US 2987062 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 6, 1961 A. E. ELLISON 2,987,062 BONE SPLINT WITH ABSORBABLE SECTION Filed July 25, 1956 Fig. I l8 I6 22 IO I2 I C=t J E INVENTOR. ARTHUR E. ELLISON ATTORNEYS United States Patent C) 2,987,062 BONE SPLINT WITH ABSORBABLE SECTION Arthur E. Ellison, Medfield, Mass. (Adams Road, Williamstown, Mass.) Filed July 23, 1956, Ser. No. 599,448 2 Claims. (Cl. 128-92) This invention relates to orthopedic appliances and in particular to the clamp useful in treating bone fractures.
There is known to the profession an orthopedic clamp commonly referred to as a Par-ham band and used to treat fractures wherein the bone is fragmented, such for example, as a butterfly fracture. The Parham band consists of a strip of inert metal such as stainless steel or vitalium, having an enlarged head with an opening large enough to receive the body of the strip. The band is passed around the fractured bone and drawn tight; then the strip is bent back upon itself where it passes through the opening in the head. The bone fragments are thus clamped tightly in proper array so that the healing process may begin.
While the Parham band has been proved a useful device for the treatment of difiicult fractures, it has been found necessary to operate after a few weeks to remove the band, since continued pressure of the clamp eventually causes the death of the bone beneath it.
One object of the invention is to eliminate the operation required for the removal of a Parham band.
Another object of the invention is to reduce the expense to the patient for the treatment of a fracture of bone.
An important feature of the invention resides in incorporating in a Parham band a portion comprised of a substance which deteriorates or is absorbed within the body, thus providing an automatic release of the pressure of the clamp without requiring an operation on the patient.
These and other objects and features of the invention will be more readily understood and appreciated from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof selected for purposes of illustration and shown in the accompanying drawing, in which:
FIG. 1 is a plan view of a clamp embodying the invention,
FIG. 2 is a plan view on an enlarged scale showing the connecting link more clearly, and
FIG. 3 is a diagrammatic view in cross-section through a fractured bone in which the clamp has been applied.
The clamp of the invention, as best shown in FIG. 1, includes an elongated narrow flat strip of flexible but not excessively resilient inert metal such as stainless steel, vitalium or other strong tough substance which may be incorporated in the body without generating local reactions or toxic elfects. Adjacent each end of the strip 10 is a hole, as shown at 12 and 14.
There is also provided a shorter strip 16 of the same material but having an enlarged spatulate head in which is punched a slot 18 wide enough to receive the strip 10. At its other end the strip 16 is provided with a hole 20 matching the hole 14 in the adjacent end of the strip 10.
Interconnecting the strips, or hands, 10 and 16 is a link 22 made of a material which deteriorates when incorporated in the body. 1 have found that chromic catgut is a satisfactory material for the link 22, being a material commonly employed for absorbable sutures and disintegrating fairly rapidly in response to the digeslive action of tissue enzymes. Other materials suggest themselves to those skilled in the art.
Preferably the link 22 is endless, a result which may be achieved by forming a tube of material and slicing ofi loops. The link 22 may conveniently be secured 2,987,062 Patented June 6, 1961 to the holes 14 and 20 in the strips 10 and 16 by ring hitches, as most clearly shown in FIG. 2, although other forms of knot, hitch, or connection are obviously suitable. Preferably the strip or band '16 is much shorter than the strip 10, since it is desirable to have the link close to the enlarged head in order to make it possible to use the clamp on bones of small diameter.
In using the orthopedic clamp of the invention, the surgeon first makes such an incision as is necessary to enable him to pass the longer ship 10 around the bone, as suggested in FIG. 3. The free end of the strip 10 is brought through the slot 18 in the strip 16 and then engaged by a tensioning device (not shown). The tensioning device is employed to bind the clamp around the bone fragment 32 and 34 (within the leg 30) until the surgeon judges that suflicient pressure is being applied. Then the end 40 of the strip 10 is bent back upon itself and the excess snipped 01f. The tensioning device is removed, the incision closed, and conventional treatment techniques carried out.
The natural digestive action of tissue enzymes 'will consume the substance of the absorbable link 22, the result being that after a few weeks the link snaps or parts and clamping pressure is automatically terminated. The metal parts of the band may be left in situ without adverse effects. Consequently the patient is relieved of the pain and expense of an operation for removal of the clamp, while at the same time the deleterious effects of continued pressure on the bone are obviated.
It should be pointed out that the diameter of the link material can be varied to increase or decrease the time required for disintegration of the link.
Having thus disclosed my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States is:
1. An orthopedic clamp comprising a pair of bands of which the first has an enlarged end provided with an opening large enough to receive the other band, the other end of the first band and one end of the second hand being provided with holes, and a link passing through said holes and joining the two bands, said link being comprised of a tough material which is absorbable within the body.
2. An orthopedic clamp comprising a pair of bands having first ends thereof fastened one to the other, the second ends of said bands being provided with holes, and a link passing through said holes and joining the two bands, said link being comprised of a tough material which is absorbable within the body.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,949,111 Randall Feb. 27, 1934 1,950,799 Jones Mar. 13, 1934 2,030,018 Mouilbon Feb. 4, 1936 2,093,145 Carruthers Sept. 14, 1937 FOREIGN PATENTS 519,133 Great Britain Mar. 18, 1940 OTHER REFERENCES Annals of Surgery for 1893, p. 151. (Copy in Scientific Library and Division 55.)
The British Medical Journal J an. 30, 1932, page 198. (Copy in Division 55.)
Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery January 1935, pages 228-229. (Copy in Division 55.)
Operative Surgery, (Bickham), published by Saunders (Philadelphia) 1924, vol. II, page 367 relied on. (Copy in Div. 55.)
Arch. f. Klin. Ohir. 1930, pages 680-684, 128-92. (Copy in Division 55.)