US 2707469 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
u'rrous May 3, 1955 R. R. F EINSTEIN STERILE SEALED DROPPER UNIT FOR OPHTHALMOLOGICAL SOL Filed April 6, 1954 INVENTOR. Ross/em FEIVSTtf/N A TTORNE Y United States Patent STERILE SEALED DROPPER UNIT FOR OPHTHALMOLGGICAL SOLUTIONS Robert R. Feinstein, Brooklyn, N. Y., assignor to Ophthalmos, Inc., Union City, N. J., a corporation of New Jersey I Application April 6, 1954, Serial No. 421,342 Claims. (Cl. 128-233) This invention relates to a sterile sealed dropper unit for ophthalmological solutions particularly useful for the treatment of diseases of the eye, surgery of the eye, and wherever a laceration of ocular tissue has occurred, and more particularly to such a unit which serves both as a container and an applicator.
it is Well known that great care must be exercised in connection with the application of pharmaceuticals to the very sensitive structure of the human eye not only because of the delicate and sensitive nature of the eye tissues which are susceptible to infection by Ps. aeruginosa, an organism which may cause loss of vision or the eye itself, but because it is extremely important to employ sterile materials and avoid contamination, because eye solutions are excellent culture media for Ps. aeruginos'a. The usual practice is to prepare ophthalmological solutions and place them in a multi-dosage bottle provided with an eye dropper. While such an arrangement may be sterile at the outset, it does not remain sterile after the first use, and this has been found to be both disadvantageous and somewhat dangerous since it is highly inadvisable to apply to the eye any material which is not sterile especially in surgery.
it is, accordingly, an object of the present invention to provide for the first time a sterile sealed dropper unit which serves both as container and as applicator and which will remain sterile and deliver a single dose of sterile ophthalmic solution throughout the period of its use.
Another object of the invention resides in the provision of a sterile sealed dropper unit which can be quickly and easily converted from a container to an applicator by cutting off the tip of one of the rubber members forming a portion of the unit to provide a discharge opening.
A further and more specific object of the invention is to provide a sterile sealed dropper unit for ophthalmological solutions, which comprises a tubular glass body portion, a bulb-like member at one end thereof and a tip member at the other end thereof, the said bulb-like and tip members being provided with annular recesses for the snug reception of the ends of the body member and all the surfaces of these members with which the ophthalmological solution may come into contact being provided with a thin inert coating of a plastic material, such as a silicone.
In the accompanying drawing:
Fig. l is an enlarged elevational view of a sterile sealed dropper unit constructed in accordance with the invention;
Fig. 2 is a vertical, medial, sectional view through Fig. 1;
Fig. 3 is an enlarged medial sectional view through the bulb-like member at one end of the unit;
Fig. 4 is an enlarged medial sectional view through the tip member at the other end of the unit;
Fig. 5 is a plan view looking downwardly upon Fig. 1;
Fig. 6 is a bottom plan view looking upwardly from beneath Fig. l and Fig. 7 is a fragmentary medial sectional view taken through the tip member of Fig. 2 after the removal of all) 2,707,469 Patented May 3, 1955 the apical portion of the tip member and showing, in broken lines, the removed material.
Referring now to the drawings in detail, the numeral 10 designates a tubular or cylindrical body member preferaby, but not necessarily, composed of glass and within which the ophthalmological solution is contained in the completed unit. It has been found that Pyrexi. e., borosilicate glass-is best and is, therefore, preferred, but that the member 10 may be made of any other suitable material which can be sterilized and which is completely inert and free from contamination with respect to the solution contained therein. While member 10 is preferably transparent, the invention is not to be deemed as limited to the use of a transparent member only since, optionally, a translucent or even an opaque member can be employed, but a transparent member is preferred because the solution can be readily observed therethrough.
At one end of member 10 a bulb-like member 11 is provided which, as will be understood, is used to expel solution from the unit at the appropriate time by exerting transverse compressive pressure thereon. Bulb-like member 11 is preferably made of rubber but may optionally be composed of other suitable flexible, resilient, sterilizable materials. Bulb-like member 11 has a central or intermediate portion which is of substantially cylindrical shape and terminates at one end in an integral hemispheri cal portion 12. The other end of member 11 is thickened and of substantially cylindrical form, as designated at 12, and has an annular recess 13 concentric with portion 12 and adapted to receive snugly one end of the body member 10 and to hold it firmly in position in liquidtight manner.
A tip member 14 of the same material as member 11 is provided at the other end of the unit and consists of a thickened cylindrical portion 15 provided with an annular recess 16 concentric thereto similarly to portions 12 and 13 of the member 11. The remainder of the tip member 14 is an integral tapering portion 17 terminating in an apical portion 18 and, as will be clear from Figs. 2 and 4, the apical end of member 14 is normally closed so that there is no discharge opening. The apical portion 18 is, it will be observed, of reduced diameter as compared with the remainder of the tip member 14 and has a notched, indented or otherwise marked portion 19 at which the apical portion is transversely cut off and only after such cutting operation is there a discharge orifice or opening 26, as will be clear from Fig. 7.
The surfaces of the bulb-like member 11 and the tip member 14 with which the ophthalmological solution comes into contact are provided with a thin inert protective coating 21. This coating 21 not only keeps the solution out of physical contact with the rubber bulb-like and tip members, thereby avoiding any possible attack upon these members by the solution, but contributes importantly to the maintenance of sterile conditions within the completed unit and at the same time overcomes any porosity of the members 11 and 14, and also adds some strength to, and increases the durability of, the rubber members. The coating material 21 may be any suitable synthetic plastic material which is applied to the indicated surfaces after manufacture thereof and is preferably a relatively hard, inert, smooth and non-porous silicone resin, although other synthetic plastic coatings may also be satisfactorily employed. The coating 21 may be applied in any suitable or known manner forming per so no part of, or limitation upon, the invention.
Any suitable or desired ophthalmological solution is introduced into the member 10 after the tip member 14 is in place and, when the member 10 has been filled with the desired amount of solution, the member 11 is then applied in the position shown in Fig. 2. The entire unit can then be further sterilized, it being understood that the parts and the solution are all sterile in the beginning so as to avoid the possibility of contamination or the introduction of any extraneous source of infection into the eye during use of the unit. The sterile sealed dropper unit serves not only as a container for the solution and as a container in which the solution may be satisfactorily shipped and stored but, when the solution is to be used, the unit can be readily and simply converted into a dropper by cutting or otherwise removing the apical portion 18 aforesaid so as to provide at that time the discharge opening for egress of the solution from the unit upon compression of member 11. Since it is usually desired that only very small drops of ophthalmological solution be applied to the eye, it will be noted that the discharge opening or orifice 20 formed in the tip member 14 after removal of the apical portion 18 is or can be very small.
While the invention has been particularly described as a sterile sealed dropper unit for ophthalmological solutions, it is to be understood that solutions other than ophthalmological solutions may be thus packaged wherever it is desired to ensure sterility and to discharge small drops under bacterially safe conditions. The construction described above and illustrated in the drawing is to be deemed as typical or representative and not as limitative since certain variations therein may be resorted to within the terms of the appended claims.
The complete assembled sterile sealed dropper unit is externally asepticized before use by the physician by means of alcohol or an organic mercury compound in solution, such as sodium ethylmercurithiosalicylate. This may be carried out, for example, by immersing the units in the asepticizing agent and then drying. It is further to be understood that the ophthalmological solution within the unit may be of any desired or preferred composition, such as is commonly used by ophthalmologists, namely, pilocarpine hydrochloride, sodium propionate, methylcellulose, phenylephrine hydrochloride, eucatropine hydrochloride, zinc sulfate, tetracaine hydrochloride and fluorescein sodium, but the specific nature of the ophthalmological solution or active ingredient thereof does not constitute a limitation upon the invention.
1. A sterile sealed dropper unit for ophthalmological solutions comprising a tubular glass body member, a rubber bulb-like member having an annular recess within which one end of said body member is snugly received and a rubber tip member having an annular recess within which the other end of the body member is snugly received, said rubber tip member being normally closed at its discharge end and having a terminal portion adapted to be cut off to provide a discharge opening when the unit is in use.
2. A sterile sealed dropper unit as claimed in claim l in which the tubular body member is composed of hero silicate glass.
3. A sterile sealed dropper unit as claimed in claim 1 in which those surfaces of the rubber members with which the solution comes into contact are provided with a thin, inert coating of a synthetic plastic.
4. A sterile sealed dropper unit as claimed in claim 1 in which those surfaces of the rubber members with which the solution comes into contact are provided with a thin, inert coating of a silicone.
5. In a sterile dropper unit for an ophthalmological solution, a rubber tip member consisting of a generally cylindrical portion having an annular recess therein concentric therewith and an integral portion extending there from and tapering to a closed apical end, the closed apical end being constructed to be cut olf to provide a discharge opening, and those surfaces of the said member with which the solution comes into contact being provided with a silicone coating.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,699,965 Herzog Jan. 22, 1929 2,072,366 Hein Mar. 2, 1937 2,573,637 Bender Oct. 30, 1951