Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.


  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3303518 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 14, 1967
Filing dateSep 8, 1964
Priority dateMar 5, 1962
Publication numberUS 3303518 A, US 3303518A, US-A-3303518, US3303518 A, US3303518A
InventorsIngram George
Original AssigneeIngram George
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Inflatable mattresses, pillows and cushions
US 3303518 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Feb. 14, 1967 G. INGRAM INFLATABLE MATTRESSES, PILLOWS AND CUSHIONS Filed Sept. 8, 1964 Milt/Wok 66 E612 INGRAM United States Patent Gfliee 3,303,518 Patented Feb. 14, 1967 3,303,518 INFLATABLE MATTRESSES, PHLOWS AND CUSHIONS George Ingram, 803 Raleigh House, London, England Filed Sept. 8, 1964, Ser. No. 394,866 1 Claim. (Cl. 349) This invention has reference to inflatable supporting members for the human body such as mattresses, pillows and cushions, particularly inflatable hospital mattresses, and has for its primary object to provide a construction wherein different pressures may be given to various parts of the supporting member whereby the load-bearing area can be divided into separate sections capable of independent adjustment as to degree of softness to suit individual requirements. Invalids who are forced to lie in bed for long periods, and who are unable to move easily from one position to another, sufler considerable discomfort, and by means of the invention the pressures at selected areas of the mattress may be relieved or increased to minimize this discomfort. The same considerations apply to smaller body or body-part supports such as pillows, or cushions for limbs.

According to the said invention an inflatable supporting member for the human body (particularly a mattress) is made of flexible airtight material and is divided interiorly by airtight webs extending between its upper and lower walls into a plurality of individually inflatable compartments, each compartment being provided with a pair of separate tubes respectively for inflation and deflation.

In order that the said invention may be readily understood some embodiments thereof will be described, by way of example, with the aid of the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a mattress according to the invention;

FIGURE 2 is a perspective view of a pillow according to the invention, also shown in position (dot-and-dash) lines) in FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the side of the mattress so as to show more clearly the arrangement of air tubes;

FIGURE 4 is a perspective view of an inflation and deflation control box used in conjunction with the mattress seen in FIGURE 1; and

FIGURE 5 is a sectional detail to an enlarged scale showing one way in which the control buttons, which appears in FIGURE 4, operate to strangle the flow of air through the respective air tubes.

Referring to FIGURE 1 a mattress of oblong form and requisite size is constructed of an airtight plastics material with a top 1 spaced from a similar bottom, sides 2 and ends 3. It is divided interioraly into a suitable number, e.g. nine, compartments 4. These compartments 4 are of box-like form made by airtight Webs 5 extending between the top wall 1 and bottom wall of the mattress, and in criss-cross disposition. It is advantageous to make the three compartments which lie in the transverse middle somewhat longer than the others. Each compartment is capable of being individually inflated and deflated, and for this purpose is connected by air tubes 6, 6a or other suitable ducts to a device such as a combined air compressor and vacuum pump, the tubes 6 communicating with the compressor and the tubes 6a to the pump. The tubes are neatly bundled together and fixed to the mattress along one side 2, and led through the side wall to their various compartments (as shown for example by the broken lines in the three compartments at the foot of the mattress in FIGURE 1). i

The compressor/pump is not shown, and is remotely controlled by a means capable of easy use by a person using the mattress, and the remote control means is so designed as to permit each compartment of the mattress to be inflated or deflated to any degree required by the occupant of the mattress.

Thus the control device such as the control box 9 shown in FIGURE 4 includes a panel 8 having two sets of operating buttons 7 and 7a in pairs corresponding to the mattress compartments, one set being for inflation and the other for deflation. The sets are advantageously distinguished by shape so that they may be selected by the sense of touch, e.g. round buttons 7 for inflation and square buttons 7a for deflation, the buttons operating switches for electrically starting the pump, and opening respective valves in the air ducts, or, as illustrated in FIGURE 5, they may be screws, preferably quick thread, for strangling or opening the tubes 6, 6a in the interior of the control box 9. The latter would have main pressure and exhaust chambers constituting manifolds for feeding the respective tubes, and such manifolds would be connected to the compressor/ pump by the tubes 10, 10a.

In a simple form the air tubes or the like from the compartments terminate in inflation valves for manual inflation or deflation by a nurse or other attendant.

It will be seen that in a mattress according to the invention it will be a simple matter to adjust the mattress to the requirements of the occupants body at any given point.

In the case of particular sensitivity of a part of the body, it will be possible by deflating almost completely an appropriate compartment, to remove altogether bodily contact with the mattress and allow the part to bridge itself between inflated compartments.

In cases where only a limb is to be served by the invention, a smaller inflatable supporting member may be constructed as a cushion of appropriate shape, e.g. an elongated cushion with a reduced number of individually inflatable and deflatable compartments, and, as illustrated in FIGURES 1 and 2 a pillow could equally Well be divided into compartments capable of individual inflation and deflation. The pillow could be attachable to the mattress by complemental press stud parts 11.

I claim:

A mattress for supporting a body, comprising an airtight envelope having an upper wall and a lower wall united by a peripheral wall, the walls being of flexible impervious material, internal transverse webs of flexible impervious material extending between, and joined in an airtight manner to, the Walls to divide the interior of the mattress into a plurality of isolated compartments, a plurality of pairs of flexible tubes grouped together and secured to the exterior of the peripheral wall, the number of pairs corresponding to the number of compartments and extending in an air-tight manner through the flexible impervious material to open at their inner ends into the compartments with one pair opening into each compartment, each pair of tubes comprising an inflating tube and a deflating tube, the outer ends of the inflating tubes and deflating tubes being coupled, by a control box, to a common main air pressure inlet tube and a common air extraction tube respectively, and manually operable means on the control box for selectively opening and closing the passage betwen each inflating and deflating tube and the respective air inlet and air extraction tube.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,814,053 11/1957 Sevcik 5-348 2,998,817 9/1961 Armstrong 128-33 3,209,719 10/ 1965 Christopher 5-349 X FRANK B. SHERRY, Primary Examiner.

A. CALVERT, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2814053 *Sep 2, 1954Nov 26, 1957Burton Dixie CorpInflatable mattress
US2998817 *Aug 7, 1959Sep 5, 1961Gary Armstrong StebbinsInflatable massaging and cooling mattress
US3209719 *Mar 1, 1963Oct 5, 1965Eugene J ChristopherSurface propelling system
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3394415 *Apr 6, 1966Jul 30, 1968Buster A. ParkerPressure pad with independent cells
US3426373 *Oct 17, 1966Feb 11, 1969James H S ScottInflatable mattresses
US3479087 *Aug 28, 1967Nov 18, 1969Wilbur A BurkePneumatic powered seat erector for an invalid
US3667075 *Feb 24, 1970Jun 6, 1972Wesley D BallardMattress spring bellows assembly as for hospitals, and the like
US3705429 *Jan 6, 1970Dec 12, 1972Walter P NailInflatable load supporting structures
US3802004 *Dec 29, 1971Apr 9, 1974J WhitneyFluid containing mattress
US3822425 *Jul 7, 1972Jul 9, 1974J ScalesInflatable support appliance
US3905058 *Aug 13, 1973Sep 16, 1975Universal Oil Prod CoBack supports
US3909858 *Jul 23, 1973Oct 7, 1975Watkins & Watson LtdSupport appliances
US4258706 *Nov 17, 1978Mar 31, 1981Shank Donald CMuscle-relaxing reclining chair
US4394784 *Jul 8, 1981Jul 26, 1983Dial-A-Firm International, Inc.Air bed with firmness control
US4617690 *Jan 7, 1985Oct 21, 1986Whittaker CorporationInflatable bed patient mattress
US4679264 *Apr 1, 1986Jul 14, 1987Mollura Carlos AAirbed mattress including a regulated, controllable air reservoir therefor
US4737999 *Feb 2, 1987Apr 19, 1988Jabiru IncorporatedMaternity mattress
US4745647 *Dec 30, 1985May 24, 1988Ssi Medical Services, Inc.Patient support structure
US4766628 *Feb 19, 1987Aug 30, 1988Walker Robert AAir mattress with filler check valve and cap therefor
US4768249 *Sep 26, 1986Sep 6, 1988Ssi Medical Services, Inc.Patient support structure
US4788729 *Jan 9, 1987Dec 6, 1988Walker Robert AAir mattress with audible pressure relief valve
US4819287 *Feb 17, 1988Apr 11, 1989Jabiru IncorporatedMattress to support a woman during pregnancy
US4829616 *Sep 14, 1987May 16, 1989Walker Robert AAir control system for air bed
US4890344 *Jan 31, 1989Jan 2, 1990Walker Robert AAir control system for air bed
US4896389 *Jun 10, 1988Jan 30, 1990S.S.I. Medical Services Of Canada Inc.Inflatable air mattress
US4897890 *May 2, 1986Feb 6, 1990Walker Robert AAir control system for air bed
US4915124 *Mar 30, 1988Apr 10, 1990Jasco Products, Inc.Bladder pressure control system and method
US4949413 *Aug 3, 1987Aug 21, 1990Ssi Medical Services, Inc.Low air loss bed
US4995124 *Oct 20, 1988Feb 26, 1991Sustena, Inc.Constant pressure load bearing air chamber
US5051673 *Mar 21, 1990Sep 24, 1991Goodwin Vernon LPatient support structure
US5070559 *Jan 8, 1991Dec 10, 1991New Era Marketing, Ltd.Adjustable spinal support
US5072468 *Jan 22, 1991Dec 17, 1991Biologics, Inc.Flotation therapy bed for preventing decubitus ulcers
US5103519 *Sep 4, 1990Apr 14, 1992Hasty Charles EAir support bed with patient movement overlay
US5105488 *Apr 18, 1990Apr 21, 1992Simmons CompanyBedding configuration having variable support characteristics
US5113539 *Jul 31, 1991May 19, 1992Strell Brian MAdjustable firmness coil spring mattress with inflatable tubes
US5152021 *Mar 18, 1991Oct 6, 1992Kinetic Concepts, Inc.Low air loss bag for patient support system
US5168589 *Jun 11, 1991Dec 8, 1992Kinetic Concepts, Inc.Pressure reduction air mattress and overlay
US5425147 *Jul 29, 1994Jun 20, 1995Supplee; Ronald L.Adjustable air cushion maternity mattress
US5487197 *Aug 5, 1994Jan 30, 1996Iskra, Jr.; Joseph W.Pneumatic wheelchair cushion
US5497520 *Jul 11, 1994Mar 12, 1996Kunz; Richard D.Inflatable leg and foot support
US5502855 *Jan 19, 1995Apr 2, 1996Graebe; Robert H.Zoned cellular cushion
US5581828 *Sep 19, 1994Dec 10, 1996Price Manufacturing, Inc.Air flotation insert for wooden waterbed frame
US5603133 *Feb 17, 1995Feb 18, 1997Kinetic Concepts, Inc.Apparatus for alternating pressure of a low air loss patient support system
US5606754 *Jul 17, 1995Mar 4, 1997Ssi Medical Services, Inc.Vibratory patient support system
US5678265 *Jan 11, 1996Oct 21, 1997Meyer; Kenneth G.Inflatable cushion
US5787531 *Jul 23, 1996Aug 4, 1998Pepe; Michael FrancisInflatable pad or mattress
US5802645 *Oct 15, 1997Sep 8, 1998Kinetic Concepts, Inc.Low air loss bag for patient support
US5975629 *Aug 18, 1997Nov 2, 1999Lorbiecki; James R.Vehicle seat with inflatable bladder
US5983429 *Sep 23, 1998Nov 16, 1999Stacy; Richard B.Method and apparatus for supporting and for supplying therapy to a patient
US6098222 *Feb 21, 1997Aug 8, 2000Hill-Rom Company, Inc.Vibratory patient support system
US6282737Feb 18, 1997Sep 4, 2001John H. VrzalikApparatus for alternating pressure of a low air loss patient support
US6295675 *Dec 16, 1999Oct 2, 2001Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US6367106Sep 28, 1998Apr 9, 2002Sand Therapeutic, Inc.Therapeutic support for the reduction of decubitus ulcers
US6415814Aug 7, 2000Jul 9, 2002Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Vibratory patient support system
US6467113Sep 5, 2001Oct 22, 2002Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US6519797 *Aug 10, 2000Feb 18, 2003Dynamic Contours LlcSelf adjusting, contouring cushioning system
US6537003Aug 21, 2000Mar 25, 2003Michael David RostokerLoad restraint system and method
US6564410Jan 17, 2002May 20, 2003Roho, Inc.Valve for zoned cellular cushion
US6687936Sep 26, 2002Feb 10, 2004Roho, Inc.Valve for zoned cellular cushion
US6687937May 16, 2002Feb 10, 2004Crown Therapeutics, Inc.Moisture drying mattress with separate zone controls
US6760939Sep 25, 2002Jul 13, 2004Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US6769848 *Feb 4, 2003Aug 3, 2004Michael David RostokerLoad restraint method
US6820640Jul 8, 2002Nov 23, 2004Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Vibratory patient support system
US6941602Dec 13, 2002Sep 13, 2005Dynamic Contours, LlcSelf adjusting, contouring cushioning system
US6990700Jun 22, 2001Jan 31, 2006Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7040347Apr 1, 2005May 9, 2006Team Worldwide CorporationAir pump assembly with switching pipe
US7111348Jul 13, 2004Sep 26, 2006Hill Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US7114207Oct 30, 2003Oct 3, 2006Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7120955Oct 30, 2003Oct 17, 2006Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7152265Oct 30, 2003Dec 26, 2006Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7246394Jan 7, 2006Jul 24, 2007Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product with built-in housing and switching pipe
US7260860Mar 7, 2005Aug 28, 2007Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress system for a hospital bed
US7313837 *Sep 5, 2006Jan 1, 2008Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7346950 *Oct 30, 2003Mar 25, 2008Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7353556Sep 25, 2006Apr 8, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US7363663Jul 9, 2007Apr 29, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress with automatic width adjustment
US7380301Oct 30, 2003Jun 3, 2008Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US7398573Sep 25, 2006Jul 15, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Mattress assembly
US7461425Jul 9, 2007Dec 9, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Bed with automatically identifiable mattress type
US7464425Mar 7, 2005Dec 16, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Hospital bed
US7469436Jan 3, 2006Dec 30, 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Pressure relief surface
US7557718May 2, 2005Jul 7, 2009Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Lack of patient movement monitor and method
US7565710Jul 9, 2007Jul 28, 2009Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Support surface with inflatable width adjustment portion
US7698765Jan 3, 2006Apr 20, 2010Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Patient support
US7832039Jun 17, 2009Nov 16, 2010Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Support surface with inflatable core zones
US7845032Dec 3, 2008Dec 7, 2010Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Hospital bed
US7937791Dec 24, 2008May 10, 2011Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Pressure relief surface
US7973666Jul 2, 2009Jul 5, 2011Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Graphical patient movement monitor
US8033600May 29, 2008Oct 11, 2011Ergoair, Inc.Seat system with shock- and vibration-reducing bladders
US8104122Dec 18, 2006Jan 31, 2012Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Patient support having an extendable foot section
US8122546Nov 15, 2010Feb 28, 2012Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Adjustable width mattress with relief portions
US8146191Dec 22, 2009Apr 3, 2012Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Patient support
US8196240May 9, 2011Jun 12, 2012Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Pressure relief surface
US8429774Aug 13, 2010Apr 30, 2013Hill-Rom Industries SaLateral tilt device
US8601622Apr 5, 2013Dec 10, 2013Hill-Rom Industries S.A.Patient support apparatus including a lateral tilt device
US8671487 *Sep 12, 2011Mar 18, 2014Douglas Allen DewellAir mattress having only two inflate/deflate ports for inflating four or six separate bladders
US8745788Jul 25, 2006Jun 10, 2014Hill-Rom Services. Inc.System and method for controlling an air mattress
US8844079Jul 7, 2006Sep 30, 2014Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Pressure control for a hospital bed
US8863338Jun 2, 2011Oct 21, 2014Touchsensor Technologies, LlcTherapeutic support device allowing capillary blood flow
US8973186Dec 8, 2011Mar 10, 2015Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Optimization of the operation of a patient-support apparatus based on patient response
US9216122Oct 5, 2011Dec 22, 2015Touchsensor Technologies, LlcSupport apparatus, system and method
US9707141Jul 7, 2006Jul 18, 2017Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Patient support
US9801767 *Mar 13, 2014Oct 31, 2017Kap Medical, Inc.Patient support apparatus and method
US20020194678 *Jun 22, 2001Dec 26, 2002Chung Wang ChengInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20030165368 *Feb 4, 2003Sep 4, 2003Rostoker Michael DavidLoad restraint method
US20040117912 *Oct 30, 2003Jun 24, 2004Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20040123394 *Oct 30, 2003Jul 1, 2004Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20040123395 *Oct 30, 2003Jul 1, 2004Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20040123396 *Oct 30, 2003Jul 1, 2004Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20040244116 *Oct 30, 2003Dec 9, 2004Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20040261185 *Jul 13, 2004Dec 30, 2004Ellis Craig D.Mattress assembly
US20050028289 *Aug 8, 2003Feb 10, 2005Reza HakamiunMattress
US20050034764 *Sep 23, 2004Feb 17, 2005Hanh Barry D.Patient support system
US20050186097 *Apr 1, 2005Aug 25, 2005Team Worldwide CorporationAir pump assembly with switching pipe
US20050273940 *May 2, 2005Dec 15, 2005Robert PetrosenkoLack of patient movement monitor and method
US20060026767 *Mar 7, 2005Feb 9, 2006Chambers Kenith WMattress system for a hospital bed
US20060026768 *Mar 7, 2005Feb 9, 2006Chambers Kenith WHospital bed
US20060112489 *Jan 3, 2006Jun 1, 2006Bobey John APatient support
US20060112492 *Jan 7, 2006Jun 1, 2006Team Worldwide CorporatonInflatable product with built-in housing and switching pipe
US20060168736 *Jan 3, 2006Aug 3, 2006Meyer Eric RPressure relief surface
US20060191538 *Apr 25, 2006Aug 31, 2006Map Medizin-Technologie GmbhApplication device for breathing mask arrangement
US20060252360 *Apr 12, 2006Nov 9, 2006Mitchneck James AAircraft cabin pressurization control apparatus
US20070000061 *Sep 5, 2006Jan 4, 2007Team Worldwide CorporationInflatable product provided with electric air pump
US20070011817 *Sep 25, 2006Jan 18, 2007Ellis Craig DMattress assembly
US20070017032 *Sep 25, 2006Jan 25, 2007Ellis Craig DMattress assembly
US20070136949 *Dec 18, 2006Jun 21, 2007Sandy RichardsPatient support having an extendable foot section
US20080005848 *Jul 9, 2007Jan 10, 2008Chambers Kenith WSupport Surface with Inflatable Width Adjustment Portion
US20080010752 *Jul 9, 2007Jan 17, 2008Chambers Kenith WBed with Automatically Identifiable Mattress Type
US20080296946 *May 29, 2008Dec 4, 2008Ergoair, Inc.Seat System With Shock- And Vibration-Reducing Bladders
US20090144903 *Dec 6, 2007Jun 11, 2009Delvaux Andrew BCpr facilitating mattress
US20090217460 *Jul 7, 2006Sep 3, 2009Bobey John APatient support
US20090249552 *Jun 17, 2009Oct 8, 2009Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Support Surface with Inflatable Core Zones
US20090270770 *Jul 2, 2009Oct 29, 2009Robert PetrosenkoGraphical patient movement monitor
US20100095462 *Dec 22, 2009Apr 22, 2010Bobey John APatient support
US20110047703 *Aug 13, 2010Mar 3, 2011Jean-Francois TarsaudLateral tilt device
US20110099723 *Nov 15, 2010May 5, 2011Chambers Kenith WAdjustable Width Mattress with Relief Portions
US20110209289 *May 9, 2011Sep 1, 2011Meyer Eric RPressure relief surface
US20130061399 *Sep 12, 2011Mar 14, 2013Douglas Allen DewellAir Mattress Having Only Two Inflate/Deflate Ports For Inflating Four Or Six Separate Bladders
US20140202557 *Jan 21, 2014Jul 24, 2014Marian Paulette BullinAlternating air pressure relief cushion for a sitting apparatus
US20140259432 *Mar 13, 2014Sep 18, 2014Kap Medical, Inc.Patient support apparatus and method
US20140345058 *May 21, 2014Nov 27, 2014SEC Medical Development, Inc.Pressure Monitoring and Management Cushion System And Method Of Use
EP0213332A2 *Jul 10, 1986Mar 11, 1987hülsta-werke Hüls GmbH & Co KGControl box for the air tubes of a supporting device
EP0213332A3 *Jul 10, 1986Nov 17, 1988Hulsta-Werke Huls Gmbh & Co KgControl box for the air tubes of a supporting device
U.S. Classification5/710, 601/148, 5/910, 5/633
International ClassificationA47C27/10
Cooperative ClassificationY10S5/91, A47C27/081, A47C27/10, A47C27/082
European ClassificationA47C27/08A4, A47C27/08A, A47C27/10