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Publication numberUS3543751 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 1, 1970
Filing dateNov 29, 1967
Priority dateNov 29, 1967
Publication numberUS 3543751 A, US 3543751A, US-A-3543751, US3543751 A, US3543751A
InventorsSheffer Marcus B
Original AssigneeSheffer Marcus B
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Oral airway with inflatable cuff
US 3543751 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Marcus B. Sheffer 45999 Pickford, Northville Township, Wayne County, Michigan 48167 686,632

Nov. 29, 1967 Dec. 1, 1970 Inventor Appl. No. Filed Patented ORAL AIRWAY WITH INFLATABLE CUFF 6 Claims, 7 Drawing Figs.

11.8. C1 128/208, 128/348 Int. C1 A6lm 16/00, A6lm 17/00 Field of Search 128/208, 351,145.5, 348; 128/208, 351.1455, 348

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,270,565 6/1918: Teter 128/208 12/1925' Wein 128/208 2,705,959 4/1955 Elmore; 128/351 3,057,347 10/1962 McGee 128/351X 3,060,927 10/1962 Gattone 128/145.5 3,139,088 6/1964 Galleher, Jr. 128/208 3,205,890 9/1965 Dritz 128/351 3,211,152 10/1965 Stern 128/351 7 3,407,817 10/1968 Galleher, .Ir. 128/351 FOREIGN PATENTS 693,510 0/1953 Great Britain 128/351 Primary Examiner-Richard C. Pinkham Assistant Examiner-Paul E. Shapiro Attorney-Woodhams, Blanchard and Flynn ABSTRACT: A tubular member defining a passageway adapted to extend from the lower pharynx to a point which is external of the lips of a human patient. Membrane means encircles a major portion of the tubular member and substantially defines an airtight chamber connected by conduit means to a source of pressure fluid for inflating said membrane means.

Patented Dec. 1, 1970 3,543,751

/Z. Mk

, l ORAL AIRWAY WITH INFLATABLE CUFF BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates in general to an oral airway and, more particularly, to a type thereof attachedto and encircled by membrane means capable" of being inflated while positioned within the mouth of a patient for the purpose of holding the cheeks in a proper position for engagement thereof by a face mask used to administer an anesthetic. The inflated membrane means also provides a seal against the walls of the mouth between the inner and outer ends of the airway.

Persons, such as doctors, nurses and medical technicians, who are acquainted with the procedures for administering an anesthetic to a human patient by means of a conventional face mask, have long been aware thatthe external facial contours of certain patients result in excessive leakage of the anesthetic between the edge of the mask and the face of the patient. For example, there is a strong tendency for the cheeks to sag inwardly between the gums of edentulous patients. Other patients have naturally sunken cheeks, rather'high cheekbones and/or other prominent adjacent bone structures which also cause such leakage.

In the course of studying the foregoing problems, I discovered that leakage between the surface of the face and the edge of the mask could be overcome by puffing the cheeks outwardly against the mask.

Under some circumstances, it may be desirable to connect the outer end of the airway to' a tube which is in turn connected toa source of anesthetic, therebyeliminating the need for a face mask; However, unless the airway extends into the trachea, which may be undesirable, the anesthetic can escape along the outer surface of the airway and between the lips of the patient.

Accordingly, a primary object of this invention is the provision ofa device by means of which the cheeks ofa patient can be urged outwardly against the edges of the mask used in the administration of an anesthetic and thereby preventing leakage between the mask and the patient's face.

A further. object of this invention is the provision of a membrane adapted for attachment to and use with a substantially conventional oral airway to provide a chamber capable of being inflated within the oral cavity of the patient by an external source of pressure fluid, whereby the patient-s cheeks are moved outwardly without obstructing the normal function of the airway and whereby movement of air between the ends of the airway along its outer surface is effectively blocked.

Other objects and purposes of this invention will become apparent to persons familiar with medical equipment of this type upon reading the following descriptive material and examining the accompanying drawings; in which:

FIG. 1 is a broken, side elevational view of a device embodying the invention as applied to a human patient.

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary, bottom view ofsaid device.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along the line III-III in FIG.

FIG. 4 is a sectional view similar to that appearing in FIG. 3 and showing the expandable membrane in its inflated condition.

FIG. 5 is a sectional view substantially as taken along the line V-V in FIG. 3. I Y

FIG. 6 is a sectional view similar to that appearing in FIG. 3 and showing an alternate membrane construction.


SUMMARY OFTl-IE INVENTION The objects and purposes of the invention, including those set forth above, have been met lay-providing a'n oral airway capable of extendingfrom the lower pharynx or lower throat to a point which is external of the mouth of ahuman patient for the purpose of administering an anesthetic. The oral airway is encircled by the attached to a resiliently flexible, substantially cylindrical membrane which substantially defines an airtight, annular chamberadapted to be inflated and encircle a major portionof the oral airway. Conduit means communicates with the chamber and is conncctable to an external source of pressure fluid.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION The oral airway 10, one preferred embodiment of which is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, is provided for use in conjunction with the administration of an anesthetic to a human patient 11. The'oral airway is comprised of a tubular member 12. an expandable membrane 13 and an inflating conduit 14. A source of pressurized fluid, such as the manually actuated gas pump 16, is releasably engageable with one end of the inflating conduit 14.

The tubular member 12 (FIG. 3) has a rear curved portion 17, which is integral with, and extends rearwardly from a relatively straight frontportion 18. A flange 19 extends radially from the frontward end of front portion 18. The tubular member 12 may be made of a relatively'rigid material; such as polyethylene, or preferably of a somewhat flexible material, such as a rubber composition. In the latter instance, a rigid sleeve 21, such as of metal, is preferably disposed within the front portion 18 to prevent a collapse of that portion during use. The tubular member I2 and sleeve 21 define a passageway 22, which iscapable of extending from within the lower pharynx 34 to a point externally of the lips 32 ofthe patient. Normally, the flange 19 will be adjacent said lips 32.

The membrane 13 surrounds a majorportion of the tubular member 12 and has a-rear edgeportion 23 which is attached to the tubular member 12, as by an adhesive near the part thereof which enters the lower pharynx-or'the lowenthroatat the rear end of the oral cavity. Membrane 13 has a front edge portion 24 which is attached to tubular member 12 near the front end thereof, also by an adhesive. The expandable portion 26 of the membrane 13, whichextends between the rear edge portion 23 and front edge portion 24; defines the outer boundary of a fluid-tightchamber 27'encircling the tubular member 12.

The inflating conduit 14 (FIG. 5) has a short portion 28 which extends beneath the front edge portion 24 of membrane 13 and communicates with chamber 27. The conduit 14 preferably is constructed of a flexible material and is provided with an inflation indicator bulb 29. The pump 16 may be a FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken along the line VlI-V ll in FIG. 6.

For convenience in description, the terms upper", Ion-er, front". rear" and words of similar import will have reference to the device of the invention as appearing in FIG. I wherein the front end of the device is at the left side of the figure, The terms "inner, .outcr" and derivatives thereofwill have reference to the geometric center of the device and parts therewith.

conventional syringe having a barrel 25 and plunger 30.

OPERATION extends into the lower pharynx 34 whereby passageway 22 extends from' a point which is external of the lips 32 of patient 11 into the lower pharynx 34.

The source of pressure fluid, here the hand pump 16. is connected to the inflating conduit 14 and fluid, preferably gas, is

pumped through said conduit I4 into chamber 27 causing portion 26 of membrane 13 to expand within the oral cavity 3! and thereby force the cheeks (not shown) of patient 11 outwardly. The indicator hulb 29 is inflated by the gas and in- The bulb 29 also acts as a safety device by preventing overinflation, and can beused as a reserve source ofgas should any leakage occur from chamber 27 during administration of the anesthetic. Once membrane 13 has been properly inflated, the inflating conduit 14 is closed to prevent the escape of gas.

Where the source of anesthetic is connected directly, as by a tube, to the outer end of theairway ill, the inflated membrane 13 serves substantially as a seal between the tubular member l2. and the walls of the oral cavity 31.- Thus, the anesthetic discharged at the inner end of the airway cannot escape along the outside thereof, even though the inner end of the airway is spaced from the walls of the pharynx.

Before the oral airway it) is removed from the mouth of the patient, the chamber 27 is deflated through conduit 14. The tubular member l2 is then withdrawn from the mouth of the patient.

K ALTERNATE EMB DIMENT The alternate embodiment of the invention, illustrated in FIGS. 6 and 7, has an oral airway WA which is similar to oral airway it Thus, certain parts of oral airway 10A will be referred to by the same reference numerals designating the corresponding parts of the oral airway 10, but with the suffix A added thereto.

The oral airway 10A has a tubular member 12A including a rear curved portion 17A, a front'straight portion 18A and a radially extending flange 19A. The front portion 18A includes an internal, rigid sleeve 21A. The expandable membrane 35,

which encircles a major portion of tubular member 12A, has

an inner sleeve 36 integral at its forward edge 37 and rearward edge 38 with the front and rear edges, respectively, of an outer elastic sleeve 39. The sleeves 36 and 39 define a sealed chamber 27A. The inflating conduit liA extends through the edge 37 of membrane into communication with chamber 27A and is connectable to a pump'id The operation of oral airway MA is identical to the abovedescribed operation of oral airway 10 with the exception that, when inflated, the pressurized gas is contained between the sleeves 36 and 39. The expandable membrane 35 may be releasably secured to tubular member 12A, thereby being replaceable. if desired, sleeve 36 may be permanently secured to tubular member 12A by an adhesive.

Although particular preferred embodiments of the invention have been disclosed above for illustrative purposes, it will be understood that variations or modifications thereof, which lie within the scope of the appended claims, are fully contemplated,

Iclaim: 1. An oral airway adapted for use .in administering an anesthetic to a human patient, comprising:

an elongated tubular member of sufficient length that one end is adapted to be positioned adjacent to but externally of the lips of the patient and the other end is adapted to be positioned in the region of the lower pharynx of the patient, the tubular member having a curved portion positionable'within the mouth of the patient; resiliently flexible and inflatable member means disposed adjacent said one end of said tubular member and adapted to be positioned within the mouth of the patient for sealingly engaging and supporting the patients checks in a proper-position for engagement thereof by a face mask used to administer an anesthetic, said membrane means encircling said tubular member including part of said curved portion over at least approximately one-half of the length of the member, said membrane means having opposite axial edges disposed in engagement with said tubular member with one of the axial edges being positioned closely adjacent said one end of said tubular member; said membrane means having a resiliently flexible and expansible annular wallencircling said tubular member and defining at least the radially outer side of a fluid-tight chamber, said annular well being movable between a collapsed position wherein said wall is positioned closely adjacent said tubular member and an inflated expanded position wherein said annular wall is disposed radially outwardly from said tubular member a substantial distance for defining an annular pressurized chamber, said wall when in said expanded position being adapted to be disposed in sealing and supporting engagement with the patient's cheeks; and

conduit means held with respect to said membrane means and communicating at one end thereof with said chamber, the other end ofsaid conduit means being located at a point adapted to be positioned external of the lips of the-patient for connection to a source of pressure fluid for enabling said membrane means to be expanded by said pressure fluid to substantially fill the patients mouth whereby the annular wall of the membrane means supports and sealingly engages the patients cheeks.

2. An oral airway according to claim 1, wherein the tubular member has a substantially uniform external configuration throughout the length of that portion of the tubular member disposed within the mouth ofthe patient.

3. An oral airway according to claim 1, wherein said membrane means is secured along its opposite axial edges to the outer surface of said tubular member, and said tubular member having a radially outwardlyprojecting flange at said one end thereof, said one of the axial edges of the membrane means being secured to the tubular member at a location closely adjacent said flange.

4. An oral airway according to claim 1, wherein said membrane means comprises inner and outer sleeves tightly secured alongcorrcsponding edges to define an annular chamber encircling said tubular member, the outer sleeve constituting said annular wall and being resiliently flexible and the inner sleeve being attached to said tubular member and being capable, when said outer sleeve is inflated, ofextending along more than half of the length of said tubular member, the outer sleeve surrounding and being disposed closely adjacent the inner sleeve when the membrane means is in the collapsed position.

5. An oral airway according to claim 1, wherein said tubular member is resiliently flexible, defines a single, unobstructed passageway and has a radially outwardly extending flange at said one end thereof.

6. An oral airway according to claim 5, wherein a rigid sleeve is disposed within'the portion of said tubular member adjacent said flange.

Referenced by
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U.S. Classification128/207.15, 128/207.16, 604/97.2
International ClassificationA61M16/04
Cooperative ClassificationA61M16/0488
European ClassificationA61M16/04M