US 2958012 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct; 1960 G. J. MELMAN ETAL 2,958,012
I CONDUCTIVE OVERSHOE Fil .ed Nov. '3. 1958 I mentor Gem 6 g ICZJTZQJZ an 2 H. k522i fittomagy United States Patent 2,958,012 I 'CONDUCTIVE ovERsHoE George 1. Melman and Louis S. Epstein, Wilmington, DeL, assignors to George Melman & Co.
Filed Nov. 3, 1958, Ser. No. 771,623 6 Claims. (Cl. 317-2) Inmany areas such'as the operation rooms of 'hospi-- 2,958,012 Patented Oct. 25, 1960 position, the top sections being spread apart to expose a portion of the inside sole; v Figure 2 is a similar view, in partially folded position showing the bottom of the sole;
Figure 3 is a side elevation, partly in section showing the overshoe on the foot of a wearer; and
Figure 4 is a sectional detail of Figure 3.
As can be seen in Figure l, the overshoe 1 of this invention has an upper, leg encasing section 2 which is composed of one piece of material the ends of which overlap as shown at 3 in Figure I. The taper of the ends at 4 and 5 are such that the overlapping extends to the top 6 of the article. Therefore, the overshoe completely envelops the foot and a portion of the leg, for the bottom overlap at 3 and the continuous overlap running up the sides prevent any exposure. The height of the overshoe may be varied to meet the need.
tals, communicable disease wards and nurseries, it is desired to have doctors, nurses and other attendants move about freely but to do so without exposing patients to infectious matter such as bacteria, viruses and similar agents. Precautions are taken as is well known and as is well established in the use, for example, of masks, gowns and gloves by those attendants. However, little attention has been given to the feet as a source of infectious matter coming into the areas that are to be kept uncontaminated. Further, it has recently been found that infectious matter can be carried away from these areas. To illustrate, while considerable care is'taken to conduct aseptic surgery, pathogenic microorganisms can be and frequently are introduced in and about the area from the patient upon whom the'operation is being eflectcd. Those in attendance are naturally exposed to the atmosphere, the floors and other surroundings of hte quarters. Persons moving about in the area in normal footwear and leaving the area in that footwear have been found to carry away with them to other areas of the hopsital contaminants, as, for example, staphylococci. Exposure to such contaminants affects the health not only of otherstalf members but of other patients in the unit. Runs of ellections have been traced to such sources.
Accordingly, an objective of this invention is to prevent the above undesirable exposures. Another object is the provision of an, article of footwear which is protective. Still another objective is providing a means and a method of covering the normal footwear of attendants in aseptic operations with sterilized articles which may be disposed of and left behind in the area. These and other'purposes are found hereinafter.
The objects of this invention are accomplished by the provision of a disposable overshoe which is made largely of paper yet'which may be exposed in conventional steriliz ers for sterile'use and reuse. The article of this invention comprises an upper portion encasing the leg of the wearer connected to a bottom portion which is generally a conductive material and means to completely envelop the foot and a portion of the leg of the wearer and means to effect electrical contact of the wearer with the conduc- 1 Shown in Figure lare the tie strings 7 and 8. These are placed at the bottom of the shoe and areconnected, as is the top portion, to the sole 9 of the protector. These tie strings are anchored at the heel end and, as shown in Figure 3, they are spiralled on the outside of the upper portion and tied at 10. The positioning 'of the strings provides for integration of the overshoe with the foot. The protector rises, falls and moves with the foot. It does not slip down nor does it tend to remain behind when the heel is lifted. Being unitary with the foot the attendant is free to move about assuredly, without concern for the fastening or unfastening of the device.
As shown in Figure 1 the'sole 9 has an inner portion 11 of a conductive material and as shown in Figure 2 the outside or the bottom of the sole is also made of a conductive material. The purpose of the conductor is to ground the wearer so that accumulation of static electricity can be avoided. Electrostatic discharges are thereby prevented. This is important in avoiding ignition of inflammable materials, such as ether, which may be about and also in. avoiding subjecting persons to discomforting shocks. In addition to the conductive sole, the overshoe has attached to the heel a long, thin ribbon 12 of the same material as is the sole. .By means of this direct, next-to-skin contact can be easily effected by the wearer's simply inserting the end'of this ribbon into the sox. Not only is the entire sole 13 and heel 14 of the wearer in contact with conductive material, as shown in Figures 3 and 4, but a direct, skin contact is made. This effective grounding eliminates the possibility of electrostatic forces. This conductive ribbon '12 can be of any length desired and can be long enough to actually surround the leg of the wearer and two may be used if desired. Normally, only one is needed for additional anchoring of the shoe to the wearer is not needed and the skin contact of one ribbon suffices.
The conductive sole of the shoe may be made from paper, fabrics, leather and similar materials. These are treated with water-insensitive, conducting materials in such fashion to laminate, impregnate or bond the conductive material to the substrate. In this invention the conductive material, such as graphite, is applied to the paper or fabric of which sole 9 is to be made so that it is thoroughly distributed on both sides and throughout the sole. A water-resistant binder is applied, such as a synthetic, polymeric base, a lacquer or the like, which is dried or melt pressed or fixed into binding position by similar treatments. The conductive materials have resistances which meet all requirements of hospitals for safe practice in hospital operating rooms. The sticking of the parts to the sole including the anchoring of the strings and ribbons at 15 is done with sturdy material, the upper usually being stitched to the sole as shown in Figure 1, and the whole garment can withstand considerable wear without tearing or loosening. This adds to,
The upper section ofthe overshoe, as well as the sole,
the conductive ribbon and the tie strings are sturdy,
steam-resistant materials. As. shown in Figure 1, at and 16, the various elements are shown sewed to the sole. These elements and the binding thread are resistant to water at elevated temperatures. Theyare usually made from a durable, tough, fibrous-paper. This may be single, double or multiple thickness paper; usually of a.
porous, flexible type. The paper is held together by the interweaving or meshing of individual particles .or by the use of fibers or filaments bonding layers together, the filacontaining a water insensitive, conductive throughout; attached to edges of said sole portion an upper portion being a sheet of flexible material the ends of which are in overlapping position adapted to coact in spreading apart to admit the foot of the wearer and to envelop it completely; attached to the said sole a flexible ribbon containing a water insensitive, conductive material and having a freely moveable length sufficient to allow ;next-to-skin contact with the wearer to effect the electrical grounding 'of the wearer to avoid accumulation of static electricity; and meansto fasten the garment tothe wearer.
'2. A garment in accordance with claim 1 in which the said ribbon is attached to the sole at its-heel portion.
cloth. While steam penetration in the autoclave is comparable, the penetration of bacteria takes much longer so the paper article is decidedly preferable.
In addition to this is the economic advantage. Articles constructed from cloth are considerably more expensive. Their disposal after only one use is serious at any time and particularly in large hospitals where large numbers of the articles are to be used. The articles of this invention can be used once and disposed of without concern of the economic aspects, for their construction from relatively inexpensive materials affords their availability at low cost. Their sturdiness' permits frequent reuse. Most important, this invention provides a method and a means for controlling contaminating materials in vital areas.
While the invention has been disclosed herein in conv nection with certain embodiments and certain structural and procedural details, it is clear that changes, modifica tions or equivalents can be used by those skilled in the art; accordingly, such. changes within the principles of this invention are intended to be included within the scope of the claims below.
1. A garment adapted to be worn over the human foot and to envelop it completely comprising a sole portion 3. A garment in accordance with claim 1 in which the said means to fasten the garment to the wearer comprises tie strings fixed to the heel portion of the sole of the garment.
4. A garment, adapted to be worn over the human foot and to envelop it completely, comprising an upper section encasing a portion of the leg; meansfor grounding the person of the wearer comprising a conductive sole and connected to said conductive sole a conductive strip having a freely moveable length sufiicient to allow nextto-skin contact of the wearer to effect the grounding of the wearer and prevent accumulation of static electricity, said leg encasing portion being atfixed to the said sole portion in an overlapping position maintained throughout the height of said garment; and means to iasten the garment to the wearer. v
5. A claim in accordance with claim 4 in which said fastening means comprises tie strings fixed to the said sole portion at the heel section of said sole portion.
6. A claim in accordance with claim 4 in which said conductive strip is fixed to'the said conductive sole portion at the heel section of said sole portion.
References Cited in the 'file of patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 228,769 Mayall June 15, 1880 904,2s4 Fox Nov. 17, 1908 1,464,981 Fen ton Aug. 14, 1923 1,748,607 Jarrett Feb. 25, 1930 2,287,744 Monahan June 23. 1942 2,650,327 Legge Aug. 25, 1953 2,671,185
Bloom Mar. 2, 1954 material