US 2512621 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 27, 1950 J; H. EMERSQN 2,512,621
THERAPEUTIC VIBRATOR Filed Nov. 23, 1944 Patented June 27, y1950 THERAPEUTIC VBBA-TIY()Rv John H. Emerson, Cambridge, Mass. Application November 23, 1951-1, 564;"185v 5 claims. (c1. 12s-3sl This invention relates to therapeutic vibrators for the treatment of certain physical and/or nervous' ailments, for instance extreme weariness, insomnia-etc. Ithas been discovered that helpfulv results may sometimes be obtained by causing the patient'. to sitor lie upon a support which is vibrate'd, usually at a relatively high frequency, but with a low amplitude. Heretofore, so far as is known toy me,` the apparatus designed for this purpose has been of cumbersome, complicated and expensive type so that it has not been readily available to the majority of would-be users. For example, it has been proposed to incorporate in thestru'cture vof a bed/mattress or spring,vof otherwise standard type, motor driven means for inciting thedesired vibration. While these built-in constructions `are' undoubtedly useful, they are very expensive, so' that the number of such appliances whichv are available even in large hospitals is -quite limited;` Thusit becomes necessary, in Vmany cases, for a patient Who is to receive the treatment to be moved from the ordinary bed tothespeci'ally constructedbed designed for this treatment; there is doubtless some re hazard involvedin the housing of a motor device within the internal structure of the bed; the built-in motordevic'e adds` substantially to the weight of the-already heavy and somewhat cumbersome springv or mattress, and the direction of the vibrations Aimparted isxed and invariable.
The present invention has for its principal object the provision-'of' aV portable device'for setting up the desired vibrations in a bedor vother support; to provide vibration-inducing means of simple and very inexpensive construction readily movable from place to place; to provide vibrationinducing means which may be applied to any ordinary bed without substantially disturbing a patient resting thereon; to provide such a device wherein the motor means may be located outside of the bed and' bed coverings; to provide vibration-inducing means which may readily be so arranged as to cause the vibrations to travel longitudinally or transversely of the bed as may be preferred; to provide a device of this kind which does not substantially decrease the comfort of the patient, and to provide such an arrangement which does not necessitate any modification of the bed or bed structure in applying it for use.
Other. and further objects and advantages of the invention will be pointed out in the following more detailed description and by reference to the accompanying'drawings in which ,F151t is a diagrammatic planiview of a bed 2 mattress. having they device of the presentinven'tion operatively associated therevc'ith.4
Fig. 2l is.' aidia'gramlmatic 7'side "elevationv of the' partsxshownl-in Fig. 1, the. mattress being-shown as restingA upona Y conventional bedspring--.A
Fig. Slistafragmentary plan viewto alieni/ger scale of the device of the present inventionl re'- moved from the bed.
Fig. 4 is a side elevation of the device shown ;in.Fig. 3,
Fig. 5l is a fragmentary side elevationof one end of the device shown in Fig. 4 but to a larger scale and with certain parts in vertical section, and
Fig.. 6 is a fragmentary diagrammatic section illustrating another device for vibrating the panel.
shown in association with a bed spring andi/mattress, it is to be understood that it is likewise and herein when reference is made toa cushion element or pad, such terms are to bel construed as broadly inclusive of a conventional bed mattress, a chair cushion, pad, or other similar soft and yielding support.
Referring to the drawings,.the numeral I designates a conventional bed mattress here shown as resting upon a bed spring 2. The vibration imparting device of the present invention indicated generally at 3, in- Figs. 1, 3, and 4, is designed to have a major portion of its length located between the mattress andspring. Depending upon the treatment to be given, this device may be inserted between the mattress and spring either at the head end or foot end of the bed, or at either side as may be desirable or convenient.
In the embodiment of the invention herein for convenience in description,- the improved device of the present inventioniisamasar 8, and to one side of this end portion 'I of the panel, there is xed the casing 9 of an electric motor I of an inertia type vibrator. The shaft II of this motor extends through a suitable aperture in the panel and has mounted on its free end a weight I2. This weight is eccentric so that when the motor shaft is turned, vibration impulses are set up in a direction substantially perpendicular to the axis of the shaft, that is to say, in a direction parallel to the plane of the panel 4. Preferably, the eccentric weight I2 is housed within a casing I3 secured to the opposite side of the panel from a motor casing 9. Conveniently bolts Sa, Fig. 4, extend through flanges of both casings 9 and I3 and through suitable openings of the panel 4 so as to unite the several parts to form a unitary structure. A suitable exible conductor cable I4 leads into the motor casing to supply current for operating the motor.
Preferably, one surface at least `of the panel 4 is roughened as indicated at I5 Fig; 3 or other- Wise treated sov that when it is in contact Ywith the spring or cushion element, it frictionally engages vthe latter so that vibrations imparted Vto the panel are to be transmitted to the spring end or cushion element.
In using this device, the slitted end portion of the panel 4 is introduced between the mattress and the spring of the bed, the end 'I of the panel being left projecting 'from beneath the mattress andvbed .coverings ,and -When the motor is energized,jthe rotation of the eccentrically disposed Weight I2 creates vibrations in the motor casing Which are transmitted directly to the panel 4. These vibrations act substantially in the plane of the panel and in closed curved paths. Since the mattress restsjupon 'the upper surface of this panel 4 and bears upon it with. some Weight and particularly since the mattress vis supported resiliently by the bed spring, the vibrations .of the panel4 are frictionally transmitted to the mattress and likewise to the spring, thus subjecting the patient lying upon the bed to vibration. .Such treatment, asabove pointed out is highly effective in the alleviation of certain types ofillness, particularly nervous and circulatory troubles.
-Instead of the rotary type of motor just suggested, a vibratory typeelectriczmotor may be employed, for example,-as diagrammatically illustrated in Fig. 6. In this arrangement, the alternating current magnet I6 and a .resiliently supported.v armature l'i of substantial mass are mounted on the panel in place of the motor Ill, and preferably housed in a case I8. Whensupplied with alternating orpulsating current, the armature is vibrateii, thus lsetting up substantially rectilinear vibrations inthe panel.
Merely. by Way of illustration and Without anir intent thereby to limit the invention, the following dimension-al details are suggested as having been found to produce desirable and eifective results. 'Thus the panel 4 may consist of hard, dense nber board of la commercial type, usually laid down from pulp in a Fourdrinier machine and then'Y highly compressed, such material usually having at least one surface which is rough with a texture more or less suggestive of a textile fabric. Such said material, of the order of 1,/8 .thickness is desirable for the purpose. Material of-this thickness when introducedlbeneath the mattress does not substantially aifect the contour of the upper surface of the mattress, and its presence is thus substantially'unnoticed by the occupant ofthe bed.- Apanel of the order of 30" long and 10" wide is suitable for the purpose, the area of said panel thus approximating one-thirteenth of the area of a full-sized mattress and when slitted to provide the fingers 6 at one end, the slits may extend inwardly to a distance of the order of 18".
To impart vibrations of the desired rapidity and amplitude, it is found motor speeds of from 1700 to 3600" R. P. M. are effective, using a Weight having an eccentricity of the order of -g of an inch. A Weight suitable for a purpose, driven at this speed and with this eccentricity may, for example, consist of a disk of metal of the order of one inch in diameter and 1% in thickness.
As above pointed out, these dimensions and rates of vibration are given merely by vvay of example of an acceptable practice and it is understood that the invention is not in any sense to be regarded as limited to embodiment in apparatus employing these particular dimensional relationships.
If desired, in order to lessen noise Whenthe device contacts the bed spring,. a removable padded cover I9 (Fig. 4) may be provided.
While one `desirame embodiment has been 11- lustrated, it is to be understood that the invention is not to be limited to the precise details here disclosed but is to be regarded as broadly inclusive of-any and all equivalence thereof such as fall Within the scope of the appended claims. I claim: f 1. A therapeutic vibrator comprising a thin, stiiiiy resilient panel, comprising a portion designed to underlie and to have frictional engagement with a cushion element resting upon a resilient support, the panel being of such dimensions that ,it does not substantially affect the normal contour of the upper surface of the cushion element when disposed beneath the latter, a motor casing mounted near one end of and supported solely by the panel at that part of the latter which does not underlie the cushion element, a motor Within the casing, a second casing arranged at the opposite side of the panel fromV the motor casing, the motor shaft extendingy through the panel and into the latter casing, and an eccentric mass on the shaft of the motor within the latter casing, said eccentric mass revolving in a plane parallel to that of the panel, `the parts being so constructed and arranged that actuation of the motor sets up rapid vibrations of small amplitude in the panel and in the plane of the latter.
2. A portable device for vibrating a bed for therapeutic purposes, said device comprising a thin, stiiily resilient, elongate panel designed to be disposed between the spring and mattress and being freely adjustable to any desired position when in use, said panel being divided by parallelr slits extending inwardly from one end to form a plurality of paralleh'individually flexible ngers, and motor-driven, vibration-creating means mounted on and supported by the opposite endv bed spring and av conventional mattress while leaving the lmotor 'driven. vibrationcr'eating means outside the bed, the vibration-creating means being operative to set up vibrations in the panel in the direction o! its length thereby solely by friction to vibrate the mattress resting on the panel.
4. A portable device for vibrating a bed for therapeutic purposes, said device comprising a stitily resilient, elongate panel designed to be slid between the spring and mattress and being freely adjustable to any desired position when in use, said panel having one or more slits extending inwardly from one of its ends thereby to divide such end of the panel into a plurality of independent ngers, the slits extending inwardly from the end of the panel a distance of the order of 18" and the panel being oi' a total length of the order of 30", and motor-driven, vibrationcreating means mounted on the unslitted portion of the panel.
5. A portable therapeutic vibrator designed and arranged for ready application to and as ready removal from a bed having a conventional spring and mattress, said vibrator comprising a thin panel of stiilly resilient material, the major portion of which, when the vibrator is in use. lies be- JOHN H. EMERSON.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 761,862 Wallman et al June 7, 1904 897,791 Seeber Sept. 1, 1908 1,630,115 Duprey May 24, 1927 1,818,287 Wahl Aug. 11, 1931 2,174,648 Solinski Oct. 3, 1939 2,311,274 Whitney Feb. 16, 1943 2,425,655 'I'hompkins Aug. 12, 1947