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Publication numberUS2854968 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 7, 1958
Filing dateApr 15, 1957
Priority dateApr 15, 1957
Publication numberUS 2854968 A, US 2854968A, US-A-2854968, US2854968 A, US2854968A
InventorsWright Gilbert M
Original AssigneeWright Gilbert M
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Indicating and signaling device for circulatory systems and the like
US 2854968 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

G. M. WRIGHT 9 INDICATING .AND SIGNALING DEVICE FOR CIRCULATORY Fild .April l5 1957 SYSTEMS AND THE LIKE 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 if n INVENTOR. f/WM KWB/@wf d 7, 195 G. M. WRIGHT INDICATING AND SIGNALING DEVICE FDR CIRCULATDRY SYSTEMS AND THE LIKE Filed April 15, 1957 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Patented Oct. 7, 1958 INDICATING AND SIGNALING DEVICE FOR CIRCULATORY SYSTEMS AND THE LIKE Gilbert M. Wright, Malibu, Calif. Application April 15, 1957, Serial No. 652,732

9 Claims. (Cl. 12S-2.05)

'Ihe present invention is particularly directed to light weight portable devices capable of being worn by a human or other animate animal for the purpose of indicating or signaling when the rhythmic pulsations of the circulatory system of such human or animal reach a predetermined frequency. In addition the devices of the present invention are capable of being used for the purpose of indicating or signaling whenever pulsations ot relatively small magnitude reach a preselected frequency.

Hundreds of thousands of persons suer from various forms of diseases of the heart or of the circulatory system and their lives depend upon adherence to rules which preclude overeXertion, excitement, overindulgence in tobacco or alcohol, etc., which may impose additional strain on their heart and cause a breakdown of compensation and possibly fatal results. Although these thousands of patients have been carefully instructed to conduct themselves in such a way as to prevent increase in their pulse rate beyond a maximum, it is almost irnpossible for these patients to be constantly checking their own pulse rates. As a result many patients suifer attacks caused by inadvertence; they have overexerted themselves or have become so engrossed in a discussion or argument as to forget the effect being caused thereby upon their pulse rate.

The present invention is primarily directed to a very light weight portable device capable of being worn on the wrist in much the same way that a wrist watch is worn, this device containing a control assembly having a preselected resonant characteristic. It is also provided with a sensing element adapted to receive the rhythmic pulsations of the pulse and transmitting the energy of the pulse to the control assembly. The device also includes alarm or signal means which are energized when the frequency of the pulses transmitted thereto reaches a preselected resonant characteristic of the control assembly. In other words the device of the present invention is capable of being worn by a patient and when such patients pulse rate reaches a preselected rate (say 85 or 90 per minute) the patient is actually notified by the device that his pulse rate has reached the preselected maximum and he better rest or stop doing whatever he is doing which has caused his pulse rate to increase to such dangerous proportions.

Furthermore, the device may be set so that in the event the pulse rate reaches a dangerously slow rate (as in certain cases of bradycardia) the device will energize the signal means; Devices of the character contemplated by this invention may be readily attached to bedridden patients as in a hospital and the signal means may be located at a central desk, as for example in the dispensary or nurses room for the purpose of signaling to the nurse or attendant that the pulse rate of a particular patient in a particular bed has either reach a preselected maximum or has dropped to a dangerously low rate.

It is an object of the present invention, therefore, to disclose and provide a simple light weight portable" signaling device which utilizes the energy of the rhythmic pulsations of the circulatory system and operates a signal or alarm means when the frequency of such pulsations reaches a predetermined value.

Another object of the invention is to disclose and provide a simple and effective device capable of being worn by a human for the purpose of indicating when the pulse rate of such human has reached a preselected frequency.

Again an object of the invention is to disclose and provide a light weight and portable device including a control assembly having a preselected resonance characteristic, such device being adapted to receive rhythmic pulsations of small magnitude and when such pulsations so received reach a frequency correlated to the resonance characteristic of the control assembly, then said control assembly actuates or energizes a signaling means. These and various other objects, advantages and modifications o-f the present invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art from the following description of certain exemplary forms of devices utilizing the mode of operation herein contemplated for the purposes herein set forth.

In the drawings:

Fig. l is a plan View, portions being broken away, of one form of signalling device adapted to be worn on the wrist in the manner of a wrist watch.

Fig. 2 is a transverse section taken along the stepped plane II-II in Fig. 1.

Fig. 3 is a plan view of a modied form of device.

Fig. 4 is a transverse section taken along the plane IV--IV in Fig. 3.

Fig. 5 is a horizo-ntal section taken along V-V in Fig. 4.

Fig. 6 is a side elevation, portions being broken away.

Fig. 7 is a transverse section taken along the plane VII-VII in Fig. 5.

Fig. 8 diagrammatically illustrates a still further modification.

The form of device illustrated in Figs. l and 2 comprises a case 1 which may consist of a lower portion 2 and an upper portion, generally indicated at 3, said upper portion being adapted to receive and hold a protective, transparent cover 4. The sensing element in this form of device comprises a hydraulic means, more particularly a resilient, eXible diaphragm 5 connected to the lower portion 2 of the case as by means of a suitable sealing ring 6. This diaphragm (adapted to rest against a patient so as to sense the pulsations in a vein, diagrammatically illustrated at V) forms one wall of a chamber 7 containing a suitable hydraulic fluid, said chamber being provided with an upwardly directed conduit 8 terminating in a horizontally directed portion 9, such horizontally directed portion of the conduit containing a slidable piston 10 adapted to move in accordance with volumetric changes of the chamber 7 caused by deformation of the diaphragm 5 in response to rhythmic pulsations in the vein V. It will be noted that the diameter of the conduit 8 9 is very small in comparison with the volumetric capacity of the chamber 7, so that relatively minor changes in the size of chamber 7 are reflected as amplified movements of the piston 10. In order to completely fill the chamber 7 and the conduit S with hydraulic iluid and in order to properly adjust the device, the ller opening is provided with a large, adjustable plug 11. It will be evident that by adjustably positioning the threaded plug 11 the volumetric capacity of the chamber 7 and the piston 10 may be modified.

A balance wheel 12 having a rim of considerable mass is mounted in suitable bearings, such as 13, carried by the horizontal partition 14, and an upper bearing 15 carried by the horizontal partition 16 of the upper portion of the case portion 3. The balance Wheel has a hair spring 17, one end of which is connected to the rim and the plane the other to the centrally disposed axle which is journaled in the bearings 13 and 15. The rim of the balance wheel is shown provided with two protuberances, preferably diametrically opposed, one of such protuberances or lugs 18 being normally positioned within striking distance of the piston 10. The other protuberance 19 is adapted to strike a key 20 connected to a relatively thin Wall portion 21 of the upper case por-tion 3.

Adjustably mounted upon the upper end of the stationary bearing is a knob 25 provided with an index member or pointer 26. This pointer may carry a downwardly extending forked element 27 adapted to straddle one spiral portion of the spiral recoil spring 17 of the balance wheel. This forked element 27 preferably extends through an arcuate opening 28 formed in the upper partition 16. The upper surface of this partition 16 carries indicia in visual relation to the pointer 26 and, as indicated in Fig. l, such indicia may consist of the numbers 80, 85, 90, 95, or the like, such numbers representing a pulse rate at which the instrument is set to respond.

lt will be evident, therefore, that the -instrument comprises a sensing element responsive to the pulsations of a vein, transmits such pulsations in the form of small hammer blows delivered by the piston 1t) upon the lug 18 to the resonant control assembly or balance wheel and when the frequency of the pulsations so imparted to the control assembly or balance wheel reaches the resonant characteristic of the control assembly, the balance wheel will oscillate to its maximum amplitude and deliver blows by the striker 19 against the key 20. The tapping noise thus generated is amplified by the very thin diaphragm wall 21 and the patient wearing the device is therefore audibly and physically warned that his pulse rate has reached the maximum determined by -the position of the index member 26. It is to be understood that movement of the index member 26 to any desired or preselected position with respect to the indicia automatically changes the resonant characteristics of the control assembly or balance wheel by effectively limiting the active length of the coil-recoil spring 17.

The sensing element need not be of hydraulic type as illustrated in Figs. l and 2, nor is it necessary to employ a coil-recoil spring as a control assembly. Figs. 3 to 7, inclusive, illustrate a form of device where a mechanical sensing element is employed and a resilient rod or wire is used as the control assembly.

As illustrated in Figs. 3 to 7, the case 31 may be provided with a contoured, concave lower surface 32 adapted to more or less conform to the contours of a wrist. The bottom wall of the case 31 is provided with a rectangular or other suitably shaped aperture 33 in which a sensing element in the form of a rectangular block 34 is yieldably held as by means of two fiat spring elements 35 and 36, one end of such element being firmly attached to a mounting block 37 and the other end of each spring extending into a channel such as 38 formed in the sensing block 34. Normally the sensing block presents a lower surface extending slightly beyond the surface 32 and is of a width and length to permit ready positioning above a vein.

The mounting block 37 is also provided with an arm 39 having an aperture therein adapted to slidably receive an upstanding post 40 carried by the sensing block 34. The upper end of such post 40 is pivotally connected to a lever arm 41, the lever being pivoted about a fulcrum post 42.

The control assembly comprises a resilient rod 43 having one end firmly connected to the case .as at 44. ln many instances it is desired that the relatively free end of the rod 43 be provided with an added mass, indicated at 45, and terminate in a thinner, more iiexible portion 46. As best shown in Figs. 6 and 7, the free end of lever 41 is adapted to strike against the end portion 46 of the control rod 43. It will be evident, therefore, that the sensing element 34 will respond to the rhythmic pulsa- 4 tions of the pulse and transmit such pulsations inthe form of light blows to the end of the control rod 43. The control rod has a preselected resonant characteristic and when the rod is subjected to a series of such periodical impulses properly timed or at the desired frequency, a vibration of large amplitude will be generated in the control rod 43, the end of the rod becoming the antinode.

In order to vary the resonant characteristic of the control assembly or rod 43, the side Wall of the case 31 includes an adjustment roller 48 provided with a pair of spaced, slotted arms 49 and 49. Slidably movable about the rod 43 is a ring 50 provided with upper and lower arms extending through the slots of the slotted arms 49 and 49. Partial rotation of the adjustment roller 48 will therefore move the damping ring S0 along the control rod 43, thereby varying its resonant characteristic. The upper end of adjustment roller 48 is provided with a pointer or index element S2 extending above horizontal partition 53. Along `an arcuate path adjacent the end of the pointer 52 are indicia, such as the numbers 70, 75, 80, 85, 90, indicating the resonant characteristic of the control assembly as determined by said pointer and the location of the damping ring 50 along the length of the rod 43. In this manner the instrument may be said to respond to any desired pulse rate from 70 to 90 or any other pulse rate within the range of frequency to which the element 43 is adapted to respond.

The upper end of the control element 43 may be caused to tap against the cover or partition 53, or it may be set to actuate any desired signalling means or the like. Those skilled in the art will readily appreciate that while vibrating at a resonant frequency the upper end of rod 43 may energize an electrical circuit by closing a microswitch, or it may actuate a trigger, latch, or other means designed to place an audible or visible signal in operation. The form of device illustrated herein includes a relatively strong spring contained within a cylindrical housing indicated at 60, such housing containing a coiled, ribbon spring, one end being attached to the inner wall of the cylindrical housing 60 and the other to a fixed, centrally disposed pin 61. A portion of the cylindrical surface of the housing extends through a suitable partition formed in the side wall of the case so that the wearer of the device may wind the spring by simply rotating the exposed portion of the housing 60. The wound spring is held in wound position by means of a pivoted dog 62 which is lightly urged against the serrations of the outer wall of the cylindrical housing 60 by a light spring. This dog is automatically released when the control assembly or rod 43 has been set into its resonant frequency by the pulse transmitted to it. Such means may comprise a lever 63 pivoted at 64, such lever having a connection with a spring-biased block 65 slidable in a guideway and provided with an upstanding lip 66 at one end. The block 65 is urged into operative position by means of a spring 67 but is normally retained in inoperative position by the end of a lever 68 pivoted at 69, the free end 70 of such lever being beneath the mass 45 of the control rod 43. It may be noted that the block 65 is provided with an adjustment button 71 extending through a suitable slot in the wall of the case. When the control rod 43 reaches its maximum amplitude, it strikes the free end 70 of the lever 68, causing the lever to disengage from engagement with lip 66 of block 65, permitting'the spring 67 to forcibly move the block 65 and lever 63 about its pivot point 64 so as to disengage the dog 62. The wound spring so released rapidly rotates the cylindrical housing 60, causing protuberances such as 73 to strike the end wall 76. This end wall 76 may be made of resonating metal to thereby produce a relatively loud, ringing sound, audibly warning the wearer that his pulse rate is at a dangerous frequency. The instrument can then be reset by movement of the control button 71 so as to cause re-engagement of the lip 66 of block 65 with the end of lever 68 and the spring within housing 60 may be readily rewound.

Those skilled in the art will appreciate from the examples herein given that the instrument may be of any desired size, can be preset to any desired frequency of incoming pulses and may be caused to operate a great variety of signalling devices. Those skilled in the art will further observe that various arrangements and materials may be used. The control element may be of any desired metal or of suitable plastic, such as a methacrylate, styrene polymer, glass, etc.; it may be coiled, bent or in rod form. In some instances the control element may be designed to energize the signal only at its inherent, natural and resonant frequency, while in other instances the device may be provided with tuning means (such as the fork 27 or damping ring 50) operated by the adjusting knob and its pointer, so as to obtain a signal at any one of a number of desired frequencies or pulse rates. The device is not limited to a given range of frequencies; the control assembly may be preselected to respond and energize a signal at any desired frequency and can be used to signal when vibration of an object reaches a predetermined frequency. It may be noted that amplitude of incoming pulses is not critical and only their frequency causes the device to respond.

The device may also include and utilize electrical means to perform the desired functions. In the diagrammatic representation, Fig. 8, the sensing element 34 moved by the pulse, moves the permanent magnet Si? within coil 8l which is connected to coil 82. The current generated in coil 81 therefore passes through coil 82 which slidably receives magnet 83 of the control assembly which includes spring 84 connected to the magnet and adjustably positionable pointer 85, position of the pointer determining the frequency at which movable magnet will respond and reciprocate to strike signal element 76.

All changes and modifications coming within the scope of the appended claims are embraced thereby.

l. A lightweight signaling device adapted to respond to and be energized by rhythmic pulsations when such pulsations reach a predetermined frequency, comprising: a housing; a sensing element carried by the housing and adapted to receive the rhythmic pulsations of small magnitude; a control assembly having a preselected resonance frequency characteristic and including a resilient member and selectively adjustable means for tuning said resilient member to a preselected resonance frequency characteristic; means for transmitting pulsations received by the sensing element to the control assembly; and signal means energized by the control assembly when the frequency of pulses transmitted thereto reaches the preselected resonance characteristic of the control assembly.

2. A lightweight alarm device adapted to be worn 'cy a human and respond to and be energized by a predetermined pulse rate in the circulatory system of the human, comprising: a housing; a sensing element carried by the housing and adapted to receive rhythmic pulsations from a portion of the circulatory system of a human; a control assembly including a resilient member; adjustable means for tuning said resilient member to a selected resonance frequency characteristic; means for transmitting pulsations received by the sensing element to the control assembly; and alarm means energized by the control assembly when the frequency of pulses transmitted thereto reaches the preselected resonance characteristic of the control assembly.

3. A device as stated in claim 2 wherein the sensing element includes a body of fluid retained by a resilient wall of the housing, said wall being adapted to be placed in operative contact with a vein of the circulatory system.

4. A lightweight portable signaling device adapted to be energized by a predetermined pulse rate in the circulatory system of a human, comprising: a housing; a coil-recoil spring provided with a rim and mounted for oscillation about an axis in said housing; means for imparting force impulses to the rim of said recoil spring in timed relation to rhythmic contraction and expansion of a portion of a circulatory system of a human, including a sensing element carried by the housing and responsive to the pulse rate in the circulatory system; means for amplifying the response of said sensing element and applying such amplied response to the forceimparting means; and signal-energizing means carried by said rim and becoming effective to energize a signal when said rim is at resonant frequency.

5. A device as stated in claim l, including mechanical means for amplifying the pulsations received by the sensing element and transmitted to the control assembly.

6. A device as stated in claim 1, including hydraulic means for amplifying the pulsations received by the sensing element and transmitted to the control assembly.

7. A device as stated in claim 1, including a housing and wherein the signal means comprises a resonant portion of the housing adapted to be struck by the control assembly when at resonant frequency.

8. A light weight, portable device adapted to be worn oy a human to indicate rhythmic contractions ingthe circulatory system comprising: a coiled recoil spring provided with a rim and mounted for oscillation about an axis; means for imparting force impulses to the rim of said recoil spring in timed relation to rhythmic contraction and expansion of a portion of the circulatory system of a human, said means including a sensing element responsive to contraction and expansion of the circulatory system and means for amplifying the response of said sensing element and applying such amplified response to the force imparting means; means including an index member adjustably positionable with respect to said recoil spring for varying the resonance characteristics of said spring; indicia in visual relation to said index member, and signal energizing means operable by said spring and rim at resonance frequency established by said index member.

9. A device as stated in claim 8, wherein the sensing element includes a body of fluid retained by a resilient wall adapted to be placed in operative contact with a vein of the circulatory system, and the force-imparting means comprises a piston movable by the body of fluid.

References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 596,293 Woodworth Dec. 28, 1897 1,675,799 Goldschmidt July 3, 1928 1,675,800 Goldschmidt July 3, 1928

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US596293 *Mar 29, 1897Dec 28, 1897 woodworth
US1675799 *Jan 7, 1926Jul 3, 1928Rudolf GoldschmidtMechanism for measuring the frequency of the pulse
US1675800 *Sep 8, 1926Jul 3, 1928 goldschmidt
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2966795 *Oct 31, 1957Jan 3, 1961Nat Res DevPressure measuring apparatus
US3040737 *Dec 10, 1959Jun 26, 1962Honeywell Regulator CoBlood pressure measuring transducer
US3135264 *Jun 14, 1961Jun 2, 1964Electronics Aids IncHeart monitor-automatic control device
US3138151 *Jun 11, 1962Jun 23, 1964Chapman Robert LDetector and alarm ventricular impulses
US3144018 *Mar 23, 1961Aug 11, 1964Chemetron CorpCardial conitor apparatus
US3154066 *Oct 11, 1961Oct 27, 1964Robert L GannonBody function sensors
US3154067 *Oct 11, 1961Oct 27, 1964Robert L GannonBody function sensor
US3268845 *Sep 21, 1965Aug 23, 1966Whitmore Henry BRespiration and movement transducer
US3535067 *Mar 7, 1967Oct 20, 1970Electro O Mech IncBlood pressure and pulse indicator
US3667213 *Dec 11, 1970Jun 6, 1972Measurement Science CorpPulse, respiration and intravenous rate counter
US3838684 *Mar 7, 1973Oct 1, 1974Manuel BCardiac monitor
US4009708 *May 29, 1975Mar 1, 1977Fay Jr John JPulse rate recorder
US4086916 *Sep 19, 1975May 2, 1978Joseph J. CayreCardiac monitor wristwatch
US4252128 *Aug 27, 1979Feb 24, 1981Kane Donald DVisual pulse indicator
US4657025 *Mar 25, 1985Apr 14, 1987Carl OrlandoHeart and breathing alarm monitor
US4928702 *Apr 20, 1987May 29, 1990Cousin Bernard MDevice for picking off and evaluating a pressure, in particular a pressure of a fluid
US7341561 *May 24, 2004Mar 11, 2008Casio Computer Co., Ltd.Wrist-worn high-accuracy pulsation measuring apparatus
US20040243009 *May 24, 2004Dec 2, 2004Casio Computer Co., Ltd.Wrist-worn high-accuracy pulsation measuring apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification600/503
International ClassificationA61B5/024
Cooperative ClassificationA61B5/024, A61B5/02438
European ClassificationA61B5/024, A61B5/024F