US 3289999 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 6, 1966 KQNZAK 3,289,999
FLOW REGULATOR FOR FLEXIBLE TUBES Filed May 16, 1963 INVENTOR Peier Z2. Kozzzak BY WW United States Patent 35282999 FLGW REGULATOR FGR FLEXIBLE TUBES Peter A. Konzak, Erinsmade, N. Dalr. Filed May 16, 1963, Ser. No. 280,955 6 Claims. (Cl. 2516) The present invention relates to apparatus for administering fluids parenterally to patients, and particularly to a device for regulating the flow of fluid through a compressible tube.
The administration of fluids such as plasma or blood by means of gravity flow from a container through a conduit and thence through a hypodermic needle, is standard medical procedure. It is important that the fluid administered be regulated to flow at a certain rate, and hitherto various devices for this purpose have been devised. As usually carried out, the nurse is under necessity to use a watch, and to regulate the rate of flow by hand until the appropriate flow is obtained, the latter usually being measured in drops per minute.
The device according to the present invention has as an object the provision of means whereby the operator may immediately set the flow of fluid to a predetermined rate.
A further object of the present invention is the provision of a device that will be sufliciently economical to manufacture, as to be expendable even to the extent of serving as a throw away device.
A further and alternative object of the invention is the construction of the device of the type described which may be a unitary part of the bottle stopper, thereby being marketable together therewith as a complete unit.
A further object of the present invention is to provide a device of the type described which will have advantages over presently available types of flow regulators, as will hereinafter presently appear.
The flow regulator according to the present invention has the following characteristics: it will save time on the part of the operator in that the nurse, orderly or physician, need not wait with stop watch in hand in order to set the flow at an ordered rate.
This device may be made of no more than three parts, one being a frame or support which serves the functions of attachment to the tubing leading from the container, and of supporting a wheel rotatably in close proximity to the tubing in order to get various settings as to constriction of the compressible tubing. In the device hereinafter described the wheel is mounted on a spindle, and is provided with a series of elevations on the periphery thereof. Each of these elevations corresponds to a rate of flow. Further, a fiat portion is provided on the circumference of the wheel which, if in contact with the compressible tube, will permit the maximum flow by virtue of releasing the compression of the tube altogether. On the other hand, when it is desired as in most instances, to constrict the tube to a certain degree, rotation of the wheel will bring into contact with the compressible tube an elevation having a height correlated to the degree of compression and to the resultant rate of flow. These elevations are graduated at corresponding heights until upon a nearly complete rotation of the wheel an elevation will be brought into contact with the tube which will completely compress and close same.
Each of these elevations will be marked in such a Way as to indicate the rate of flow that will be obtained when the corresponding elevation is brought into contact with the compressible tubing. In addition, although the device will function in the absence of such, there may be provided a series of notches or detents in the face of the wheel arranged to engage an outstanding finger member serving to lock the wheel in the selected position in addition "ice to the functional result of the contact between the tube and the respective elevation.
Preferably the frame device, or supporting portion, may be formed of a single integral piece. Plastic material is preferred although manifestly metal or other material may be substituted if desired. The tube engaging portion of the frame or support will constitute a curved or partial wrap around the member so dimensioned as to permit lateral entrance of the tubing into the frame and into position between the frame member and the wheel member. The tube engaging portion of the frame preferably is moderately elongated in the direction of the engaged tubing, for the purpose of maintaining the straightness of the tube, and for firmness in engaging same, this portion ordinarily will be wider than the wheel supporting portion, the latter narrowing to give the operator ready access to the wheel for the purpose of rotating same into any particular position.
The elevations located about the periphery of the wheel may be of selected shape, and for the purpose intended a pillow-block shape is quite desirable having a flat tube contacting surface and rounded corners. The number of elevations is optional and the heights of the respective elevations should be correlated with the internal diameter of the tubing. The entire device should be constructed preferably of comparatively light weight material and of dimensions no larger than necessary to accomplish the result intended.
Referring now to the drawings:
FIG. 1 is an elevational view of a supported container With tube and flow regulator according to the present invention in place.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged side elevation of the flow regulor according to the present invention.
FIG. 3 is a horizontal sectional view taken alone line 3-3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a horizontal sectional view taken along line 44 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 5 is a detailed sectional View taken along line 55 of FIG. 4.
FIG. 6 is a vertical view partly in section of the device shown in FIG. 2.
FIG. 7 is an elevational view of a modified form of the flow regulator according to the present invention.
Referring particularly to FIG. 1, there is shown a conventional apparatus consisting of a support means 11, bracket or arm means 13, bail 16, container 17, stopper 18, air inlet tube 19 and fluid outlet tube 21. Attached to tube 21 there is a tubing means 23 formed of compressible material such as rubber or plastic, whereon the flow regulator means according to the present invention is 0peratively mounted.
In FIG. 2 it will be seen that a flow regulator according to the present invention is mounted on compressible tubing 23 in such a manner that the tubing is in open position.
The wheel member 26 which in shape is identical with a flat circular cylinder, is additionally provided however on its periphery with a series of projections or elevations, these being numbered in this illustration from 0 to 30 in subdivisions of five, these figures representing drops per minute. The wheel is supported by means of a pin or spindle 37, and is rotatable manually to any setting desired.
In FIG. 6 one of the elevations, i.e., that providing for five drops per minute, is shown in maximum engagement with compressible tube 23. Also in FIG. 6 as in FIG. 2 there is shown a series of notches designated as 27a to 2712 inclusive. The purpose of these will be explained in conjunction with FIGS. 3 to 5. According to these latter it will be seen that the notches 27a, etc., engage successively a finger 29 extending from frame portion 31. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 5 the finger or catch member 29 is integral with the frame, and may be considered as constructed of plastic material having suflicient elasticity to enter or be withdrawn from notches 27a, etc., with reasonable ease. Each notch manifestly corresponds to a particular elevation and to a particular position of rotation of the wheel when said elevation is brought into contact with the compressible tube.
The frame in the embodiment described has a lip portion 34 which extends or wraps partially around tubing 23 as most clearly shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. The opening 35 at the side of the frame is of sufficient Width to admit insertion of the compressible tube and removal thereof.
The embodiment in FIG. 7 is in its most essential respects similar to the embodiment of FIGS. 1 to 6, but differs therefrom in that the frame or support member 311 is made as a fixed or integral portion of bottle stopper 181. In this embodiment the compressible tube 231 may extend directly through the stopper Without the intervention of conduit 21, although manifestly if desired a short extension of an outlet may be provided.
Whereas for best understanding of the invention there has been described specific embodiments thereof, it will be understood that changes may be made therein without departing from the spirit of the invention or the scope of the subjoined claims.
What is claimed is:
1. In apparatus for administering fluid parenterally, a length of elastic tubing and a flow regulator comprising a rotatable wheel member, the periphery of said wheel memher being provided with a series of elevations of respectively graduated height as measured from the axis of said wheel member, said elevations being separated by intervening recesses on the periphery of said wheel member, a frame member supporting said wheel, said frame member being provided with a tube engaging portion, said elevations being adapted for direct contact with said tubing, whereby each elevation forms a positive constriction in the opening of said tube.
2. A flow regulator as set forth in claim 1 wherein the face of said wheel is provided with a series of notches.
3. A flow regulator as set forth in claim 1 wherein the face of said wheel is provided with a series of notches, and said frame member is provided with a finger portion positioned to engage said notches in succession.
4. In apparatus for administering fluid parenterally, a length of elastic tubing and a fiow regulator comprising a rotatable wheel member, the periphery of said wheel memher being provided with a series of elevations of respectively graduated height as measured from the axis of said Wheel member, said elevations being separated by intervening recesses on the periphery of said wheel member, a frame member supporting said wheel, and being provided with a tube engaging portion, said frame member being unitary with a stopper adapted to be inserted in a fluid container, said elevations being adapted for direct contact with said tubing, whereby each elevation forms a positive constriction in the opening of said tube.
5. A flow regulator according to claim 1 wherein said tube engaging portion is wider as measured in the direction of the axis of said tube than the wheel supporting portion of said frame.
6. In apparatus for administering fluid parenterally, a length of elastic tubing and a flow regulator comprising a rotatable wheel member, the periphery of said wheel member being provided with a series of elevations having substantially flat surfaces and round corners, said elevations being of respectively graduated height as measured from the axis of said wheel member, said elevations being separated by intervening recesses on the periphery of said wheel member, a one-piece frame member having a curved portion for engaging a section of said tubing, a spindle mounted in said frame member, said wheel member being rotatably mounted on said spindle member, said flat surfaces of said elevations being adapted for direct contact with said tubing, whereby each elevation forms a positive constriction in the opening of said tube.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 850,371 4/1907 Jeralds 251-10 1,032,664 7/1912 France 2519 2,908,476 10/1959 Hidding 2518 3,034,504 5/1962 Winsor et al. 128214 3,135,259 6/1964 Evans 2516 X 3,215,395 11/1965 Gorbar 251-6 WILLIAM F. ODEA, Primary Examiner.
ISADOR WEIL, Examiner.
R. GERARD, Assistant Examiner.