US 2837824 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 10, 1958 E. B. MOLLER Filed March 19, 1956 AMALGAM CARRIER AND EJECTOR Q 'llllllllllll'l'll INVNTUR. Edward 5. /o//er AWR/ver United States rThis invention relates to improvements in a dental instrument and more particularly to an instrument of the type generally known as an amalgam carrier. Devices of this class are intended to provide convenient and accurate means for projecting lling material yinto the cavities of teeth.
It is well known that instruments of the class of this invention have been available to, and been used by, dentists over quite a period of years and also that such instruments, insofar as being capable of injecting amalgam into a tooth cavity is concerned, have served their purpose. However, several lling materials, in common usage, are diicult to maintain in such plasticity as to, at all times, be suitable for filling tooth cavities; that is, the tendency of some materials to a separation of their components in a short period of time, requires constant manipulation, the possible addition of an appropriate bonding substance, or the complete replacement with a fresh batch. Without the collaboration of an assistant, it is diicult in the extreme for a dentist to maintain an amalgam in suitable condition to enable filling several cavities. usable condition is by handmanipulation. This is 0bjectionable in that the material will have a tendency to acquire moisture from the hand and such moisture, when the cavity is filled, may create a painful condition during and after the amalgam has hardened in the cavity.
Currently available amalgam carriers appear to have a common objection in that they are capable of extruding only a very small quantity of amalgam with each load, and also that the method of loading consists of merely compacting the material into the ejection nozzle by repeatedly pressing the nozzle into a mound of the material when the plunger is withdrawn. Even in filling a single cavity it is necessary for the dentist to repeatedly loador have loaded the amalgam carrier since all of the material cannot be compacted into a given cavity with only one injection from the carrier. Thus the remaining amalgam is exposed to the air and tends to deteriorate even though manipulated in the manner above mentioned.
The present invention is directed to and has for one of its objects the provision of an amalgam carrier that is designed to contain and be capable of repeatedly extruding quantities of material suicient to ll a number of tooth cavities with only one loading thereof.
Another object of the invention lies in the provision of a carrier that is pre-loaded with an amalgam and preserves such amalgam prior to and during use in required plastic condition. Y
. A further object of the invention lies in the provision of a carrier that by the very act of loading and extrudi'ng has pre-formed the material for most convenient application to a tooth cavity. Y
Other and further objects of the invention will be more fully understood and appreciated from a consideration of the following specification, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing; in which One means of maintaining the amalgam in strument.
2,837,824 ,Patented June 10, 195g .in section, showing the amalgam container preparatory to insertion in its compartment within the carrier;
Fig. 4 is a transverse sectional view, taken substantially on the line 4-4 of Fig. 3;
Fig...5 is an enlarged transverse sectional view, taken substantially on the line 5 5 of Fig. 2 and shows one position ofthe amalgam container within the carrier cornpartment;
Fig. 6 is a View similar to Fig. 5 and shows the other position of the amalgam container in the carrier compartment;
Fig. 7 is a fragmentary horizontal sectional view taken substantially on the line 7--7 of Fig. 5, and shows the plunger in yfully retracted position preparatory to forcing amalgam from one passageway in the container; and
Fig. 8 is a view similar to Fig. 7, taken on the line 8-8 of Fig. 6 and shows the plunger Within one passageway of the container.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, the reference numeral 10 is employed to generally designate an amalgam carrier that embodies one yform Vof the present invention. For purposes of description, the carrier may be`considered as comprising a tubular or hollow member 11 which constitutes the body portion of the in- Approximately midway of its length is a v finger gripping collar 12. At one end ofl the member is a collar` 13 which is removable to permit insertion of a spring 14. One endof the spring seats against thereducedthreaded neck 16 of the member, whereas the other end is held within the member by securing the collar 13 thereto. Project-ing into the opening in the collar is a plunger 17. The diameter of the plunger is such that it will readily project through the spring 14 and into the threaded neck 16 (see Fig. 7). Of course, that portion of the plunger within the tubular member and adjacent the collar 13 is fitted with a pin or other suitable projection for engagement with the spring end and this serves as a means for placing the spring under tension when the plunger is moved into the member to the positionshown in solid or dotted lines in Fig. 2. The details of springing the plunger are old and well known in the art and, therefore, are' neither shown nor discussed in detail. The outer end of the plunger is fitted with a knob '18. Extending along the surface of the plunger from the knob isa spring latch 19. This latch will serve to hold the plunger in the position shown in lfull lines in Fig. 2 against tension of the spring 14. The purpose of this will be hereinafter brought out.
A unit 20 includes an internally threaded end 21, this end receiving the threaded end 16 of the tubular member 11. -The unit, by means of end walls 22 and 23, together with a connecting wall 24, provides a rectangular compartment 26. This compartment is further defined by a wall 2,7 that is hinged, as at 28, to the end walls and is movable into and out of parallel position with respect to wall 24 (see Figs. 4 and 5). A suitable" latch 29 is provided to secure wall 27 in closed position. When this wall is so closed, the compartment 26 is open on opposite sides. The wall 24 is provided with a transverse, elongated slot 31. It will be understood that openings in the end walls 22 and 23 are centered with the opening in the end 16. of the tubular member and, thus, the functioning end 32 of the plunger 17 may be projected through the compartment 26 and, in fact, into the end wall 22 Vof the operation.
thereof. Attached to the outer face of wall'22 is an ejection nozzle 33. The opening in .this nozzle, .of course, centers with the opening in wall 22. For convenience in use, the nozzle is curved. However, the particular curvature shown is not important t-o theinvention ibut ,is intended for convenience in use of the instrument.
An amalgam container 34 consists .of alhlockothat is generally AU-shaped in .cross section. VSecured centrallyY to the outer surface .of the `block base wall is `a lug 37, from which extends a short threaded shaft 138. The 'lug isfintended to fit within the slot 31 and -limit theextent of lateral movement of the 1container when mounted in the compartment 26. A Washer 39 and thumb nut 41 are engaged with the shaft 38, the nut, when tightened, serving to secure the container against movement within the compartment. The inner surface of the base wall of the block is formed -with a pair of semi-circular grooves ,42 that extend the Vfull block length. The outer side of each groove blends into the adjacent side wall 43 of the block and the dividing line between the grooves takes the form of a sharp rib 44. An insert 46 for the block is hinged at one end by a pin 47 to the block side walls 43. The upper face of this insert is formed with a pair of parallel semi-circular grooves 48. The dividing line between these grooves is also sharply defined. When the insert 46 is pivoted from the position of Fig. 3 into the block 36, the sharp dividing lines between the grooves meet and the two sets of semi-circular grooves form two circular passageways extending the full length of the block. As Vmay be observed in the exploded views (Figs. 3 and 4) the block may be placed in the compartment 26 when the door-like Wall 27 is in fully open position. Following insertion of theblock, the thumb nut is turned down and the wall 27 swung into closed position and latched.
For a clearer understanding of the advantages of the invention, a brief statement of the loading, assembly and operation of the instrument is set out. It may be assumed that an amalgam, vsuitable for filling the cavity of a tooth, has-been prepared. For convenience in handling, it is desirable that the container 34 is not removed from the compartment 26. Thus, to load the container with the prepared amalgam, it is only necessary to unlatch and swing open the wall 27, and swing the insert 46 into open position. A quantity of amalgam is placed in the block 36 and, when the insert is moved into closed position and the wall27 latched, the amalgam is compacted and completely, or at least substantially, lills the two cylindrical passageways. It will be understood that, due to the sharply defined edges of the grooves, the amalgam, when the insert is closed, is positively separated into two `cylindrical shaped masses in conformity with the shape of the passageways. Following closing the wall 27, the container is moved, for example, ,to the position shown in Fig. 5. In this position, the right-hand passageway is aligned with the opening of the tubular member and the opening of the nozzle. Sufficient tightness to prevent later-al dis'- placement of the block from such alignment is, of course, obtained by reason of the previously set tightness of the thumb nut. It will be noted that the amalgam is completely enclosed and, with the exception of air that might reach it through the open-ended nozzle, little or no physical change may take place, since it is not exposed to the airV as would be the case if the amalgam were left in the mixing tray or dish. It may also be assumed that this simple loading operation has been performed by a dental assistant, who now moves the plunger 17 from the position of Fig. 1 to that of Fig. 2.L Of course, such` movement is against tension ofthe spring 14 and requires 4operation of the spring latch 19 to prevent withdrawal of Vthe plunger. This movement of theplurxger has caused the functional end thereof to project into'and through the fullv length of oneV of the amalgam passageways. A comparison of Figs. 7 and 8 will disclose this. part The amalgam contained'in this one passageway has been forced by the plunger end 32 into 4 the nozzle 33, substantially filling it. The assistant now .hands the `instrument to the dentist who is now able, by further movement of the plunger, to inject a given quantity i of amalgam into a tooth cavity. If the quantity of amalgam that was originally placed in one of the passageways has become used up, it is merely necessary to release the plunger, allowing the spring 14 to withdraw it to the position of Fig. 1. The amalgam container is now moved laterally within the compartment 26 from the position of Fig. 5 5to that'of Fig. 6 and by so doing, the remaining loaded passageway is aligned with the plunger end and the nozzle. Repeated inward movement of the plunger now forces the amalgam from the other passageway into the nozzle and, of course, is available at the nozzle end for injection into a tooth cavity.
It is pointed out that in keeping with the purpose of the invention to provide a quickly loaded and easily manipulatable amalgam carrier, the amalgam container is not removed from the carrier, the exception, of course, being on occasion when it may become necessary to clean the entire instrument. Thus, it may again be stated that the present invention provides an amalgam carrier for dental use that is pre-loaded and with such a quantity of amalgam as may be used by a dentist in filling several cavities and within the time in which the amalgam continues to Vbe of desired plasticity and consistency.
From the foregoing it will be evident that the amalgam carrier and ejector provide closed compartments for an amalgam prior to and during a tooth filling operation. Also, it will be clear that when the block 36 is loaded, the amalgam is compacted in the passageways to an extent that any excess mixing element thereof is squeezed or compressed out of it. With particular reference to silver lling material, mercury would thus be removed to required extent. Thus, the amalgam, when ejected,
is of the most satisfactory consistency for filling a cavity. It will be apparent that due to confinement of the amalgam, a dentist may lay the instrument down and later, as. required, again use it without the consistency of the amalgam deteriorating to an extent to render it unusable due to exposure to the air or the possibility of added moisture as a result of finger manipulation.
Although applicant has shown and described only one form of the invention, it will be apparent that the particular amalgam container may be modified to include more than the two passageways shown and that the method of mounting the amalgam container in the instrument may also be modified, these modifications being contemplated as being within the spirit and scope of the invention insofar as they are set out in the annexed claims.
Having thus set forth my invention, what I claim as new and for which I desire protection by Letters Patent 1s:
1. A carrier and extruding instrument for dental practice comprising a tubular member, a plunger projecting into one end of said member and being movable to extend beyond the other end thereof, walls extending from said other end forming a compartment, an ejector nozzle at theA end of said compartment remote from said member, the openings in said member and said nozzle being in alignment, a container mounted in said compartment, said 4container having an amalgam receiving passageway and being movable within said compartment to align said passageway with the openings in said member and said nozzle whereby movement of said plunger in one direction Will extrude amalgam from said nozzle.
2. A carrier and extruding instrument for dental practise comprising a tubular member, a plunger projecting into one end of said memberand being movable to extend beyond the other end thereof, walls extending from said other end forming a compartment, an ejector nozzle at the end of said compartment remote from said member, the openings in said member and said nozzle being in alignment, an amalgam container mounted in said compartment, cooperating grooved parts of said 4container providing a passageway extending the length thereof, and
means for securing said corainer in a position within said compartment to align said passageway with the openings in said member and said nozzle whereby said plunger may 'be moved into said container t-o extrude amalgam, contained therein, from said nozzle.
3. A carrier and extruding instrument for dental practise comprising atubular member, a plunger projecting into and being movable in the direction of the length of said member, walls forming a compartment at one end of said member, an ejection nozzle beyond said compartment, a closure operable to give access to the interior of said compartment, and an amalgam container in said compartment, said container being adjustable Within said compartment to .be aligned with said plunger and said nozzle and enable ejection of amalgam from said nozzle by movement of said plunger into said container.
4. A carrier and extruding instrument for dental practise comprising 'a tubular member, a plunger projecting into one end of said member and being movable to extend beyond the other end thereof, walls forming a compartment at one end :of said member, a securable access door for said compartment, a nozzle joined to and opening int-o said compartment, an amalgam container mounted in said compartment, parallel passageways extending the length of said container, means mounting said container to enable adjustment thereof within said compartment to register any of said passageways with the openings in said member and said nozzle.
5. A carrier and extruding instrument for dentalr practise comprising a tubular member, a plunger project-f ing into one end of said member and being movable to extend beyond the other end thereof, Walls forming 'a compartment lat one end of said member, :an amalgam container in said compartment, Walls forming parallel passageways extending the length of said container, said passageways being split transversely of their length and consisting of separable parts of said container, and means `enabling adjustment of said container within said compartment whereby to register any of said passageways with the opening in said member.
6. A carrier and extruding instrument for dental practise comprising `a tubular member, a plunger projecting into one end of said member and being movable to extend beyond the lother end thereof, walls forming a compartment at one end of sai-d member, `au amalgam container in said compartment, said container consisting of a pair of interlitting parts, each of said parts having parallel longitudinal semi-circular grooves, said grooves, when said parts are intertted, forming end opening passageways, and means enabling adjustment of said container to register any of said passageways with the opening in said member.
7. A carri-er and extruding instrument for ydental use comprising a tubular member, a plunger projecting into one end of said mem'ber and being movable to extend beyond the other end thereof, a compartment at the other end of said member, an ejector nozzle at the end of said compartment remote from said member, the openings in said member and said nozzle being in alignment, an amalgam container in said compartment, Walls forming parallel passageways extending throughout the effective length of said container, means mounting said -container for adjustment to register any of said passageways with said nozzle and member openings and further means for gaining access to said container to insert an amalgam.
References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,066,966 Wettstine Iuly 8, 1913 1,852,658 Kile Apr. 5, 1932 FOREIGN PATENTS 613,874 France Sept. 6, 1926