US 3307549 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Marh 7, 1967 A. ZACKHEIM DISPOSABLE ENEMA BAG 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed July 8, 1964 INVENTOR. 62/ A. Z4 ems 5M1 March 7, 1967 E. A. ZACKHEIM DISPOSABLE ENEMA BAG 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed July 8, 1964 INVENTOR. 62/ AZAC/m/E/M flflf ATTORNEY March 7, 1967 E. A. ZACKHEIM 3,307,549
. DISPOSABLE ENEMA BAG Filed July 8, 1964 3'Sheets-Sheet 5- I N VENTOR 2./ ,4. Z Adi H60 United States Patent 3,307,549 DISPOSABLE ENEMA BAG Eli A. Zackheim, Princeton, N.J., assignor to Johnson & Johnson, a corporation of New Jersey Filed July 8, 1964, Ser. No. 381,156 6 Claims. (Cl. 128227) This invention relates to a disposable, collapsible enema bag suitable for administering liquids for hygienic irrigational purposes and more particularly to a bag made of a material and having a construction so economical so as to render it disposable after but a single use.
In accordance with the invention two layers of flexible water impervious sheet material such as vinyl film, by way of example, are blanked out to form a bag section and an integral discharge tube section and are appropriately sealed along edges and lines to provide a filling opening for the bag section, a device having utility in holding the bag in an elevated operable position to permit discharge of fluid thereupon, and means for maintaining the discharge tube in a folded condition along the face of the bag so as to prevent discharge of fluid from the bag after it has been filled and until it is ready for service.
Also, in accordance with the invention, there is provided an improved discharge nozzle, economic in structure and which is inserted in the end of the discharge tube in a novel manner. The discharge nozzle cooperates to maintain the discharge tube in a folded condition during storage and also preparatory to use so as to prevent inadvertent discharge of the fluid contents. The invention further contemplates a discharge tube blanked out in an unique form which is economical of material and which permits, from material that would otherwise go to Waste, formation of a flat pocket-type bag large enough to store and protect the enema bag in a folded condition prior to use.
A better understanding of the invention may be had from the following description read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an enema bag kit ineluding an envelope containing an enema bag incorporating the present improvements, folded flat therein with a card giving directions ofuse;
FIG. 2 is a somewhat larger perspective view of the kit shown in FIG. 1 but with a portion of the envelope broken away to show the folded enema bag inside;
FIG. 3 is a perspective view looking at one side of the improved enema bag removed from its envelope and unfolded ready for filling;
FIG. 4 is a diagrammatic plan view of the improved enema bag with discharge tube fully extended;
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the top portion of the improved enema bag looking at the side opposite that shown in FIG. 3 and with a portion of one wall partly broken away to show the underlying construction of the filling opening;
FIG. 6 is a transverse sectional view on line 6-6 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is a longitudinal sectional view on line 77 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 8 is a partial longitudinal sectional view on line 8-8 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 9 is a perspective view of the improved enema bag in a vertical position during filling;
FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a filled enema bag lying on its side ready for use;
FIG. '11 is a partial sectional view on line 1111 of FIG. 10;
f FIG. 12 is a partial sectional view on line 1212 of FIG. 9;
3,307,549 Patented Mar. 7, 1967 FIG. 13 is a partial vertical sectional View through the filling opening after the bag has been filled showing the bag up side down to illustrate the manner in which the filling opening closes itself;
FIG. 14 is a partial vertical sectional view through the discharge tube taken near the discharge nozzle and illustrating the absence of air in the tube as the fluid starts to flow toward the discharge nozzle;
FIG. 15 is a perspective view of the improved enema bag filled with fluid and with the discharge tube extended for normal use;
FIG. 16 is a partial perspective view of the enema bag filled with tube extended and illustrating a method of controlling fluid flow;
FIGS. 17, 18, 19 and 20 are perspective views illustrating various phases in the attachment of the nozzle to the discharge tube;
FIG. 21 is a longitudinal sectional vie-w on line 2121 of FIG. 20; and
FIGS. 22 to 25 inclusive illustrate a different embodiment of the invention in which the discharge tube is blanked out in different form to conserve material.
The improved enema 'bag comprises essentially a body or bag portion 10 for fluid to be administered and an integral elongated discharge tube 11 leading from a bottom or discharge end of the bag portion to a nozzle 12 through which the fluid is to be discharged (-FIGS. 3 and 4). The bag portion 10 and tube 11 may be blanked out in appropriate form from two layers of thin inexpensive thermoplastic sheet material such as vinyl film, which then may be sealed along appropriate portions of their marginal edges to form side walls 10a and 10b. Thus, the bag and tube each comprise two layers of sheet material or side wall sections which prior to use are disposed in face to face contact and substantially devoid of air in between.
The opposed sheets of material comprising the bag and the tube have a continuous marginal seal 13 along one edge from the nozzle 12 to the top of the bag, and marginal seals 14 and 15 along the opposite edges of the tube and bag with an intermediate marginal seal 16 at the bottom of the bag interconnecting seals 14 and 15. Such seals are sufllciently strong to contain the fluid and for the purpose intended. If desired, the bag along one portion of its marginal seal 13 may have a second seal 17 parallel to marginal seal 13 but spaced inwardly therefrom, and which, at spaced intervals therealong, may be extended inwardly into the area between it and the marginal seal 17 to provide indicia 18 indicating a given fluid content in the bag when the fluid level is at a given mark (FIG. 3).
The bag is formed at the top with a filling opening 1%, with devices 20 to facilitate supporting the bag in a vertical position, and with a device 2-1 for holding the nozzle 12 in a given position when the bag is not in use and during certain phases of the bags use for a purpose which will be evident as the description proceeds. In the region of the bag opening and in the region containing the bags supporting devices there are two additional layers of film material 22 and 23 constituting flaps disposed normally in contact one with the inner face of each outer wall portion 10a and 10b of the bag. The flaps 22, 23 extend completely across the bag at the top and downwardly from the top but only for a relatively short distance where they are coterminous along a line extending transversely of the bag portion.
The filling opening 19 is defined at one side by a portion of edge seam 15 at the top of the bag. In this portion of edge seam 15 all four layers of film material i.e., the two outer bag layers 10a and 10b and the two intermediate flaps 22 and 23 are joined together in one longitudinal seam as at 24. Along the top edge of the bag in the vicinity of the filling opening outer bag layer 16a is sealed along its edge to the adjacent edge of its underlying flap 22 to form a seal 25 and in like manner a similar seal 26 is formed between outer layer 1012 and underlying flap 23 (F165. 4, 5 and 7). All four layers of material 10a, 10b, 22 and 23 are connected together by a seal 27 extending fro-m the top of the bag near its center downwardly to near the lower edges of flaps 22, 23 and then laterally while still within the region coextensive with flaps 22, 23 join with seal 17 which, as will be recalled, is spaced somewhat inwardly from edge seam 13. Seals 25 and 26 which join the outside walls of the bag with the adjacent underlying flaps 22 and 23 in the region of the filling opening 19 extend from the filling opening beyond the intermediate seal 27 to the opposite edge of the 'bag where it joins the outermost seam 13. From what has been said it will be clear that the filling opening is defined by edge seam 24 and intermediate seam 27 at the sides and the separable edge seams 25 and 26 at the top. Edge seams 25 and 26 are located one above the other by extending one face of the bag in the region of the filling opening beyond the other face of the bag so as to facilitate separation of the parts for the filling operation.
In the top region of the bag alongside the filling opening and defined by seals 13, 25, and 27, there are four layers of material which are held together by three circular seals 23, 29, and 30. The material defined by the circular seals is removed to leave three holes, the two relatively large holes of the device 20 which accommodate the fiingers to facilitate carrying or supporting the bag, and the third smaller hole 21 somewhat lower down which is just large enough to accommodate the retain by friction the nozzle 12 disposed at the end of discharge tube 11.
The discharge tube 11 is formed in one of its edges with an offset ear 32 located approximately about the same distance from the bottom seal 16 of the bag portion as such seal is spaced from the hole 21 designed to accommodate discharge nozzle 12 (FIGS. 3 and 6). In packaging the bag for storage prior to use, that portion of the tube between seal 16 of the bag and the ear 32 is folded to lay upon and in contact with one face of the bag and with a hole 33 provided in the ear located substantially in registry with hole 21 near the top of the bag. The portion of the discharge tube between ear 32 and nozzle 12 is then looped upon itself and the nozzle inserted first through the hole 33 in ear 32 and then through the hole 21 at the top of the bag. This is accomplished without twisting the tube so as to present a substantially fiat fold 34- -at the juncture of the bag and tube. Bag 10 with the tube 11 thus folded against it may then be folded twice upon itself in manner to leave nozzle 12 where it projects through hole 21 exposed at one face of the unit. The unit thus folded is placed in a thin envelope 35 which likewise may be made of a thin thermoplastic material with a heat seal 36 along at least three edges (FIGS. 1 and 2). An enema bag thus folded and arranged in an envelope of the type mentioned provides a very thin package with minimum bulk and which may be readily stored. If desired a card 37 containing instructions for proper use may be included in the envelope.
The operation of the improved enema bag unit is illustrated in FIGS. 9 to 16. The bag unit is removed from the envelope and unfolded but without removing the nozzle 12 from its position in the hole 21 at the top of the bag so as thus to maintain the sharp fold 34 at the point where the dicharge tube meet-s the bag. The seals 25, 26 constituting the top rim of the bag in the region of the filling opening are separated for insertion of water faucet F (FIG. 12). During the filling procedure, the bag is held with facility by two fingers passed through the two holes 21) whose spacing is convenient for that purpose. The preferred material of the bag being transparent, :fiuid level readily may be observed and quantity accordingly judged by comparing the fluid level with the indici-a 18 along the edge of the bag. The fiat fold 34 at the point where the bag merges into the discharge tube acts as a valve substantially to prevent fluid from passing into the discharge tube. To the extent that any fluid does pass the fold 34, it is insignificant insofar as operation of the bag is concerned. When the bag is filled the desired amount, it is removed from the faucet F and the parts of the filling opening caused to assume their face to face relationship by running thumb and forefinger with the application of pressure across the top of the filling opening. The construction of the filling opening is such that no fluid normally can be lost therethrough regardless of the position of the bag. In other words the filling opening is self-sealing and even though the bag may be positioned upside down (FIG. 13), or lying on its side (FIG. 11), no liquid will be discharged due to the fact that fluid fiows between the bag walls 10a, 10b and the adjacent flaps 22, 23 causing said flaps to engage one another under fluid pressure to hold the bag closed. The smooth cast properties of their adjacent films effect a cohesion which also contributes to the sealing of the bag.
The bag in use may be laid alongside the patient and the nozzle 12 withdrawn from the hole near the top of the bag where until now it has been secured (FIG. 10). Even in this position of the bag no fluid is discharged from the tube because the sharp fold 34 in the tube 11 at the lower end of the bag prevent-s it and no fluid is discharged from the filling opening either because in this position of the parts, flaps 22, 23 of the filling opening seal it off as previously described (FIG. 11). Nozzle 12 is inserted in the body cavity to be irrigated and the bag raised to eliminate the fold 34 in the tube at the lower edge of the bag (FIG. 15). There is no necessity to delay insertion of the nozzle until the tube is filled with liquid to discharge air from the tube as is usually the case, because since the tube surfaces have been in face to face contact prior to use, there is no air in the tube to be discharged. To describe it differently and, as shown in FIG. 14, the inner surfaces of tube 11 shown in solid lines are normally in contact and the tube consequently is dvoid of air. Passage of fluid through the tube bulges it to the dot and dash line position shown but not until the fluid contacts the tube since there is no air in advance of the fluid that the fluid can force along.
The flexible characteristics of the film material of which the bag and tube are made facilitate controlling the flow of the liquid through the tube merely by application of pressure on the tube between thumb and forefinger or by folding the discharge tube upon itself and pinching it between the thumb and forefinger as shown in FIG. 16. No clamp is necessary as in the case of stronger and tougher tubes of the permanent variety. If there is any fluid remaining in the bag at the conclusion of use it may be laid flat and the tube raised to allow the fluid therein to drain back into the bag. The tube then is folded flat back upon itself at the point where it meets the bag in the manner previously described at fold 34 under which conditions there is no tendency for fluid further to be discharged either through the tube or from the filling opening. Disposal of the bag may be efiected in any manner.
The improved enema bag contemplates an improved means of attachment between the nozzle 12 and discharge tube 11. The improved'nozzle preferably is of plastic material with central bore 38 and with its outer surface tapering slightly toward a discharge end 39 from its opposite end which is equipped with a flange 40 presenting a small shoulder where it radiates from the outer wall of the nozzle. Indeed, a well known form of eye dropper presents a construction adequate for use with the improved construction about to be described. The nozzle 12 is inserted end-wise into the free end of the discharge tube, flange end foremost, until only a small portion of the tapered end of the nozzle remains exposed (FIG. 17). The marginal sealed edges 13, 14 of the discharge tube adjacent the end of the nozzle are wrapped around the nozzle toward each other and, if large enough, until they overlap. (FIG. 18.) A plastic collar 41 is fitted over the end of the nozzle and over the overlapping portions of the discharge-tube. (FIG. 19). The relative positions of the collar 41 and tube 11 at this point are such that the outer end of the tube extends just beyond the outer end of the collar. The nozzle now is held at the discharge end and tension applied to the tube to draw the collar down along the nozzle until it is arrested by the shoulder presented by flange 40 thereon. As the collar is drawn along the nozzle by the application of tension to the tube, increasing pressure is exerted by th collar on the tube because of the increase in diameter of the nozzle as the collar approaches the flange. Finally, endwise pressure is exerted on the collar to clamp the tube firmly against the flange. A fluid tight connection is thus easily, cheaply and readily secured.
A different embodiment of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. 22 to 25 inclusive. In this embodiment, the construction for the most part is the same as before except that its discharge tube 50 is blanked out in the form of a U having two straight legs 51 and 52 of substantially equal length joined by an interconnecting round portion 53. Dieing the blanks out thusly provides substantial economy in that there is much less waste material. Furthermore, from that area of material between the legs of the U-shaped tube and which otherwise would be pure waste, there can be died out a blank 54 (dot and dash lines) for the envelope in which the bag is to be packaged.
The curved section 53 of the discharge tube at the base of the U is wider than the linear tube portions and accordingly presents a greater cross sectional area in the tube in this region when filled with liquid than in such linear portions. A U-shaped tube during use tends t kink in its U-shaped section and close off flow unless the volume of flow through the tube in use is such as to impart sufficient rigidity to hold it open. Of course, if the volume is sufiicient for the purpose, the tube may have uniform cross section throughout. However, if the volume otherwise would not be sufficient, kinks that prevent flow may be eliminated by making the curved U-shaped portion 53 of the tube of larger cross-sectional area than the straight leg portions. The enlarged cross-sectional area in the U-shaped portion of the tube 53 tends to make that portion of the tube substantially rigid as the liquid flows through it and confines its tendency to kink only at those portions of the tube 55, 56 (FIG. 25) where the curved base portion of the tube meets the straight sections thereof. Such kinks, however, do not cut off liquid flow.
To insure flatness in the U-shaped tube in its folded condition, it is preferred that it have a fold back upon itself in a radially direction centrally of the curved portion as at 57 (FIGS. 23 and 24). For this purpose, in addition to an ear 58 (like ear 32 in the first embodiment) a second ear 59 is provided on the other leg 51 in a position directly opposite that of first ear 58 (FIG. 22). In folding the tube for storage, nozzle 12 is passed through eyes in both ears 58, 59 with the tube folded flat before passing it through the eye 21 at the top of the bag thus to make a double loop, both flat, in the discharge tube.
There remains to be described one further feature which is applicable to both of the described embodiments. As shown in FIG. 22, the discharge tube near its exit end may have its flat walls heat sealed together along a line 60 directed from one edge seal of the tube at an acute angle across and along the tube toward the exit end thereof. This sealing of the walls of the tube together terminates before it meets the opposite marginal edge seal of the tube, so as to form a restriction 61 in the passageway of the tube. This restriction is no smaller than the cross section of the bore in the discharge nozzle. Consequently it will have no effect on the flow of the fluid through the nozzle assuming any given fluid head. However, since the passageway is smaller in cross sectional area at this point, greater ease is afforded the operator in pinching ofl the flow between the fingers.
The invention has been described in connection with preferred embodiments thereof but many modifications are included within its spirit. The invention therefore is to be limited only by the scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A disposable, collapsible bag suitable for administering liquids for hygienic irrigational purposes, comprising a bag of flexible, water impervious sheet material closed along lateral and bottom edges thereof to form a reservoir for fluid having substantial width and length, and an integral narrow elongated fiuid discharge tube communicating at one end with said reservoir at the bottom thereof for the discharge of fluid from the reservoir through said tube, the sheet material constituting the reservoir section and the discharge tube section being normally disposed, in the absence of fluid therein, in face to face contact, facilitating ready foldability of the reservoir and of the tube upon each other, means constituting a filling opening in the reservoir at the end thereof opposite its connection with the discharge tube, a nozzle at the end of the discharge tube opposite its connection with the reservoir, reinforcing sheet material secured to the reservoir near the top thereof, a retaining hole extending through the reservoir sheet material and the reinforcing sheet material adapted to accommodate passage of the nozzle therethrough, and means on the discharge tube adapted to cooperate with said retaining hole and the nozzle to hold the tube in position when it is folded against the reservoir and the nozzle passed through said retaining hole.
2. A disposable, collapsible bag according to claim 1 wherein the fiuid discharge tube is in U-form with straight outside legs and an intermediate curved connecting portion.
3. A disposable, collapsible bag according to claim 1 wherein the fluid discharge tube is in U-form with straight outside legs and an intermediate curved con necting portion, said intermediate curved connecting portion being larger in cross sectional area when the tube is filled with fluid than the individual cross sectional areas of the tube legs which it connects.
4. A disposable, collapsible bag according to claim 1 folded upon itself and inserted in a flat envelope.
5. A disposable, collapsible bag suitable for administering liquids for hygienic irrigational purposes, comprising a bag of flexible, water impervious sheet material closed along lateral and bottom edges thereof to form a reservoir for fluid having substantial width and length, and an integral narrow elongated fluid discharge tube communicating at one end with said reservoir for the discharge of fluid from the reservoir through said tube, the sheet material constituting the reservoir section and the discharge tube section being normally disposed, in the absence of fluid therein, in face to face contact, facilitating ready foldability of the reservoir and of the tube upon each other, means constituting a filling opening in the reservoir at the end thereof opposite its connection with the dischcarge tube, a nozzle at the end of the discharge tube opposite its connection with the reservoir, reinforcing sheet material secured to the reservoir near the top thereof, a first retaining hole extending through the reservoir sheet material and the reinforcing sheet material adapted to accommodate passage of the nozzle therethrough, and means on the discharge tube presenting a second retaining hole adapted to cooperate with said first retaining hole and said nozzle to hold the tube in position folded against the reservoir when the nozzle is passed through said both retaining holes.
6. A disposable, collapsible bag suitable for administering liquids for hygienic irrigational purposes, comprising a bag of flexible, Water impervious sheet material closed along lateral and bottom edges thereof to form a reservoir for fluid having substantial Width and length, and an integral narrow elongated fluid discharge tube communicating at one end with said reservoir at the bottom thereof for the discharge of fluid from the reservoir through said tube, the sheet material constituting the reservoir section and the discharge tube section being normally disposed, in the absence of fluid therein, in face to face contact, facilitating ready folda'bility of the reservoir and of the tube upon each other, means constituting a filling opening in the reservoir at the end thereof opposite its connection with the discharge tube, a nozzle at the end of the disccharge tube opposite its connection with the reservoir, reinforcing sheet material secured to the reservoir near the top thereof, a first retaining hole extending through the reservoir sheet material and the reinforcing sheet material adapted to accommodate passage of the nozzle therethrough, and means on the discharge tube comprising a plurality of retaining holes adapted to cooperate With said first retaininig hole and said nozzle to hold the tube in position folded against the reservoir when the nozzle is passed through said plurality of holes on the discharge tube and the first retaining hole near the top of said reservoir.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 960,404 6/1910 Rigby 128-227 1,294,219 2/1919 Andrus 128277 1,574,575 2/1926 Harmon et al. 128224 2,260,008 10/1941 Deshayes 150-9 X 2,568,915 9/1951 Friedman 128-224 2,811,968 11/1957 Hyatt 128--251 X 2,850,015 9/ 1958 Baxter l28227 3,079,920 3/1963 Bellamy 128272 3,122,297 2/1964 Sachs 22914 RICHARD A. GAUDET, Primary Examiner.
R. L. FRINKS, Assistant Examiner.