US 3048549 A
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ilniterl States No Drawing.
1 Claim. (Cl. 252-518) This invention relates to electrode jelly package and is more particularly concerned with an electrode jelly which is suitable for being retained in a flexible container and the combination of the electrode jelly and the flexible container.
It is well known that for best results in electro-shock therapy, electroencephalograph and electro-cardiography that some type of electrolyte in liquid or semi-liquid form should be used between the electrodes of the machine and the body of a patient. Usually the electrolyte is applied to the body of a patient, and then the electrode is placed over the electrolyte and urged against the body until firm electrical contact is made between the body and the electrode. The electrode is then held place during the operation of the machine.
In the past the electrolyte employed to ground the electrodes, called electrode jelly, has usually been a gummy paste-like substance contained in a metal tube. Thus in order to open the prior art jelly, the doctor or his assistant, whom I shall refer to hereinafter as the operator, must utilize both hands, one to hold the body of the tube and the other to remove the cap. Thereafter the operator usually applies the prior art jelly to a piece of cotton which is then rubbed over the area of the patients skin to be grounded. In this process, the operator usually applies much of the jelly to his own hand or hands, and, in many instances, soils the bed linens and bed clothing of the patient as well as other articles which might be contacted by the cotton.
Usually, according to the prior art, the cap or lid of the container of the prior art jelly is replaced on the container after use so that this gummy pasty prior art jelly will not solidify upon prolonged exposure to the atmosphere and thereby become clogged in the container.
After replacing the cap, the operator does not usually Wash his hands but proceeds immediately to operate the machine. Because of the electrode jelly on his hands, the operator, upon touching an exposed portion of the machine, may, in some instances, receive an electrical shock from the machine which, because of the electrode jelly, is far more severe than would normally be expected.
Other disadvantages of the prior art jellies is that many of these jellies are not true solutions but instead are in the nature of heterogeneous mixtures containing gritty particles or lumps which are disagreeable to the skin. in many instances the prior art jellies contain pumice or other ingredients which may cause irritation of the skin and peeling of the epidermal skin layer.
The prior art jellies also tend to dry readily upon exposure to the atmosphere and hence may, within a short period of time, become wholly unusable. This tendency to dry out also is disagreeable to the patient since upon prolonged cardiographic examination, the patient may find that the jelly has completely caked on his skin, and is diificult to remove.
Contrary to the prior art, I have devised an electrode jelly which overcomes the prior art disadvantages described above and provides a jelly so packaged that it may be dispensed with one hand directly to the body. The container and the physical properties of my jelly are such that the container may be left open and exposed to the atmosphere for a substantial length of time without detrimental eflfect. Further, my jelly, while having a low resistance to electrical flow and relatively high penetration characteristics, has a pleasing odor, is non-irritating and is 3,048,549 Patented Aug. 7, 1962 a smooth homogeneous mass. Briefly, my electrode jelly may be described as an electrolyte, preferably a soluble salt which is dissolved in a liquid vehicle including a selfemulsifying hydrocarbon oil. In admixture therewith is a guru cellulose and a preservative.
The ingredients, comprising the electrolyte, vehicle, gum cellulose and preservative, form a solution in which the electrolyte is close to saturation therein and yet remains in solution.
It is an object of my invention to provide an electrode jelly which is low in electrical resistance, and high in skin penetration characteristics.
Another object of my invention is to provide an electrode jelly which is homogenous in nature and does not readily cake or dry out when exposed to the atmosphere.
Another object of my invention is to provide an electrode jelly which may be easily and effectively applied to a persons body.
Another object of my invention is to provide an electrode jelly which has a pleasing odor, is non-irritating to the skin and has a soothing feeling to the skin.
Another object of my invention is to provide an electrode jelly which may be stored for extended periods of time without marked deterioration of the jelly.
Another object of my invention is to provide an electrode jelly which is inexpensive to manufacture, and etficient in operation.
Other and further objects and advantages of my invention will become apparent from the following description.
In more detail, the preferred embodiment of the electrode jelly of my invention consists of:
Percent Aqueous saturated sodium chloride solution 87.64
Self-emulsifying mineral oil 8.76 Sodium carboxymethylcellulose (70 Premium Medium) 3.50
Sodium benzoate .1
The aqueous saturated sodium chloride solution is made up by adding an excess of sodium chloride to water while stirring the same. Heat is applied to this mixture if desired to assure maximum saturation and then the solution is permitted to stand until equilibrium condition at room temperature is attained. Thereafter, the solution is decanted or otherwise removed from the remaining salt.
Next the sodium benzoate is mixed with the carboxymethylcellulose and then this mixture is added simultaneously with the self-emulsifying mineral oil to the saturated sodium chloride solution accompanied by extremely rapid agitation. For agitating the above ingredients, I prefer to use a Waring Blender or other type of blender which rotates at very rapid speed. Other methods of combining the ingredients, of course, will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art and hence no detailed explanation of other methods of combining the ingredients is necessary.
When the blender has been operated for a sufiicient length of time that the ingredients appear to be homogeneous, the blender is stopped and the homogeneous electrode jelly thus manufactured is then preferably charged into a flexible plastic container.
It will be understood that While I have disclosed the preferred embodiment of my invention above, that the same does not constitute the only ingredients or proportions which are operable. For example, it will be apparent that a vast number of conductive inorganic salts are available as the electrolyte, or a substitute for the sodium chloride. These salts should be stable, non-irritating and compatible with the other ingredients. Some suitable salts are: potassium chloride, sodium sulfate, potassium sulfate, sodium bromide, potassium bromide, sodium nitrate, potassium nitrate, ammonium chloride, ammonium bromide, ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulfate, magnesium sulfate, magnesium nitrate, magnesium chloride, sodium tetraborate and the like. Obviously, it is more desirable to use a salt which ionizes almost completely, is odorless and has a pH of about 7. Thus, from a cost and desirability standpoint, sodium chloride is the most suitable salt to be employed.
According to my invention, any non-irritating selfemulsifying hydrocarbon oil which will combine with Water, such as liquid petroleum or liquid paraflinmay be substituted for the self-emulsifying mineral oil of my preferred embodiment. It will also be understood that other cellulose gums such as methylcellulose Cellosolve may be substituted for the sodium carboxymethylcellulose described above.
It will be further understood that the preservative, sodium benzoate, may be eliminated from my formula or that other well known preservatives or anti-oxidants may be employed without departing from the scope of my invention.
The proportions of ingredients may be varied. The maximum and minimum variation of the ingredients may be determined by reference to Table I below wherein percentages are given by weight:
1 To saturation.
It is important according to my invention that the resulting viscosity of my electrode jelly be between proper limits. If the jelly istoo fluid, it will not readily adhere to the skin of the patient. If the jelly is too viscous, it will not be readily applied and will not penetrate the surface of the skin. Another consideration as to the viscosity of my electrode jelly is that the jelly must be of the proper viscosity to be readily dispensed through the opening in a container; if the jelly is too fluid, it will tend to run out of the opening of the container. If the jelly is too viscous, it will be difiicult or impossible to be discharged from the container.
According to my invention, the viscosity of my electrode jelly should be about 7,800 centipoises at F.; however, the viscosity may be varied from 1,002 centipoises to 8,800 centipoises, measured at 70 F.
When my electrode jelly is to be used in a plastic container, the cap is removed and the container held in one hand of the operator and positioned adjacent the patient with head of the container resting gently against the skin area to which the jelly is to be applied.
Thereafter, the sides of the flexible container are urged inwardly by pressure of the thumb and fingers to thereby decrease the volume of the flexible container and urge or squeeze the electrode jelly out of the opening. As the electrode jelly is urged from the container, the container is moved about over the skin area whereby the electrode jelly i distributed over the skin area smoothed into the crevices of the skin by head of the container.
It will be understood by those skilled in the art that many variations may be made in the embodiment chosen for purpose of illustration without departing from the scope of my invention as defined by the appended claim.
Electrode jelly consisting of the following in approximately the following proportions:
Percent Aqueous saturated sodium chloride solution 87.6 Mineral oil 8.76 Sodium canboxymethylcellulose 3.50 Sodium benzoate .1
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,279,320 Huston Apr. 14, 1942 2,578,888 Kaveler Dec. 18, 1951 2,643,408 Decker June 30, 1953 2,688,424 Keiter Sept. 7, 1954 2,761,849 Myron Sept. 4, 1956 OTHER REFERENCES Electronic Engineering, February 1945, page 377.
*Ind. and Eng. Chem, October 1945, pages 943-4.
Hercules Cellulose Gum (C.M.C.), November 1953 (Bull. of Hercules Powder Co., Wilmington, Del.).