US 3435821 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 1969 J.'M. BENNETT 3,435,821
SURGICAL DRAPE Filed m 19. 1966 INVENTOR JOSEPH M. BENNE TT ATTORNEYS.
United States Patent 3,435,821 SURGICAL DRAPE Joseph M. Bennett, 1 Thomas Powell Blvd., Farmingdale, NY. 11735 Filed July 19, 1966, Ser. No. 566,344 Int. Cl. A61g 13/00; A61f /44 US. Cl. 128-132 12 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention relates generally to a surgical drape for use during surgery and, more particularly, pertains to a drape which is adapted to be received in a body cavity during an operation.
In certain surgical operations and, in particular, in operations involving abdominal surgery, it is common practice to pack sterilized cotton wadding or the like about severed fluid carrying tubes or ducts to sponge up and absorb the fluids and to close the tubes to stop the flow of the fluid. The sponging wadding is utilized to absorb the waste drippings which flow out of the open ends of the severed tube prior to closing the same or which may leak out of the tubes after they have been closed to prevent contamination of the body cavity by this liquid waste. However, this practice has been found to be extremely inefficient and uneconomical.
For example, it is extremely time-consuming to pack absorbent material i a body cavity during an operation. Moreover, if this material becomes saturated with the waste liquid it provides an environment which is conductive to the growth of bacteria. This, of course, may result in disastrous consequences. Accordingly, the saturated wadding must be replaced frequently by clean material. As a result, this practice has been looked upon with continuing disfavor by surgeons and doctors since the removal of the saturated material and the packing of the clean material disrupts the operation.
Additionally, problems arise in attempting to close the severed end of the tubes. conventionally, the closing of the tubes is accomplished by utilizing rubber shod or atraumatic clamps to collapse and seal the open ends of the severed tubes. However, during the course of an operation the clamps often become dislodged whereupon the closed tubes open thereby to allow additional waste fluid to enter the body cavity. Thus, the surgeon must interrupt his work until the clamps are again positioned about the tubes.
Accordingly, a desideratum of the present invention is to provide a surgical drape which is adapted to be quickly and easily positioned in a body cavity during an operation to prevent contamination of the body cavity by liquid waste.
A further object and feature of the present invention resides in the novel details of constructio which provide a surgical drape which includes means for closing the open ends of a severed tube in the abdominal cavity during an operation to prevent the flow of contaminating liquids out of the tubes and into the cavity.
In many surgical cases it is highly desirable that a surgeon observe the areas adjacent to the area which is undergoing the operation. This is practically an impossibility in the prior art practice since the wadd-ing or ab sorbent material is opaque and hides the body portion ice therebelow from observation. Hence, it is a further object of the present invention to provide a surgical drape which retains waste liquids on its upper surface and which is transparent to afford the surgeon an unobstructed view of the areas of the abdomen bordering on the area undergoing the operation.
In furtherance of the above objects, the surgical drape of the present invention includes a. flexible sheet which is adapted to be placed within the body cavity of a patient during an operation. The sheet is impervious to body liquids and, in practice, may include at least one pair of tube-sealing areas on the sheet. Each one of the tube-sealing areas includes tube-receiving means for receiving a portion of a severed tube therethrough. Tie means may be provided which surround the tube-receiving means and are adapted to be grasped by the surgeon to draw the sheet tight about the severed tube to seal the open ends of the severed tube thereby to prevent waste fluid from flowing out of the tube and into the body cavity. Since the drape is impervious to liquids it retains all such contaminating fluids or liquids on the upper surface thereof thereby to maintain the body cavity free of the contaminating liquids.
Other features and objects of the present invention will become more apparent from a consideration of the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a surgical drape constructed in accordance with the present invention, illustrating the position of the drape relative to a human body during an operation;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged detailed side elevational view of the surgical drape shown in FIG. 1, illustrating the sheet sealing the open end of a severed tube;
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of a modified embodiment of a surgical drape; and
FIG. 4 is another embodiment of a surgical drape constructed according to the present invention.
The surgical drape of the present invention is designated generally by the numeral 10 in FIG. 1 and includes a flexible sheet 12 which is impervious to liquids. In practice, the sheet 12 comprises a transparent sheet of plastic material. However, this construction is by way of example only and is not to be interpreted as being a limitation on the present invention because any flexible sheet which is impervious to liquids may be utilized. Additionally, the sheet 12 is fabricated from a material which may be sterilized at relatively high temperatures without atfecting any of the physical properties of the sheet.
Defined on the surface of the sheet 12 are two tubereceiving areas respectively designated 14 and 16. The areas 14 and 16 are spaced from each other by a preselected distance which, in the embodiment shown, is approximately equal to the spacing between those tubes which are to be severed during the operation. Under normal conditions, this spacing will be approximately 35 centimeters.
Each of the areas 14 and 16 includes a reinforcing section 18 which is connected to the. surface of the sheet 12 in any conventional manner as by cementing the same to the sheet. On the other hand, the sections 18 and the sheet 12 may be fabricated as a single integral unit. Entranceway apertures 20 and 22 are defined on the surface of the sheet in each of the areas 14 and 16 and extend through the sheet 12 and the reinforcing sections 18. Received between the sheet 12 and the sections 18 and extending about the apertures 20 and 22 in spaced relation thereto are respective bands or tapes 24 and 26. More specifically, the tape 24 surrounds the aperture 20 and the ends of the tape 24 extend longitudinally outward beyond the left side edge of the section 18. Similarly, the tape 26 surrounds the aperture 22 and extends longitudinally toward the right, as shown in FIG. 1, beyond the right-hand edge of the reinforcing section 18. The ends of the tapes 24 and 26 are positioned so that they easily may be grasped by a surgeon for his use and for the reasons noted hereinbelow.
While the use of the surgical drape of the present invention will be described in conjunction with a surgical operation involving the abdomen of a patient it will be obvious that the drape need not necessarily be limited to such an operation. That is, the drape of the present invention may be utilized for any operation in which it is desired to prevent a liquid from contaminating exposed portions of the body. However, it will be assumed for purposes of explanation that the drape 10 is here employed during an intestinal operation. In such case the abdominal cavity C of a patient P will be opened in accordance with standard surgical techniques. The intestinal tube under consideration is then severed to provide twoopen-ended tubes 28 and 30.
Normally, the liquid or fluid which flows through the severed tube would then flow out of the open ends of the tubes 28 and 30 and into the body cavity C of the patient thereby to contaminate the body cavity. However, in accordance with the present invention the open ends of the tubes 28 and 30 are immediately received through the entranceway apertures and 22 in the tube-receiving areas 14 and 16 of the drape 10. The sheet 12 is of sufficient dimension so that it may be spread throughout and overlapping relation with the body cavity C thereby to prevent the fluid from flowing out of the tubes 28 and and into the body cavity. Since the sheet 10 is impervious to liquids, any contaminating liquid which flows out of the tube will simply collect on the upper surface of the sheet 12 and will not contaminate the body cavity.
As soon as the ends of the tubes 28 and 30 are inserted through the apertures 20 and 22, the tapes 24 and 26 are drawn tight about the respective tubes thereby to cause the sheet 12 to tighten about the respective tubes (FIG. 2) and collapse the walls thereof. The ends of the tapes 24 and 26 are then tied to seal the ends of the respective tubes 28 and 30 to prevent the flow of the body fluid out of the open. ends of these tubes. It will be noted that the tie strings or tapes 24 and 26, each surrounding their respective entranceway apertures through which the severed ends of the tubes are received, are in spaced relation to the aperture. Thus, the sheet surface forms the space therebetween so that when the tapes are drawn snugly and tightly about their respective intestinal tubes, the sheet surface in the space between the tie string and aperture extends along a portion of the length of the tube as seen in FIG. 2 to ensure encapsulation of the tube for a portion of its length. Moreover, this portion of the sheet surface prevents fluids which may seep out of the tubes from running down the outer wall of the tube, be tween the tube and the sheet and into the cavity C. That is, the portion of the sheet which extends along the length of the tube causes the fluid or waste drippings to flow onto the upper surface of the sheet rather than between the sheet and the tube.
If a portion of the body of the patient P other than the intestinal tube is to be operated upon, the surgeon may make an appropriate incision in the sheet 12 over that portion of the body undergoing the operation. The sheet is then separated at this point to provide an entranceway through the sheet surface that will afford the surgeon access to the particular portion of the body under consideration. As noted hereinabove, the sheet 12 advantageously may be fabricated from a transparent material so that the physician or surgeon may view those areas of the body which border upon the portion of the body of the patient P undergoing operation thereby to provide the surgeon with an unobstructed view of all portions of the cavity C.
If it is desired, absorbent material may be placed about the tube before it is severed to absorb the fluid which is initially emitted before the drape 10 is affixed in place. After the drape is positioned in the cavity in the manner described above, the sponge or absorptive material may be removed.
Accordingly, a surgical drape has been provided which performs the dual function of maintaining the abdominal cavity of a patient free from contaminating liquids and which is further operable to quickly and efliciently seal any body tubes which may be severed during the operation.
Illustrated in FIG. 3 is a modified embodiment of a surgical drape and is designated generally by the numeral 310. The surgical drape 310 is similar to the surgical drape 10 illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2 and includes a flexible sheet 312 the surface of which is impervious to liquids. Defined on the surface of the sheet 312 are tubereceiving areas 314 and 316 which include reinforcing sections 318 which overlay the sheet 312. Received between the sections 318 and the sheet 312 in each tubereceiving area are the respective tapes 24 and 26.
In practice operating surgeons find it more desirable that the intestinal tubes be encompassed within a close fitting entranceway 320-. If the entranceways 320 and 322 are of intially fixed aperture size as in the drape 18, the aperture may be too large or too small for the intestinal tube to be received therethrough. In solving this problem the surface of the entranceways 320 and 322 are normally closed and form an uninterrupted continuation of the surface of the drape 310. The entranceway surfaces are delineated and defined by weakened lines for their full lengths to provide variable dimension openings that will precisely accommodate different sized tubes therethrough. Thus, the surface of the drape 310 is initially unbroken and enables the same to be used for other types of surgical procedures as Well.
When it is desired to use the drape 310 the surgeon breaks or severs the section 318 and the aligned surface therebeneath of the section 312 along the respective weakened entranceways 320 and 322 for the desired extent of their lengths to provide openings which are substantially equal to the diameter of the respective tubes 28 and 30. That is, the drape 318 is separated along the lines or portions 320 and 322 for a preselected distance. The tubes are then received through these entranceway openings. Since the sheet 312 is flexible, the openings in the areas 314 and 316 will spread apart to provide open areas which will closely accommodate the tubes 28 and 30 therethrough. Hence, when the tubes are received through the drape 310, the drape will fit snugly about the tubes to prevent any contaminating fluid from running down into the cavity C between the drape 310 and the outer wall of the respective tube. The tubes may then be sealed by tying the tapes 24 and 26 in the manner indicated above. It should be noted that if the apertures in the drape 310 are made sufficiently small, the sheet per se may be made to constrict the tubes 28 and 30 thereby to prevent the waste liquid from flowing out of the tubes. Accordingly, the tapes 24 and 26 may be eliminated.
FIG. 4 illustrates another modified embodiment of a surgical drape 410 which is similar in construction to the drape 310. That is, the drape 410 also provides variable dimension opening. Thus, the drape 410 also includes a sheet 412 which is similar to the sheet 12. Defined on the sheet 412 are spaced tube-receiving areas 414 and 416 which include sections 418 which overlie the sheet 412 and are connected thereto. Received between the sections 418 and the sheet 412 are the tapes 24 and 26.
Defined in the sections 418 and the sheet 412 in each of the tube-receiving areas 414 and 416 are longitudinally and transversely spaced perforations which define normally closed entranceway surfaces 420 and 422, respectively. The entranceways 420 and 422 respectively terminate in free end tabs 432 and 434. The spaced perforations on the sheet surface 412 and sections 418 define a tear strip that may be torn open to any desired extent and which when torn open results in the tube receiving entranceway.
When it is desired to provide an aperture in the drape 410 to receive tubes therethrough, the tabs 432 and 434 are grasped by the surgeon and are pulled back so that the strips 420 and 422 defined by the perforations are separated from the sheet 412 and section 418. As the strips 420 and 422 are separated from the drape 410 they expose -a lengthening entranceway opening which can be formed substantially equal to the diameter of the respective tubes 28 and 30 to closely receive the same therethrough. The tapes 24 and 26 may be used in the same manner as the tapes disclosed in conjunction with the embodiment of FIG. 1 to seal the tubes received through the drape. The surface of the sheet comprising the space between the tapes 24 and 26 and the entranceway opening extends upward along the length of the tube as shown in FIG. 2 to encapsulate a lengthwise portion of the tube thereby ensuring that spillage from the tube will flow down onto the drape surface.
While preferred embodiments of the invention have been shown and described herein, it will be obvious that numerous omissions, changes and additions may be made in such embodiments without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A surgical drape for use during surgery comprising a flexible sheet adapted to be placed within the body of a patient during an operation;
said sheet having a surface impervious to body liquids to prevent the passage of the same therethrough;
at least one pair of tube-sealing areas on the surface of said sheet; each one of said areas being spaced from the next adjacent tube-sealing area by a preselected distance;
each one of said areas including tube-receiving means for receiving a tube forming a part of the human body therethrough,
and tie means surroundings said tube-receiving means and being in spaced relation thereto for drawing said sheet tight about the tube received therethrough to close said tube to prevent the flow of a body liquid through the tube.
2. A surgical drape according to claim 1,
in which said sheet is transparent,
and the surface of said sheet forming the space between said tube-receiving means and tie means surrounding and extending along a portion of the length of the tube received in said tube-receiving means.
3. A surgical drape as in claim 1,
in which said tube-receiving means comprises an entranceway defined in the surface of said sheet,
and said tie means comprises a tape surrounding said entranceway and extending outwardly therefrom.
4. A surgical drape according to claim 1,
wherein said tube-receiving means comprises a selectively variable length entranceway defined in the surface of said sheet adapted to be opened to an area sufficicnt to receive a tube therethrough.
5. A surgical drape as in claim 4,
in which said selectively variable length entranceway includes a weakened portion in said tube-sealing areas,
whereby the surface of said sheet may be separated along said weakened portions for a selected distance to provide an opening of a preselected area.
6. A surgical drape as in claim 4,
wherein said variable length entranceway includes a strip on said sheet defined by spaced perforations, said strip terminating in a tab,
whereby said tab may be grasped by a surgeon to separate selective portions of said strip from said sheet to provide an opening in said sheet.
7. A surgical drape as in claim 1,
in which each of said tube-sealing areas includes a reinforcing section connected to said sheet,
said tie means being received between said reinforcing sections and said sheet to maintain said tie means in a preselected position.
8. A surgical drape for containing contaminated liquids during an operation comprising a flexible sheet impervious to liquids for retaining liquids on one surface there of to prevent the flow of a liquid through said sheet,
said sheet being adapted to be received in a body cavity during an operation,
and at least one predefined tube-receiving portion on said sheet adapted to receive a tube forming a part of the human body therein and to enable the tube to extend through the sheet,
said tube-receiving portion including a selectively variable length entranceway in said sheet adapted to be opened to different preselected lengths in accordance with the dimension of the tube to be received therethrough.
9. A surgical drape as in claim 8,
wherein said variable length entranceway is normally closed before use and comprises a weakened line in said sheet,
said sheet being adapted to be separated a desired distance along said weakened line to provide said variable length entranceway in said sheet.
10. A surgical drape according to claim 8,
wherein said variable length entranceway includes a strip in said sheet defined by spaced perforations, said strip terminating in a tab section,
whereby said tab is adapted to be grasped by a surgeon to separate preselected lengths of said strip from said sheet to provide said variable length entranceway.
11. A method of preventing contamination of a body cavity by liquid flowing out of the severed tube during an operation comprising providing a flexible sheet of material impervious to the passage of liquids therethrough providing spaced entranceways in said sheet each surrounded by a separate tape,
placing said sheet in said body cavity with the ends of the severed tube projecting through each one of one of said spaced entranceways,
and drawing said tapes tight about the tubes to seal the tubes and the sheet liquid-tight about the tubes and prevent the flow of liquids out of said tubes.
12. The method of claim 11, including the further step of packing absorbent material about said tubes prior to placing said sheet in the body cavity.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,030,957 4/ 1962 Melges 128-132 3,060,932 10/1962 Pereny et a1. 128-132 3,111,943 11/ 1963 Orndorff 128132 3,251,360 5/1966 Melges 128-132 ADELE M. EAGER, Primary Examiner.
US. Cl. X.R.