US 2699554 A
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ATTORNEYS i L m z m e w N a/ Lw a w a i J J 2 w M 4 Z 3 L 3 W/ z a 1 H I 2 v M 3 M N Jan. 18, 1955 United States Patent ARTIFICIAL LIMB Peter Comelli, San Francisco, Calif.
Application July 7, 1953, Serial No. 366,513
2 Claims. (Cl. 3-32) This invention relates to artificial limbs and more particularly to a novel spring and swivel connection for an artificial foot connected to one end of an artificial limb.
It is an object of this invention to provide an improved ankle joint between the foot, ground engaging, portion and the calf portion of an artificial limb to provide for the proper desired universal connection as be tween the foot and calf portion of a human foot and at the same time provide for proper rigidity of the foot, as while standing, and for proper flexing of the foot relative to the leg as while walking.
A further object of this invention is to provide a novel, improved, ankle joint having resilient means for supporting the artificial leg to the artificial foot which resiliency will provide for the return of the foot to a natural position when the weight supported on the foot is released.
A still further object of this invention is to provide an improved resilient and universal ankle joint for an artificial leg which may be initially constructed of readily available material and so arranged that adjustment of the foot or any necessary repairs to the foot or swivel connection may be readily accomplished.
Other and further objects and advantages of the invention will be hereinafter described and the novel features thereof defined in the appended claims.
In the drawings:
Fig. l is a side elevation, partly broken away, and partly in section of an artificial limb constructed according to an embodiment of this invention.
Fig. 2 is a rear elevation, partly broken away and partly in section, of the rear side of the artificial limb, showing the universal connection of the foot to the ankle member.
Referring to the drawings the numeral designates generally an artificial limb and more particularly the lower portion of a hollow artificial limb which may be supported on the leg of a wearer by conventional fastening means, not shown in the drawings. The artificial limb 10 is formed, more or less, as the calf portion of the leg between the knee and foot of the wearer. A foot 11 is supported below the lower end of the artificial limb 10 for longitudinal movement along the length of the limb 10 and also for universal movement relative to the limb 10 and the ankle member 12 which is supported between the foot 11 and the leg member 10.
The lower end of the leg member 10 is provided with a downwardly opening recess 14 within which a cup 15 is adapted to be engaged. The cup 15 is open at its lower side and is provided with a top wall 16 which is secured to the leg member 10 by suitable screws 17 or other suitable fastening means. The top wall 16 is further formed with an aperture 18 substantially centrally thereof and in vertical alignment with an opening 19 in the bottom wall 20 which forms the lower extreme end of the hollow leg 10. An ankle member 12 is positioned below the bottom wall 20 of the leg 10 and is provided for vertical sliding movement relative to the leg by an upwardly opening cup 21, open on the upper side thereof and secured by its closed lower side by screws 22 which engage through the lower wall of the cup 21. The lower cup 21 is telescopically received in the upper cup 15 to provide for the movement of the ankle memher 12 longitudinally of the leg 10 as may be required by the weight of the person wearing the leg 10 while standing on the artificial limb.
A coil spring 23 is positioned between the ankle member 12 and the leg member 10 and engages at its upper end on the lower surface of the top wall 16 of the upper cup member 15, and at its lower end on the upper surface of the bottom wall of the lower cup member 21 for constantly biasing the ankle member 12 downwardly relative to the artificial limb 10.
The foot 11 is supported below the ankle 12 for universal movement relative to theyankle 12 and to the leg member 10. The foot 11 is provided with an up wardly opening recess 25 at the rear end thereof, substantially above the heel and the instep portion of the foot. The universal connection is provided by a'horizontally disposed disk or plate member 26 having a depending screw 27, the screw27 extending into the downwardly opening recess 28 where it is threadedly engaged by a nut member 29. A washer 36 is adapted to be seated between the disk member 26 and the upper surface of the upwardly opening recess 25 to provide for the secure engagement of the plate 26 within the upwardly opening recess 25. A pair of horizontally spaced apart upwardly extending ears 31 are fixed to or formed integral with the upper surface of the disk 26 and a pin 31P extends horizontally through a connecting opening to provide for the lower pivoted connection of the swivel joint.
An upwardly extending shaft 32 having a disk or plate member 33 extends upwardly through the ankle 12 and into the lower hollow portion of the leg member 10. A pair of depending arms 34 extend downwardly from the plate 33 and engage on the upper end of a connecting swivel connection 35. A pivot pin 42 extends horizontally through the depending arms 34 for pivotally connecting the swivel connection 35 to the ankle member 12. A washer 37 bears between the plate 33 and the lower surface of the ankle member 12 as clearly shown in Fig. 2 of the drawings.
A nut 38 threadedly engages the upper end of the shaft 32 within the opening 19 at the lower portion of the leg member 10 and may be secured thereon by a cotter pin or any other suitable fastening means for holding the nut 38 against unauthorized movement while the artificial foot connection is being worn. A washer 39 is engaged between the lower surface of the nut 38 and the upper surface of the top wall 16 of the upper cup member 15. A lower spring 40 is engaged about the swivel connection between the foot 11 and the ankle 12 and encompasses both of the pivot members of the universal joint. The spring 40 bears at its upper end on the lower surface of the washer 37 and at its lower end on the upper surface of a lower washer 41 positioned between the plate 26 and the upper surface of the lower recess 25 in the foot.
The pin 31P in the universal joint: provides for the lateral pivotal movement of the ankle 12 relative to the foot 11 and the pin 42 provides for the pivoted movement, fore and aft, of the ankle 12 and leg 10 relative to the foot 11 thereby providing for the universal connection of the foot 11 to the leg 10.
The spring 23 provides for the downward extension or separation of the cup members 21 and 15 and also provides for the resilient support of any weight on the leg member 10 when that weight is exerted downwardly by a person wearing the artificial limb 10. The spring 40 also aids in resiliently supporting a weight, as the weight of a person wearing the artificial leg and the spring 40 also provides for the centering of the universal joint when the weight of the person is removed from the limb 10.
While the specific details of one embodiment of this invention have been herein shown and described, the invention is not confined thereto as changes and alterations may be made without departing from the spirit and scope thereof as defined in the appended claims.
1. An artificial leg comprising a lower leg member hollow at the lower end thereof, a cup having an upper Wall secured in the lower end of said. leg member and open at the lower side thereof, an artificial foot adjacent the lower end of the lower leg member, a shaft extending from said leg, an ankle member loosely mounted on said, shaft between said foot and the lower end of said lower leg member, a cup having a lower wall secured to said ankle member open at the upper end thereof and telescopically engaging in said cup on said lower leg member, resilient means in said cup constantly biasing said ankle from said lower legmember, a universal joint between and secured to the lower end of said shaft and said foot, resilient means between said foot and said ankle member biasing said foot downwardly relative to said lower leg member and said calf, each of said openings in said cup members being aligned for slidably receiving said shaft, and fastening means on the upper end of said shaft and engageable with the upper wall of said first mentioned cup for limiting the downward movement of said ankle and said foot rela- 15 tive to said leg member.
2. An artificial leg comprising a lower leg member hollow at the lower end thereof, a cup having an upper sliding movement on said shaft, said shaft extending through the cup at the lower end of said hollow leg member, a guiding member, carried by said ankle member fitted within the cup holding said ankle member and lower leg member in vertical alignment, a coiled spring surrounding a portion of said shaft and fitting between said ankle member and lower leg member normally biasing the ankle member and foot away from said lower leg member, and a yieldable member disposed between said ankle member and foot member normally biasing the foot member away from said ankle member.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 473,097 Tanner Apr. 19, 189% 1,090,327 Milligan Mar. 17, 1914\ FOREIGN PATENTS 318,075 Germany Jan. 10, 1920 327,423 Germany Oct. 13, 1920 804,830 Germany Apr. 30, 1951