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Publication numberUS3370584 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 27, 1968
Filing dateNov 25, 1964
Priority dateNov 25, 1964
Publication numberUS 3370584 A, US 3370584A, US-A-3370584, US3370584 A, US3370584A
InventorsWilliam Girten
Original AssigneeWilliam Girten
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for the stimulation of blood circulation in the feet and legs
US 3370584 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Feb. 27, 1968 w. GIRTEN 3,370,584

APPARATUS FOR THE STIMULATION OF BLOOD CIRCULATION IN THE FEET AND LEGS 1 Filed Nov. 25, 1964 2 Shets-Sheet 1 I NVEN TOR.

William Girten I BY Elam/A. X48652 fliqrn gy Feb. 27, 1968 GIRTEN 3,3 70,584

W. APPARATUS FOR THE STIMULATION OF BLOOD CIRCULATION IN THE FEET AND LEGS Filed Nov. 25, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG.3.

Wi [Liam 6i rten Ien/llv A. )QEGEE diforr z y United States Patent Office 3,370,584 Patented F eb. 27, 1968 3,376,584 APPARATUS FGR THE STTNFULATEON 6F BLOOD CIRCULATKON IN THE FEET AND LEGS William Girten, 805 SW. 20th St, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. 33315 Filed Nov. 25, 1964, Ser. No. 418,579 4 Claims. (Cl. 12S25) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An apparatus for the stimulation of blood circulation in the feet and legs of those confined to a bed or Wheel chair comprising, a pair of foot boards against which the feet of a patient are rested and which foot boards are mounted to give a swinging or oscillating movement imparted to them by eccentric means gear-driven from an electric motor. Means is provided for regulating the positions of the foot boards and adjusting them to meet the requirements of different patients, and the pivotal points for the foot boards are located at the ankle joints whereby the feet are moved at said joints while causing little or no movement of the patients legs at or above the knees.

This invention relates to a therapeutic apparatus, and more particularly to a device for the stimulation of blood circulation in the feet and legs of those who are confined in bed or in a wheel chair, or who cannot, for various reaons, exercise their legs. The apparatus is also useful on the operating table for the prevention of blood clots.

It is an object of the invention to provide an apparatus by which the feet of the patient will be moved pivotally at the ankle joint, thereby causing little or no motion at or above the knees and permitting operations or work on a patients legs at or above the knees to take place while the apparatus is in operation.

It is an object of the invention to provide a device of this kind which will provide oscillating movement to the feet at the ankle joint to thereby cause contraction and relaxation of the muscles in the calves of the legs, thus alternately applying pressure and relieving it on the blood vessels.

More particularly, the invention contemplates the provision of a pair of foot boards against which the feet of a reclining or seated patient are rested, which foot boards are mounted to have a swinging or oscillating movement imparted to them by eccentric means gear-driven from an electric motor. Means is provided for regulating the angularity of the foot boards; for adapting them to large or small feet and to make other adjustments required to adapt the apparatus to the needs of different patients.

With these and other objects to be hereinafter set forth in view, I have devised the arrangement of parts to be described and more particularly pointed out in the claims appended hereto.

In the accompanying drawings, wherein an illustrative embodiment of the invention is disclosed,

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of an apparatus constructed in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of the same as viewed from the right of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the apparatus, with the foot boards omitted in order to more clearly disclose construction;

FIG. 4 is a rear view of one of the foot boards;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view, taken substantially on the line 5-5 of FIG. 4, looking in the direction of the arrows; and

FIG. 6 is a sectional view, in an enlarged scale, taken substantially on the line 6-6 of FIG. 1, looking in the direction of the arrows.

Referring to the drawings, 1 indicates the flat base plate of the device and upon which the operating elements of the apparatus are mounted. Secured to the top of the base plate 1 is an elevated platform member 2, upon which an electric motor 3, preferably of the substantially silent type, is mounted by means of the bolts 4 or other suitable fastening means. The motor 3 is also preferably of the non-sparking type since the apparatus may be used in an operating room, or some means may be provided for the prevention or suppression of sparking. The motor 3 is provided with an attached gear case 5 containing suitable reduction gearing for rotatively driving a shaft 6 at a relatively slow speed. The opposite ends of the shaft 6 protrude out of the gear casing 5 and mounted on each of said shaft ends is an eccentric disc 7. Each of the discs 7 is provided With a plurality of holes 8, three in number being shown in a line extending radially across the disc, for the selective reception of a threaded pin 9 serving to pivotally attach one end of a connecting rod or pitman 1t) eccentrically to the disc. The connecting rod or pitman It is provided with three holes 11 for the selective engagement by the pin 9 for adjustment purposes to be later explained.

At its opposite end each of the connecting rods 10 is provided with a thre'adably-adjustable head 12 which may be adjusted longitudinally of the connecting rod to thereby regulate the eifective length of the connecting rod, such head being pivotally mounted on a pin 13 extending between lugs 35, secured by fastening elements 14, on the back of a foot board 15. The lugs 45 co-operate in forming a clevis between the parts of which the head 12 is pivoted.

As clearly seen in FIG. 2, two of the foot boards 15 are used in the apparatus, these foot boards being substantially similar in construction. Each of the foot boards consists primarily in a fiat, suitably-shaped plate 16, provided at its lower end with a curved flange 1%, constituting a heel rest. When the feet of the patient to be treated are placed against the foot boards 15, his heels will rest in and be supported by the flanges 19. The front face of the foot boards, or that against which the feet are placed, as Well as the upper surfaces of the heel rest 19, are preferably covered with a soft, protective material 18, such as felt, rubber, or some other material of similar characteristics. Each of the foot boards may, if desired, be provided with a number of strap-receiving slots 21 (FIG. 2) by means of which the feet may be securely held against the foot boards, which slots, while shown in FIG. 2, are omitted from FIG. 4 since the necessity for and use of the same is optional.

Mounted on the base plate 1 in side-by-side relation is a pair of similar substantially U-shaped brackets 22 and 23, each of these brackets being firmly mounted upon the base plate by means of screws 24 or equivalent fastening elements. Each of the brackets 22 and 23 includes a pair of spaced upstanding flanges 25, between which one of the foot boards is pivotally mounted for oscillation. At its lower end, each of the foot boards is provided with a yoke 28 secured to it by means of rivets 27 or other fastening means. Each of the yokes 28 includes a pair of forwardly-extending, parallel arms 29 and each of these arms is longitudinally adjustable in a channel-shaped piece 30. Each of the channel-shaped pieces 30 is pivotally mounted at one end on a pin 31 secured in one of the flanges 25 of the bracket 22 or 23. The arms 26 of the yokes 28 are each provided with a plurality of spaced, internally-threaded holes 32 (FIG. 6) adapted to selectively receive a threaded set-screw 33, having a knurled head 34 for its convenient manipulation. The set screw 33 serves to couple the channel pieces 39 and the arms 29 together to form two-piece arms, and the length of the tW0-piece arms thus resulting can be 1 three holes 32 provided in the arms 29 A'single hole is :provided in the channelpieces 30 through which the set of'the" eccentric discs 7 coupled to the foot boards'15 through the connecting rods 10,ft he foot boards will be oscillated, thus causing the feet of thepatient in contact withthem to be pivotally moved or oscillated forwardly and backwardly at the ankle joint. The action'of the apparatus from 'anypivotal movement thereaboye, so that nomotion of the legs takesplace at or above theknees, thus permitting work or operations on the 'legs above the, knees-while the apparaus is in operation. Also, while. described, it stimu the apparatus is in operation as above lates blood circulation, causing contraction and relaxation ofthemuscles in the calves of the legs, thus alternately applying pressure and release of pressure on the blood vessels andso' stimulating 'the circulation.

It has alsobeen found that the oscillation of the feet at the ankle increases the flow of blood to the feetand hencetendsto warm cold feetmadeso by poor circula tion, and pro'vidinga. relaxing action, it actually serves to induce sleep. At the end of a three-hour test it was;

found that no fatigue .resulted. While the apparatus has been found primarily useful for the operating table and for can he made in multiple for use by such as polio patients. .The small size of the present apparatus is such that it can be used at the end of a bed of conventional length.

The motor employed is preferably of the silent type approximately 180 to 1,

and'the gear reduction usedjis which has beenfound to be the mostdesirable speed, although means can be readily" provided for the regulation of speed to meet various requirements.

l The h'eelrests' 19 serve to hold the feet in proper position against the foot boards and the pivot points 31 for the foot boards are located at the proper pivot points of the ankles. This is an important feature of the apparatus, since it is desirahlejthatfthe movement of the feet shall take place at theankles as distinguished from the knees. There is an adjustment provided to adapt the foot boards to large orsmall feet, which adjustment is attained through the selective use in the connecting rods inv cooperation with the selective use of the three holes 32 in the yokes 28. This adjusts the distance of the foot boards from the position of the pivot pin 31. The three holes 8 in the eccentric are selectively used to regulate the length of the stroke. The angle of the foot boards is adjusted by means of the threadable heads 12 on each of the connecting rods 10.

-By the arrangement of the eccentric discs and the attachment of theconnecting rods thereto, the foot boards are caused to move alternately, but the device can be readily adjusted to cause the foot boards to be moved in unison.

For convenience in carrying the apparatus or moving in from place to place, a handle is provided. In the form shown, the same consists of an inverted U-shaped strap or metal, shown at 40, and having feet 42 at the lower ends of its legs, which feet are riveted or otherwise secured to the-base 1 by rivets 4l 9; Other fasteni g means.

is such that the pivotal movement of the feet occurs at the ankles as distinguished bed-confirmed patients, itcan also be used by wheel-chair patients, or the structure agroup of patients,-

of the three holes 11 enetsheath set ene in n w Having thus described a single embodiment of the invention, iti s obvious that the same is not'to'be" restricted thereto, but is broad enough} to cover all structures coming within the scope of the annexed claims.

What I claim is:

' 1. An apparatus for the stimulation of blood circulation in the feet and legs comprising, a pair of foot boards, a base, brackets mounted thereon, yokes having one end connected to the bottoms of the foot boards and extending substantially normal to the, foot boards, with the other ends of the yokes pivotally connected to the brackets, a motor mounted-onthe base, eccentric means driven from the .rnotor, the pivotal pointsfor the foot boards being to one side of the upper face thereof and so constructed' and arranged that the pivotal points are at the ankles when the patients feetare rosting against the foot boards, and connecting -means between said eccentric means and thefoot boards by which the'foot boards arepivotally oscillated about horizontal axes to thereby move the feet of the patient-on the foot'boards at the ankle joints only, while causing little or no movement of the patients legs at orabove the knees;

. 2. In-an apparatus-as provided for in claim 1, wherein the eccentric means consists of eccentrically-mounteddiscs and connectingfrods between such discs and'the foot boards.

3. An apparatus for the stimulation of blood circula-I tion in the feet and legs comprising, a base, a motor mounted thereon, reducing gearing driven by the motor and including a shaft rotatively driven from said gearing, a pair of eccentric discs on the shaft, a pair of foot boards,

supports rising from the base, yokes having one end connected to the bottoms of the foot boards with the opposite ends of the yokes being connected to the sup-.

ports, and connecting rods extending between the foot boards and the eccentric discs, the pivots for boards being so located as to position them at the ankles of a patients feet when his feet areresting against-the foot boards, said yokes including arms extending from the foot boards to said pivots,;said arms being xlongi tudinally adjustable, the connecting rods being adjustable as to length and the connecting rods'having means 'by which they can be attached to the eccentric discs at various points along their lengths.

4. An apparatus for the stimulation. of bloodcirculation in the feet and legs comprising, a basemember, a pair-ofU-shaped-brackets located in side-by-side relation on the top of the base member, a pair of foot boards,

a yoke mounted oneach of the'foot boards, each yoke,

having a pair of longitudinally-extensible side arms pivotally mounted in each of the and arranged that the pivotal points a connecting rod for each foot board, means for regulating the length of each connecting rod, means at'the back of each foot board for pivotally connectingrit'tov the end ofone of the connecting rods, amotor. mounted on the.

' means including ,a rowofspaced holes through each connecting'rod and a'radiall-y-extending row of spaced holes 'in the eccentric discs, and pins for selective positioning in said holes.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,081,365 5/ 1937 Mueller et al. 12825 2,216,764 10/1940 Clark 128-25 2,815,020 12/1957 Barkschat l28-- 2 L. W. TRAPP, Primary Examiner.

the foot brackets and so constructed 7 are at the ankles when the patients feet are resting against the foot boards,

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2081365 *Nov 16, 1934May 25, 1937Mueller HilmarFoot vibrator
US2216764 *Jun 1, 1937Oct 8, 1940Clark Charles WFoot muscle exercising machine
US2815020 *Sep 16, 1955Dec 3, 1957Eric BarkschatAutomatic exerciser for feet and legs
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3789836 *Dec 7, 1972Feb 5, 1974Scott JApparatus for the stimulation of blood circulation in feet and legs
US4159111 *Jun 21, 1977Jun 26, 1979Scholl, Inc.Leg exercising apparatus
US4185622 *Mar 21, 1979Jan 29, 1980Swenson Oscar JFoot and leg exerciser
US5067479 *Aug 21, 1990Nov 26, 1991Toronto Medical Corp.Continuous passive motion device
US5421801 *Jun 8, 1993Jun 6, 1995Davies, Iii; D. RobertStretching machine
US5674262 *Jan 26, 1996Oct 7, 1997Kinetic Concepts, Inc.For stimulating blood flow velocity in a leg of the body
US6010468 *Mar 5, 1998Jan 4, 2000The Discovery Group, LlcFoot flexion device
US6758825 *Jun 7, 2002Jul 6, 2004Anthony MathewPortable physical therapy apparatus
US6860837 *Sep 29, 2003Mar 1, 2005Huang-Tung ChangSurfing exerciser
US7179236Jun 7, 2001Feb 20, 2007Galvez Campos Jose LuisSystem for exercising the lower extremities in seated persons
US7220234Dec 23, 2003May 22, 2007Breneman James CExerciser device for lower legs
US7429236Oct 19, 2004Sep 30, 2008Icon Ip, Inc.Exercise device with single resilient elongate rod and weight selector controller
US7458922Sep 19, 2005Dec 2, 2008Pisciottano Maurice AStretching apparatus and associated method
US7537552Aug 25, 2003May 26, 2009Icon Ip, Inc. (State Of Delaware)Exercise device with centrally mounted resistance rod and automatic weight selector apparatus
US7798946Jul 30, 2007Sep 21, 2010Icon Ip, Inc.Exercise device with centrally mounted resistance rod
EP0205018A2 *May 24, 1986Dec 17, 1986Samuel HeatonLeg exerciser
WO2002045644A1 *Jun 7, 2001Jun 13, 2002Campos Jose Luis GalvezSystem for exercising the lower extremities in seated persons
WO2011042909A1 *Oct 11, 2010Apr 14, 2011Vascuactive Ltd.Devices for functional revascularization by alternating pressure
Classifications
U.S. Classification601/31
International ClassificationA61H1/02
Cooperative ClassificationA61H1/0266
European ClassificationA61H1/02L5