during rough handling or upon droppage of the device.
In assembling the elements of the device, the pump elements are preferably rst associated. The assembly can be accomplished, for example, in the following manner, it being clear that the words adhered," adhering, etc., have reference to any pressing, cementing, or other structurallyunifying operation tending to affix the parts in relatively permanent relationship. The valve member 58 and the cage 69 are dropped into the barrel, with the spring 62 in place, and the hollow plunger is lowered to compress the spring. The cap 48 is then positioned around the collar 11 and the retaining member 16 is then adhered within this collar. Preparatory to attaching the head II, the strainer 93 is disposed in the cen-` tral opening 82 and the tubular element 8S is then forced into this opening 92 with the valve element B in position. The upper end of this tubular element 86 preferably makes a press fit with the opening 82 and its lower end is somewhat relieved to provide 'for the reception of a suitable substance facilitating the adhering. The head Il is then adhered to the upper end of the pump-actuating member 68. The washer 53 is then slipped around the barrel 59 and the intake tube 56 is then adhered to the barrel 59.
The container l2 is then filled to any desired level with the medicament, and the previously associated elements are then attached to the container in the relationship shown in Fig. 6 by tightening the cap 48. The head Il is then moved toward the container I2 one or two times until the pump i3 is primed and the internal passages are completely filled with the medicament to and including the valve chamber 89, and
12 preferably the orifice 85. The device is now ready for metered discharge of the medicament. In using the device for nasal medication, the preferred orientation, aiding substantially in the self-directional character of the invention, is suggested in Fig. 3, showing operation by a righthanded person. Here, the index finger and the second nger of the right hand are pressed into the circular depression 98, the thumb engaging the bottom wall 49. The ngers engaging the depression 98 are then moved toward the thumb. This moves the head Il toward .the container l2, the reaction force being taken by the thumb. This is done after the surface has been engaged with the nostril so that the head H extends a short distance into the nasal passage. This method of holding the Jetting device of the invention, combined with the engagement between the head Il and the nostril, insures delivery ofv the stream il to impinge on the upper internal surfaces of the nose. During such actuation of the device, a patient will automatically orient the axis B-B in the desired direction, any attempt to substantially displace this axis from its desired relationship with the nose representing an unnatural or uncomfortable method of actuating the device. When the device is oriented in the hand as suggested in Fig. 3, it is almost automatically aimed properly by the motions necessary to the actuation.
So, also, when the device is used for purposes other than nasal medication, its relationship with the human hand, suggested in Fig. 3, represents an accurate aiming" as the thumb is aligned with the axis B-B and the first and second fingers are on opposite sides thereof-a natural aiming position. When the device is used in this manner for eye or throat irrigation, it is remarkably directive, even in hands unaccustomed to the device, in the sense that the device can be accurately aimed so that the direction of the stream I4 is predetermined.'
Another method of holding the device, which is almost equally satisfactory and which is preferred particularly if the device is to be used for inconspicuous nasal medication ln public places, is suggested in Fig. 4. Here, the device is held in the palm of the hand, with the container partially encircled by the second, third, and fourth fingers. The thumb and index nger press into opposite sides of the circular depression 98. Here again, when the device is brought into contact with the nostril, the axis B-B will naturally be disposed to direct the stream Il to the desired surfaces of the nasal cavity. To expel the liquid, the thumb and first finger are moved toward the palm of the hand, the reaction force in this instance being taken either by the encircling fingers or by the bottom of the container, which rests in the palm of the hand. When used in the position shown in Fig, 4, the device can also be aimed" with very substantial accuracy, thus facilitating employment of the device for purposes other than nasal medication.
Another similar method of using the device is to place only the end of the thumb in the circular depression 98-while the remaining ngers encircle the container. The thumb is moved toward the container to advance the head and actuate the pump.
The device can also be employed for nasal medication merely by grasping the container and forcing the container toward the head Il while the surface 95 of this head is in contact with the device will automatically be used in suchwayzas to jetlhe stream Il in the correct and most advantagous direction-.A
It is sometimes desirable to use a spring-loaded y r valve member in the head Il. complished by Yinterposing a light compression spring between the valve member 90 `and the. strainer 9,3or the alternativek vvalve, member shown in Fig. can be used. As shown in Fig. 10, the conical valve seat 9| is engagedfby a conical portion |00 of a valve member lillmolded of suitable plastic material and being hollow to lessen its weight. This valve member lili provides a tongue |02 of smaller diameter than the constricted passage 88 and preferably tapered, as shown, to guide the to and fro movement of the valve Imember and retain its orientation relative to the seat 9|. The upper end of the valve member provides an annular recess whichre- This' can be ac- 14 such reduction in atmospheric pressure will cause discharge into the cover 80 of only that small amount of liquid in the pump. In such upturned position, the open end of the intake tube 56 coml muni'cates'wlth the air in the container |2 and the pressure differential is relieved through the passages of the pump, thevalve members .58 and vf 90 vvbeing then gravitationally displaced from their respective'seats andthe strainer 93 preventing the valve member. 90 from closing the orifice 85.
Various changes and modifications` can be made withoutdeparting from the spirit of the inceives and centers the lower end of a spring |05..`
' venting any air flow into the pump when the device is operated in any position where gravity tends to unseat the valve, e. g., when the jet is angled downwardly from the horizontal. 'Ihe requisite spring tension is very small and does not interfere with a lifting of the valve member by the liquid during actuation of the device.
The device herein described in detail, provided with an oriilce of 0.01" in diameter, develops sufficient pressure to jet a stream which holds together for at least a, f-oot or more and which then breaks up into small droplets which will carry to a surface six or eight feet away and impinge in a. circular area having a diameter of only a few inches.
One feature of the device is that it may be carried without danger of leakage even when subjected to change in atmospheric pressure. Withy the construction hereinbefore described, a change in atmospheric pressure is transmitted to the interior of the cover 80 through the spaces 80h and to the interior of the container I2 through the -minute passages between the washer 53 and the depressions of the upper annular edge 41a. Thus, if the structure is upright or in any position in which the liquid does not submerge the entrance portions of all of the aforesaid minute passages, e. g.. if it is not in an upturned position, such breathing of air into and from the cover 80 and into and from the container i2 will prevent pressure differentials which might expel liquid through the pump. In the absence of such features, 'a reduction in atmospheric pressureyas by carrying the device to a higher altitude, may cause a column of liquid to rise in the pump and discharge from the orifice 85. Even then, however, such discharge is retained in the cover 80 and does not leak therefrom unless all of the spaces 80h are closed by the liquid and suilicient pressure difierentials are developed to force the liquid therethrough. Even if the device is upturned so that the entrance portions of all of the minute passages hereinbefore mentioned are submerged, any
jvention-` as definedA in the appended claims. I y 'We claim as ourinvention:l
l. In a device for injecting a jet of liquid medicament into the nasal cavity, the combination of, an applicator head having a rounded end fitting the entrance to the nostril, said head also having an axially directed orifice centrally disposed in said end for directing a thin stream of said liquid medicament through said nostril into contact with the upper sinus areas, and a liquid measuring pump between arsource of liquid medicament and said head for withdrawing liquid medicament from said source and forcing a measured volume thereof under pressure through said orifice.
2. In a device for injecting a jet of liquid medicament into the nasal cavity, the combination of, an applicator head having a rounded end fitting the entrance to the nostril, said head also having an axially directed oriilce centrally disposed in said end for directing a thin stream of said liquid medicament through said nostril into contact with the upper sinus areas, a container for holding a body of said liquid medicament and having a longitudinal axis in substantial alignment with the axis of said head and orlce, a liquid supply tube in said container and a liquid measuring pump for withdrawing liquid medicament from said body through said supply tube and forcingl a measured volume of said liquid medicament under pressure through said orice.
3. .In a device for injecting a jet of liquid medicament into the nasal cavity, the combination of, an elongated applicator head having a rounded end fitting the entrance to the nostril and having a peripheral groove spaced axially from said end and constituting finger engaging means, said head also having an axially directed orifice centrally disposed in said end for directing a thin stream of liquid medicament through said nostril into contact with the upper sinus areas, a supply tube for said liquid medicament, and a liquid measuring pump between said supply tube and said orince for forcing a measured volume of said liquid medicament through said orice upon relative movement of said head and supply tube toward each other.
FREDERICK M. TURNBULL. WILLIAM F. HAMILTON.
REFERENCES 'CITED The following references are of record in the flle of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name \Date 780,077 Van Ness Jan. 17, 1905 2,064,314 Morin Dec. 15, 1936 2,362,081 Martin Nov. 7, 1944 I Certificate of Correction Patent No. 2,434,875. January 20, 1948.
FREDERICK M. TURNBULL ET AL.
It is hereby certified that error appears in the printed specification of the above numbered patent requiring correction as follows: Column 10, line 8, for value read valve; and that the said LettersPatent should be read with this correction therein that the same may conform to the record of the case in the Patent Office.
Signed and sealed this 20th day of April, A. D. 1948.
'moms F. MURPHY,
Assistant Qommsaaner of Potente.