US 3566422 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 2, 197 A. P. KLIPPEL SPINE BOARD APPARATUS FOR RESCUE OF FRACTURE PATIENTS AND THE LIKE Filed Jan. 23, 1969 ALLEU P. KLJPPEL United States Patent O 3,566,422 SPINE BOARD APPARATUS FOR RESCUE F FRA'CTURE PATIENTS AND THE LIKE Allen P. Klippel, 7112 Wydown Blvd., Clayton, Mo. 63105 Filed Jan. 23, 1969, Ser. No. 793,514 Int. Cl. A61g 7/10 US. Cl. 82 5 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Spine board apparatus to be carried, dismantled, in emergency vehicles, for use in rescuing and tarnsporting fracture patients. A short upper board member is first secured behind the patients back and neck. The patients lower body is then secured to a short lower board member. Each of these board members has a centerline keel serving as a balancing support. When the two board members are aligned, resting on their keels and tilted downward to ward one side edge, a grooved rail is applied over the other side edges, to connect them. The assembly is then tilted to raise the lowered edges, and a second rail is applied to connect them.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION A need exists for rescue apparatus which may be used in extricating accident victims safely from an accident side and tarnsporting them to hospitals. Spine boards used to hold fracture patients immobilized, have heretofore been either full length, to accommodate the patients entire body, or short, to accommodate the upper body only; and sometimes both a long and a short board have been used in combination. Use of such boards is reviewed in the Bulletin of the American College of Surgeons, vol. 52 No. 3. It has been suggested, as in US. Pat. No. 2,511,061 to Hughes, that such boards be foldable to achieve a degree of compactness. Generally, however, such board apparatus has been so large and awkward to handle as to preclude being carried in ordinary highway patrol and similar emergency vehicles. So far as is known, no spine board apparatus has heretofore been designed to be carried disassembled, so that its unassembled parts could be used to secure and immobilize critical portions of a patients body before removal from a crashed automobile.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Summarizing the present invention generally, and without limiting it to this summary, the present spine board apparatus is normally maintained disassembled, to be carried in a compact package in a highway patrol or military or rescue vehicles, and is assembled in the actual course of rescue, as hereinafter described. An upper board member has means to restrain the head and upper body of the patient; its forward support surface terminates laterally in left and right side edges spaced from a top-to-bottom centerline. Projecting aft from the centerline is a keel or other centerline balancing support means. A lower board member, having means to restrain the lower body of the patient, is similarly constructed.
Means are provided to connect the upper and lower board members to each other with their forward support surfaces in alignment. The preferred means are grooved side rails which engage the left and right edges of the upper and lower board members. Alignment of the board members, preparatory to engaging one of the rails, is facilitated by resting the board members on their aft projecting keels, tilted toward one or the other side edges. This raises the opposite edges, aligning them so that one of said rails may be applied over them, to connect them.
Pressing down on the rail raises the lowered edges, so that a second rail may be applied to connect them.
Attachments to the two board members are used to so immobilize the patients body as to avoid further injuries. One such attachment is a lower limb support, formed by bending a metal rod to an elongated U-shape. Extending beyond the lower edge of the lower board member, it has upper, downward turned ends which engage two selected bores in the lower board member. The number and placement of these bores permits affixing the limb support in a variety of positions, to extend the elfective length of the spine board apparatus and to fit it to the individual patient.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective view of disassembled spine board apparatus embodying the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a side view of the apparatus of FIG. 1, as assembled, shown partially broken away to illustrate certain features of construction.
DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Spine board apparatus, to be assembled in the course of a rescue operation, is shown disassembled in FIG. 1 and assembled in FIG. 2. An upper board member generally designated 10 is formed of strong wood or structural plastic material. It has a forward support surface 11 which terminates laterally in a left side edge 12 and a right side edge .13, spaced equally from a top-to-bottom centerline b. Its square cut bottom edge 14, perpendicular to the centerline b, is utilized on assembly for abutting alignment with the upper edge of a lower board member hereafter to be described. Its upper edge .15 has a rectangular extension 16 for supporting the head of a patient.
Aligned along the centerline b and standing out from the aft side of the board member 10 are aft projecting support means which provide a centerline balancing support. In the embodiment illustrated these means are simple rigid keel members, specifically an upper keel member 18 and a central keel member 19, their aft projections being equal. Between them is central slot 20 through the board member 10. Adjustable means to cushion and restrain the head of the patient is secured through the slot 20. The preferred means is a head restrainer generally designated 22, consisting of a padded neck block 23 resting on a broad thick neck strap 24 having an upward-extending head pad 25. Securing strips 26, 27, preferably of Velcro material, engage the ends of the neck strap 24 to each other when folded over each other about the neck of the patient. The term Velcro material is here used to mean any of the known self-engaging soft materials, for example of the type wherein loop-like portions 26 on one side are engaged by hook-like portions 27 on the other. A downward extending bolt 28 passes downward from the neck block 23 through the slot 20 and is engaged by a wing nut 29.
To secure the upper body of the patient, a pair of upper side slots 31 spaced inwardly from the left and right edges 12, 13, hold an upper strap 33, to be secured across the chest of the patient immediately beneath his armpits and secured in conventional fashion as by a buckle 34. A similar intermediate strap 35 passes through a second pair of side slots 36.
A lower board member generally designated 40 is formed of the same material as the upper board member 10, either wood or plastic, and is of the same thickness. It has a forward support surface 41, and terminates laterally in left and right edges 42, 43 spaced equally from a top-to-bottom centerline d. Aft projecting support means, linearly aligned with the centerline d and standing out from its aft side, provide centerline balancing support. The support illustrated is a full length lower keel member 45, whose aft projection equals that of the upper and central keel members 18, 19.
The lower board member has an upper edge 46, perpendicular to the centerline d, and terminates in a lower edge 47. Its length is substantially equal to the overall length of the upper board member 10; this makes possible compact storage and easy transportation.
To provide greater length, lower limb support means is provided, to be affixed to the lower board member and project downwardly from its lower edge 47. Preferred lower limb support means is a bent rod member of steel or other material having some springiness. The shape of the rod member 50 is elongated U-shape somewhat like that of a hairpin, its bottom end being formed with an indentation and its upper ends 51 turned aft. These upper ends 51 are received within any two selected bores 53 through the lower board member. In the embodiment illustrated the bores 53 are located in three vertical lines, one along the centerline d and the others inwardly of the left and right edges respectively, This permits the bent rod member 50 to be located either at the left or the right side of the lower board member 40, to project downward from it. A soft strap or bandage, tied from the patients ankle to the bottom indentation of the rod member 50, will hold the limb in traction.
To further adapt the apparatus to fit patients of various heights, providing support and restraint for the lower body, a padded perineal post 55 is used. It has a lower rod end 56 which may be fitted into one of the bores 57 located along the centerline d and spaced at intervals below the upper edge 46 of the board member 40.
As further means to restrain the lower body of the patient, lower side slots 58 accommodate a long, lower support belt 59. As seen in FIG. 1, this support belt 59 is drawn upwardly, from the back of the lower board member 40 through one of the side slots 58, across the upper surface 41, and back through the other of the side slots 58.
In connecting the present spine board apparatus, the upper and lower board members 10, 40 are to be positioned adjacent to each other, with the lower edge 14 of the upper board member 10 abutting the upper edge 46 of the lower board member 40. Preferred means to connect the two board members 10, 40 together includes two grooved connector members or rails, generally designated 60, which extend from the upper board member 10 to the lower board member 40, over, outwardly and beneath their left edges 12, 42 andright edges 13, 43. The connector members 60 are preferably formed of metal or other rigid material to a U-shape, each having an inwardly facing groove 61 extending over its entire length. The length of the rail member 60 need not be as long as the combined lengths of the edges of the upper and lower board members 10, 40, but preferably is at least half as great, so as to provide the apparatus with strength and rigidity when assembled in the manner as shown in FIG. 2.
Adjacent to the ends of the rails 60, at an intermediate point, foot blocks '62 are secured to the undedsurfaces of the rails 60. The securement of each includes a vertical fixed pin 63 which extends across and spans the groove 61.
The spacing from each other of the fixed pins "63 adjacent to the upper and lower ends of each rail 60, has its counterpart. in the spacing of notches 65, 66 in the upper and lower board members 10, 40 respectively, at both their left and right edges. The corners of the upper and lower board members 10, 40 at their abutting edges 14, 46 are tapered, so that when these edges abut each other a triangular space is provided of approximately the same size as the notches 65, 66. Close to the left and right edges of each of the board members 10, 40 between the notches '65, 66 and such adjacent board edges, are bores 67, whose spacing corresponds to the spacing of latching bores 68 formed vertically through the rails '60.
On assembly, as shown in FIG. 2, when the upper and lower board members 10, 40 are positioned adjacent to each other with their edges 14, 46 in abutting contact, the rails 60 may be slid along the edges of the board members 10, 40 with their grooves 61 positioned partly over, outwardly and beneath the left and right board edges. When the proper point for connection is reached, the fixed pins 63 adjacent to the ends of the rails 60 will engage and seat within the notches 65, '66; and the fixed pins 63 at the midpoints of the rail members 60 will engage between the tapered corners of the board members 10, 40. Such engagement will locate the latching bores 68 of the rail members 60 in registration with the board member bores 67. Latching pins '69 are then engaged through the aligned bores 67, 68 to secure the assembly together.
A typical utilization of the spine board apparatus is in extricating persons who may be injured in automobile crashes. The upper board member 10 may be inserted behind the victims back, and the neck strap 24 fastened to hold his head firmly. The upper strap 33 is secured beneath his armpits and across his chest, and the intermediate strap 35 is secured about his body. With the upper portions of the body thus securely held to the upper board member 10, the patient is removed from the crashed vehicle.
With the lower board member 40 resting on the pavement, the lower body of the patient is placed on its forward surface 41, and the upper and lower board members edges 14, 46 are brought into abutting contact. The perineal post 55 is inserted between the patients legs into one of the bores 57 at a suitable height to support the patients crotch. While these steps are carried out, the board members 10, 40 are permitted to rest, in tilted position, on their keel members 18, 19, 45 and on their left or right edges 12, 42, 13, 43. In this position, the opposite side edges are elevated and are aligned and readily accessible. A rail 60 is then engaged onto the side edges so elevated from the pavement, in the manner shown in FIG. 2, and is latched in place by the latching pins 69.. The rescue worker then presses downwardly on the rail member 60 so first assembled, that its foot blocks '62 contact the pavement, thus raising the opposite side edges so that the other rail member 60 may be similarly applied and latched thereto. The lower support strap 59 is then drawn outwardly of the rail members 60, over them, and inward, and is buckled across the patients body. It serves not only to secure the patients lower body but also to aid in retaining the rails '60 securely in place.
(The over-all length of the assembled board members 10, 40 may be substantially less than the height of the patient; yet his condition may call for immobilizing one or both of his lower limbs. For this purpose, the bent rod member 50 is positioned to extend downwardly well beyond the lower edge 47 of the lower board member 40, and its upper ends 51 are inserted into two bores 53 which will position it appropriately, at the left or right side of the lower board member 40. A simple fabric bandage or soft strap, tied about the ankle and secured to the indented lower end of the limb support rod 50, will support the limb and may also apply traction to it.
The height of the foot blocks 62 is such that when both rails 60 are in place the assembled spine board apparatus will not tilt on the keel members 18, 19, 45 when on a flat surface. The spacing between the foot blocks 62 makes the rails 60 easy to grasp, so that the patient may be lifted and safely carried.
Use of the present apparatus greatly lessens the danger of injuries to accident victims in extricating them from the site of the accident and in transporting them to hospitals. In effect, the care of the victim commences with the step of extricating him, not at the hospital.
Such apparatus would not be available in emergency vehicles if it could not be compactly carried. One great advantage of the present apparatus is in its compactness when disassembled. Thus, although the combined length of the upper board 'member 10, the lower board member 40 and the projecting limb support 50 is greater than the height of a tall adult, all the components may be carried compactly in a bag or package which will fit easily within the trunk space of an ordinary automobile.
What is claimed is:
1. For use in transporting fracture patients,
spine board apparatus comprising an upper board member including a forward support surface terminating laterally in left and right side edges and having,
means to restrain the head and upper body of a patient,
a lower board member including a forward support surface terminating laterally in left and right side edges and having,
means to restrain the lower body of a patient,
means to connect said upper board member and lower board member to each other with their forward support surfaces in alignment,
the lower board member having a lower edge and a plurality of bores spaced from said lower edge and from each other, together with,
an elongated limb support member having upper ends turned aft,
the bores being of such size and spacing as to receive the said upper ends of the limb support member.
2. For use in rescuing and transporting fracture patients,
spine board apparatus to be assembled in the course of rescue, comprising,
an upper board member including a forward support surface terminating laterally in left and right side edges and having means to restrain the head and upper body of a patient,
a lower board member including a forward support surface terminating laterally in left and right side edges and having means to restrain the lower body of a patient,
the left and right side edges of the upper and lower board members each having a notch and a bore spaced therefrom, and
grooved connector members extending from the upper to the lower board member, over, outwardly, of and beneath their left and right edges,
each grooved connector member having fixed means vertically spanning its groove, said fixed means being spaced apart from each other a distance equal to the spacing of the notches from each other when the upper and lower board members are so positioned adjacent to each other, and
further having latch means to engage the bores of the board edges, said means being spaced from the fixed means a distance equal to the spacing, in the board member edges, of said bores from said notches,
whereby sliding the grooved connector members along the edges of the board members, until the fixed means engage within the notches, locates said connector members so that the latch means may be engaged through the bores in said edges.
3. For use in rescuing and transporting fracture patients,
spine board apparatus to be assembled in the course of rescue, comprising,
an upper board member including,
a forward support surface terminating laterally in left and right side edges spaced from a top-to-bottom centerline, and having means to restrain the head and upper body of a patient, further comprising,
a lower board member including a forward support surface terrninating laterally in left and right side edges spaced from a top-to-bottom centerline, and having means to restrain the lower body of a patient, and
means to connect said upper board member and lower board member to each other, said means including,
connector members securable to their said left edges and to their said right edges and extending from the upper to the lower board member,
the upper board member and lower board member each having means linearly aligned along the aft side of the centerline to provide centerline balancing support prior to completing their seeurement,
whereby positioning said board members tilted on such balancing support means and on their edges on one side permits insertion of that side under a portion of the body of the patient and brings their edges at the other side into alignment.
4. Spine board apparatus as defined in claim 3, wherein,
each of said connector members has a groove fittable over said edges and has foot means to support them at the level established by said centerline support means.
'5. Spine board apparatus as defined in claim 3, wherein,
one of said means to restrain the patient includes strap means, and
the outer portions of said strap means extend downward, around and over said grooved connector members,
whereby the securing of said strap means together to restrain the patient aids in retaining the grooved connector members inwardly over the edges of the board.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,489,828 11/1949 Springer 5'82 2,511,061 6/1950 Hughes 5-82 2,675,564 4/1954 Hughes 582 3,125,766 3/1964 Halperin 582 3,158,875 12/1964 Fletcher 582 8,414,914 12/1968 Gramins 582 3,423,773 1/ 1969 Yamate 5-68 CASMIR A. NUNBERG, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 128-83