US 3146469 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
P 1964 c. c. SLADE 3,146,469
AXIAL GROOVE MATTRESS Filed Sept. 5, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet l Conamore C. Slade INVENTOR.
p 1, 1964 c. c. SLADE 3,146,469
AXIAL GROOVE MATTRESS Filed Sept. 5, 1962 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 I? Fig. .9
Conamore C. Slade INVENTOR.
United States Patent 3,146,469 AXIAL GROOVE NLATTRESS Conamore C. Slade, 6711 Nebraska, Tampa, Fla. Filed Sept. 5, 1%2, Ser. No. 221,529 '7 Claims. (Cl. -91) This invention relates to a special-purpose mattress which, while suitable for practical and helpful use on ones home bed, is expressly designed and aptly adapted for use atop a hospital bed. Accordingly, it is geared to the needs of a patient who, having undergone surgery (neurosurgical, orthopedic and/ or rectal) requires a mattress embodying means which provides clearance for incisional dressings and bulky protruding bandages.
One concern of the hospital staff involves not only the patient but the attending nurse; namely, how to cope with painful and often unbearable mattress pressure which is traceable to body prominences and protrusions and protruding bandages. The problem has long been recognized and while certain recessed and grooved mattresses have been patented and apparently offered for use they have evidently not met with widespread adoption or endorsement. As above implied, that there has long existed a need for an effective efficiently designed mattress with clearance and pressure reducing features. It follows that the herein disclosed invention has to do with an axially grooved mattress which provides reduction of pressures that would otherwise be imposed on vulnerable areas of the bed occupants body.
More particularly the invention comprehends the adoption and use of a mattress featuring novel groove means which functions to reduce pressure on the cranium and its coverings, the cervical spine, the thoracic spine, the lumbar spine and the sacrum. The foregoing all occur in axial line for improved support in patients who have undergone operative procedures and involving the use of bandages.
Another objective stems from the fact that the grooved mattress herein under consideration is such in construction that it can be used efficiently to meet the individual needs of many different statures and types of patients, insures the patient more independent and controllable support, promotes maximum functioning in keeping with the particular nature of the surgery such bandaging as has to be taken care of.
A further object of the present invention is to provide a longitudinally grooved mattress construction wherein significantly critical attention has been given to reliable functioning and comfort, to the end that the average patient soon learns to use the available facilities quickly and without difficulty and accepts and uses the same without hesitating reluctance.
Keeping in mind proper treatment and follow-up care it is a further objective to provide for psychological reinforcement and to maintain good body alignment which as experience has shown is self-accommodating to the groove and complemental readily insertable and removable block-like fillers or plugs which are normally plugged therein but are selectively removable in keeping with the requirements and needs of each occupant of the bed.
In addition it is another object to provide a groove in a mattress which opens through the top of the mattress to accommodate block-like fillers or plugs and more particularly wherein a half-portion of the groove is sufiiciently large or wide that it defines a bedpan well making it possible to insert a bedpan in the well for comfortable usage with the top or brim of the bedpan substantially level or flush with the top of the mattress.
The invention also features a mattress with the novel axial groove and insertable and removable plugs or filler blocks and wherein said mattress and also said blocks are each characterized by a compressibly resilient cushion 3,l46,4 69 Patented Sept. 1, 1964 and a covering therefor wherein the covering is waterproof for efiicient cleaning in case of inadvertent spillage and wherein all surfaces are susceptible of being maintained at a level of cleanliness required for hospital bed mattresses.
A still further objective resides in the provision of an axially grooved waterproof mattress with appropriately proportioned insertable and removable plugs or blocks which serve to reduce pressure against specific axial areas of the spine to accommodate dressings, reduces pressure against bed sores, reduces pain occasioned by craniotomies,, laminectomies, pelvic fractures, paraplegias, spinal injuries, prostatic operations, rectal and bladder operations, and functions to avoid embarrassment of catheter use while at the same time minimizes anxiety of a patient in distress.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:
FIGURE 1 is a view in perspective of a multipurpose axial groove bed mattress constructed in accordance with the principles of the invention and showing the same in readiness for use;
FIGURE 2 is a View like FIG. 1 but illustrating all of the readily insertable and removable (selectively usable) filler blocks or plugs removed;
FIGURES 3 and 4 are enlarged fragmentary detail sectional views taken on the plane of the section lines 3-3 and 4-4, respectively of FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 5 is a group or exploded perspective view illustrating the entire group of prefabricated filler blocks or plugs in the relationship in which they are used for example as illustrated in FIGURE 1; and
FIGURES 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 are perspective views on a smaller scale and with certain of the details omitted and showing the appearance of the mattress with different blocks or plugs removed depending on the result desired.
If one were to see the mattress of FIGURE 1 on a bed and covered with a sheet (not illustrated) it would appear to be an ordinary or conventional mattress. On the other hand by removing the sheet and exposing the then visible component parts the observer would note a mattress surface which is radically distinct and different; namely, the aforementionai axial groove mattress. Considered as a structural entity the mattress is denoted by the numeral 12 and is of oblong or rectangular shape in plan and embodies as usual a transverse upper or head end 14, a transverse lower or foot end 16 and lengthwise marginal edges 18 and 2t). The filler media constituting the mattress proper may be of foam rubber or equivalent compressibly resilient media the same being denoted generally by the numeral 22 in FIGS. 3 and 4. The exterior covering 24 must be properly applied and seamed in place and it is preferably sailcloth (vinyl). The thus prepared mattress is made in such a manner that the centralized axial groove (FIG. 2) is recessed therein. This groove has suitable half-portions designated generally at 26 in FIG. 2 and 28, with a central junctional shoulder portion 30. The upper or head end of the groove is denoted at 32 and the lower foot end at 34 these ends being spaced inwardly from the respective upper and lower ends 14 and 16 of the overall mattress. The top of the mattress is denoted by the numeral 36 and it will be evident that the groove thus opens through the top. The groove thus constructed serves to accommodatingly receive the snugly fitted insertable and removable filler blocks or plugs of the general rectangular form illustrated with particularity in FIGS. 1 and 5. Digressing for the moment it is to be pointed out that the widened end portion of the groove designated at 28 constitutes a sump or well for reception and retention of a bedpan when the latter is being used and when, of course, the attending blocks or plugs have been removed. This well serves to accommodate the three blocks denoted by the numerals 38, 4t and 42. The upper half-portion 26 serves to accommodate the several blocks or filler plugs designated respectively by the numerals 44, 46 and 48. Each block comprises a compressibly resilient filler or body portion Sit and a waterproof jacket or casing 52 therefor.
The bottom side of the mattress is reinforced by a sectional bottom construction which is denoted generally by the numeral 54. Actually the bottom comprises a plurality of transverse longitudinally spaced wooden, plastic or equivalent rigid slats 56 each contained in an envelope or jacket comprising the component covering portions 58 and 60. The jacketed slats are permanently sealed and are provided primarily for adjustment to modern hospital flexible adjustable bed springs and for raising and lowering the head and foot of the bed.
By providing the bedpan well 28 and having the same accessible by removing the blocks or plugs 38, 4t) and 42 the nurse or other attendant can take care of bedpan requirements easily and expeditiously. Having used waterproof coverings for efiicient cleaning in case of inadvertent spillage comfort and convenience for the patient is assured. At the same time needless physical effort, ordinarily expended by a nurse or attendant, is reduced to a minimum and the likelihood of injury in handling heavy patients (an occupational hazard) is assured.
In evaluating the invention it will be seen that the increased temperature gradient in the axial groove induces and promotes a general relaxation without reduction of heat dissipation from other body surfaces. The axial groove therefore, conserves comfortable body heat to the spinal area, such as a patient would receive from physiotherapeutic heat treatment or a hot shower to the spinal area. All advantages for the axial groove mattress are from a medical, orthopedic, neurosurgical, surgical and psychiatric standpoint, and do not conflict with prior art accomplishments. Confused patients require less restraint. The mattress improves pain tolerance in surgical patients, reduces pressure against bony prominences of the spine.
It will be further appreciated that anyone of the blocks or plugs may be removed and replaced. An additional feature resides in the fact that the bed sheet can be applied in the routine hospital manner by the nurse and when it is in position and assuming that one or more blocks have been removed, that portion of the sheet which stretches across the groove provides a contoured cradle. This cradling feature is applicable to specific operative procedures at various levels of the body. It will be evident therefore that for brain surgery with the sheet over the recess or clearance pocket (FIG. 6) the nurse or required attendant will remove the block or plug 44. By replacing this block or plug and removing the next one 46 the recess or pocket will be as shown in FIG. 7 and this same result is had by following the additional steps indicated progressively in FIGS. 8, 9 and 10.
It should be clear from the disclosure that the unique axial groove has the closed terminal 32 of the upper half portion 26 close to but neverthele s spaced from the trans verse end 14. The junctional shouldered portion 3%) is located at the approximate transverse central portion of the mattress as a unit and the wider end portion 34 terminates well above the foot 16 of the mattress. This precision located groove consequently provides a frame of reference and orientation through the medium of which the patient can readily locate and position himself centrally in respect to the lengthwise dimension of the bed or mattress as the case may be. Patients enclosed in side rails, as experience has shown, rarely fall out of bed. Those who do not have side rails occasionally fall from the bed as a result of anxiety, confusion or perhaps during certain periods of sedation. It is evident, therefore, that the expression axial ties in with the orientation aspect and, as experience has also shown, helps the patient to remain in bed almost instinctively and accidental displacement is therefore reduced to an acceptable minimum. Patients undergoing retinal and corneal and cataract surgery (whose eyes would be bandaged during the postoperative period) are better oriented to the mattress by reason of the feel of the pad-loaded axial groove. Hence it is not necessary to support the head with sandbags or other devices which are commonly used to keep the patient from turning his head or losing himself on a mattress which is wholy without midline orientation. Then, too, patients who are hospitalized because of cardiac disease are saved vigorous physical activity of mounting or attempting to sustain themselves for various periods of time on the bedpan. With the available area 28 bedpan ditficulties with the top of the pan level with the mattress are also reduced to the acceptable minimum. Finally, patients in pelvic, cervical or leg traction do not require lateral support such as is normally provided with the aid of sandbags.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. For use atop a bed; a compressibly resilient mattress covered with sailcloth and thus being waterproof, the bottom of said mattress having a plurality of transverse rigidifying slats incorporated therein, said slats being each contained in a separate jacket and said jackets being hingedly joined to each other, and means embodied lengthwise in the central longitudinal portion of the top side of said mattress which functions to reduce undesirable pressure against predetermined axial areas of the patients spine and also functions to provide needed clearance for bulky surgical dressings, whereby to minimize pressure upon bed sores, and painful areas occasioned by craniotomies, laminectomies, pelvic fractures, paraplegias, spinal injuries, prostatic, rectal and bladder operations, said means being characterized by a centralized axial elongated groove which opens through said top side, said groove being of a depth and proportional cross-sectional width commensurate and in keeping with the clearance requirements needed, the upper end portion of said groove being adapted to accommodatingly nest the patients cranium and its coverings therein.
2. The structure defined in claim 1, and wherein the lower end portion of said groove is widened, constitutes a well and is thus adapted to accommodatingly receive a bed pan therein.
3. The structure defined in claim 2, and wherein that portion of the groove between said upper and lower end portions is designed and adapted to provide clearance for the cervical spine, thoracic spine, and lumbar spine, respectively.
4. The structure according to claim 3 and, in combination, a plurality of insertable and removable compressibly resilient waterproof washable filler blocks removably fitted end to end in said groove, there being an uppermost block fitting into said upper end portion of said groove, a lowermost block fitting into the lower end portion, and the intervening blocks fitting into that portion of the groove between said upper and lower end portions.
5. A compressibly resilient special purpose bed mattress having top and bottom sides, the underneath of the bottom side having a plurality of transverse slat-accommodating and containing jackets attached thereto, said jackets being proximal to each other and having adjacent longitudinal edge portions hingedly joined, individual rigid mattress stabilizing slats confined in the pockets provided therefor in their respectively cooperable jackets, means embodied in the central longitudinal top side of said mat tress comprising a centrally positioned axially elongated groove opening upwardly through said top side, said groove being of a length and depth commensurate with and in keeping with such requirements as are needed, said groove functioning to provide for reception and clearance such as may be needed for bulky surgical dressings and to accordingly minimize pressure upon bed sores, painful areas occasioned by craniotomies, laminectomies, pelvic fractures, paraplegias, spinal injuries, prostatic, rectal and bladder operations, said groove having an upper end portion functionally designed and adapted to accommodatingly nest the users cranium and its coverings therein, said groove also having a lower end portion increased in width and constituting a well, said well being of a depth and size to accommodatingly receive an insertable and removable bed pan, that portion of the groove between said upper and lower end portions being adapted to provide clearance for efiicacious accommodation of the cervical spine, thoracic spine and lumbar spine, respectively.
6. The structure according to claim 5 and, in combination, a plurality of selectively insertable and removable resilient waterproof filler blocks, there being an uppermost block fitting removably in to the aforementioned upper end portion of said groove, a lowermost block titting into and filling said lower end portion of the groove when the aforementioned bed pan is not to be used, and a plurality of intervening filler blocks lodged end-to-end in the receptacle portion of said groove and situated between said uppermost and lowermost blocks and filling the median portion of the groove, all of said blocks being of a cross-sectional dimension conformable with the depth of the portions of the groove occupied thereby whereby the top surfaces of said blocks are flush with the top surface of said mattress.
7. The structure defined in claim 5 and in combination a conventional bed sheet applied tautly to said mattress and having a portion spanning the top side of the mattress whereby that portion of the sheet which bridges said groove crosswise and lengthwise is adapted to belly itself into the cooperating portions of the groove and to in this manner provide a saddle-like cradle for the body parts or protruding bandaged parts which cooperate therewith and are suspended thereby.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,107,683 Malarkey Aug. 18, 1914 1,210,019 Truman et al Dec. 26, 1916 1,295,770 Lamont Feb. 25, 1919 2,615,175 Corakas Oct. 28, 1952 2,638,606 Austin May 19, 1953