US 3572318 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 23, 1971 T. N. GARLAND 3,572,318
URINE SPECIMEN COLLECTION AID Original Filed July 26. 1967 v 7 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. THOMAS N. GARLAND BY I ATTORNEY March 23, 1971 11 GARLAND 3,572,318
7 URINE SPECIMEN COLLECTION AID Original Filed July 26, 1967 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR. THOMAS N. GARLAND ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,572,318 URINE SPECIMEN COLLECTION AID Thomas N. Garland, Denver, Colo., assignor to Carol A. Wendt, Leon T. Howard, James R. Snedeker, Whitney B. Siebert, Robert F. Fiori, Robert E. Wallace, Darell W. Blair, Norman D. Paschal] and Pearl M. Blakeney, fractional part interest to each Continuation of application Ser. No. 656,229, July 26, 1967. This application Apr. 30, 1970, Ser. No. 31,843
Int. Cl. A61b /00; E03d 13/00 US. Cl. 128-2 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A disposable aid used to assist in the collection of urine specimens for medical analysis. The device is a collapsible funnel structure contoured to fit against the human body, having a stabilizer flap for attaching and positioning the device in the mouth of a container during the taking of a specimen.
This is a continuation of application Ser. No. 656,229, filed July 26, 1967, now abandoned.
The principal problems in urine collection arise from the inability of patients to accurately direct a voided urine stream into the specimen container. These problems are especially prevelant with the feminine sex. In such cases, the patient is subjected to the annoying and unpleasant experience of getting urine on her hands and clothing, not to mention the sanitary consequences. In addition, the exterior of the container is also contacted by urine which leads to further unpleasant and unsanitary conditions in subsequent handling by medical personnel. These problems just mentioned can be essentially alleviated through the use of containers having large diameter openings or providing a funnel-like device for use with the container during collection. Previous applications of the last-mentioned solution have not been feasible for a variety of reasons. For the most part, they have been bulky objects or containers not conducive to efiicient transfer, storage and other procedures of urinalysis. Many specimens are brought to the doctors office or laboratory from the patients home, thus making anything of substantial size or bulk impractical. The present invention is a collapsible lightweight structure on the order of a foldable paper cup which can be easily carried along with a small container. Under most of the present methods being used, the urine specimen is taken in one bottle or receptacle and then transferred to a test tube for the analysis. A funnel-like structure has particular utility over such methods since it can be used directly with a test tube Without the added transfer and container.
Another problem with any large diameter container or permanent funnel is the necessity of washing and sterilizing after each use. A growing trend in the medical field is toward the use of disposable items with a single use. The items are factory sealed in containers or envelopes, thus avoiding the problem of maintaining a high degree of sterilization. The afterward problem of cleaning is also avoided.
Any type of tunnel device previously used as a collection aid has been unstable and wobbly, requiring the patient to use both hands in holding the funnel and con tainer during the taking of the specimen. Such a requirement of both hands leaves the patient without means of holding away the clothing that might obstruct the position- Patented Mar. 23, 1971 ing of the assembly or the patients vision. The present invention, although a lightweight collapsible structure, can be maintained in alignment with the container during the by holding the assembly with one hand.
It is therefore the principal object of the present invention to provide a new and useful urine specimen collection aid.
Another object is to provide a funnel-shaped contoured urine collection device that can be collapsed, yet has a semi-rigid nature when opened for use.
A further object is to provide a urine collection aid that can be readily and simply attached to containers of varying sizes to form an assembly which can be held in a collecting position with a single hand.
A still further object is to provide a single use, disposable collection aid packaged in a sterile container which can be readily disposed of in the toilet stool.
Still another object is to provide a collection aid that is constructed of a low-cost material suitable for flushing through a toilet stool.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art by reference to the following detailed description of the drawings that follows.
While the invention is susceptible to various modifications and alternative constructions, certain illustrative embodiments have been shown in the drawings and are described in detail. It should be understood, however, that there is no intention to limit the invention to the specific forms disclosed, but, on the contrary, the invention is to cover all modifications, alternatives and equivalents falling within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
FIG. 1 is a plan view of a blank to be formed into a collector funnel;
FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the collector in its opened position;
FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the collector in its folded state;
FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the collector in its opened position;
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the collector aid mounted on the container, and being held by the user;
FIG. 6 is the top plan view of the collector in a partially collapsed condition; and
'FIG. 7 is a fragmentary plan view of the adhesive portion of the stabilizer flap.
Referring now to the drawings for a detailed description of the invention and, more specifically, to FIG. 1, the collector aid, generally identified by reference numeral 10, is shown in its blank form 12 as it is stamped from sheet stock. While various types of foldable sheet material can be used to fabricate the funnel, it has been found that an absorbent paper having a thermoplastic coating on one side is preferable. The blank 12 is formed with a series of score lines converging in a U-shaped cut 13 which provides for the opening 14 in the bottom of the funnel. The collector funnel 10 comprises four essentially triangular-shaped Wall panels 16, 17, 18 and 19. The score line 11 which extends the full length of the blank 12 through the center of panels 18 and 19 will, for the present description, be considered non-existent and will later be described in detail. Wall panels 16 and 1 8 are separated by a pair of pleating panels 20, 21 defined by scored lines 23, 24, and 25. When forming the funnel, panels 20 and 21 are folded together in superimposed relation onto the same plane with wall panel 16 so that score line 24 lies along dotted line 26. The three remaining corners of the wall panels are joined in a similar manner by pleating panels 28, 29, 30, 31, 32 and 33. Although all of the scored lines illustrated in the remaining three corners are not specifically identified, it can readily be seen that all of the pleating panels are folded into the plane of either side wall panel 16 or 17 with their center scored lines 34, 35 and 36 lying along dotted lines 37, 38, and 39 respectfully. At this stage of fabrication the collector 10 has a pyramid shape with opening 14 at its apex. The primary function of the pleating panels is to provide reinforcing ribs at the corners of the collector to give the light paper the needed rigidity for its intended use. A waterproof thermoplastic coating on the inside surface of the blank 12 also serves as a heat sensitive adhesive by which the overlapping panels can be held together. Other types of adhesives, of course, could be used between the panels.
Positioned along the periphery of wall panel 16 are a pair of rim panels 41 and 42 defined by a cut 43 therebetween and scored lines 44 and 45. Rim panel 41 is rolled or folded inward over itself so that it laps over the edge of the previous-mentioned pleat formed by pane s 20 and 21. The rolled edge 46 is clearly illustrated in FIGS. 2 through 6. Rim panel 42 is also folded or rolled inward against wall panel 16 to form an edge 47 which overlaps the pleat formed by panels 32 and 33. The rolled edges 46 and 47 not only secure the pleat but also reinforce the edge of the collector funnel 10. The opposing side wall panel 17 has two similar rim panels 48 and 49 defined by cut 51 and score lines 52 and 53 which are rolled or folded in the same manner as just described.
Joining the top edge of wall panel 18 is a triangularshaped stabilizer panel 50 separated therefrom by score line 54 (FIG. 1). The stabilizer panel or flap 50, is folded backward along line 54 so that it abuts the outside of wall panel 18 and extends downwardly therefrom as seen in FIG. 3. Score line 11, seen in FIG. 1, extends down the full length of the blank 12 dividing it into equal halves. When folded along line 11 the three dimensional collector funnel collapses into its two-dimensional storage configuration (FIG. 3). To open the collector funnel 10 to its operative position, as seen in FIGS. 2 and 5, the free end of the stabilizer flap 50 is merely pulled away from the front wall panel 18 as shown in FIG. 4. The effect of this positioning is to cause the score line 54, which was previously folded in half, to straighten out and hold the collector funnel open. Positioned on the side of flap 50 at its lower end is a pressure-responsive adhesive material 56 having a removable cover sheet 61 used for mounting the collector aid 10 on a container. By reason of the U- shaped cut 13, there is a tab 57 positioned in the opening of the funnel. Prior to use of the aid 10', the tab 57 is folded downward along score line 58, thus providing an opening 14. When using collection containers with a small mouth such as the tube 60 seen in FIG. 5, the downwardly-extending tab 57 assists in keeping the end of the funnel in alignment with the opening of the container.
When taking a urine specimen, the patient or medical personnel would open a sealed sanitary envelope containing the collector aid in a collapsed form. After remov ing the adhesive cover 61 the end of fiap 50 is pulled away from the remaining structure thereby opening the funnel. Alignment tab 57 is inserted in the mouth of the collection container and the adhesive portion of flap 50 is pressed against the neck of the container 60. With such a flexible type of mounting structure, the collector aid 10 can be mounted on almost any type of container. The adhesive on flap 50 and the aligned tab 57 provide a relatively firm mount whereby the combined structure can be held with one hand while the urine specimen is being taken (FIG. The free edge of the collector aid is essentially contoured to fit sufficiently close and completely surround the urethral area of the body so that the urine voided is confined within the collec or funnel 10.
The stabilizing flap 50 also maintains the collector in a semi rigid open position. The rolled edge 46 not only provides additional rigidity to the collector aid 10 but provides an edge that can be held against the patients body without any sharp or uncomfortable feeling. In viewing FIG. 2, the narrow rear portion 62 of the contoured opening in funnel 10 can also provide a support for some type tissue pad for preventing vaginal discharges from mixing with the collected urine. After the specimen has been taken, the collector aid is removed from the container and disposed.
The most desired method of disposal for sanitary reasons is in the toilet stool. Such a method requires a paper having a high capillary absorbency rate with a low wet strength.
It is understood that variations from the form of this invention disclosed herein may be made without departure from the spirit and scope of the invention and that the drawings and specifications are to be considered as merely illustrative rather than limiting.
What is claimed is:
1. A substantially funnel-shaped urine collection aid having opposed collapsible planar side Wall members converging from a large top opening to a small bottom opening having a cross-sectional dimension of a size adapted to be at least partially received within the opening of a collection container and stabilizing means hingedly connected to a side wall adjacent the top opening and having a lower extremity extending downwardly to a position adjacent the bottom opening in position to be fastened to a collection container when the bottom opening is received therein wherein the stabilizer flap is an extension of a planar member folded back at the top opening of the collection aid and extending past the bottom opening and having an adhesive means for connecting with the collection container at approximately the lower extremity of the stabilizer flap.
2. A urine collection aid comprising at least three essentially planar members interconnected to define an upwardly opening generally pyramidal funnel having a discharge opening at the apex thereof and a down turned stabilizer flap hingedly attached to at least one planar member adjacent the upper free edge thereof and essentially parallel thereto, said flap extending downwardly to a position adjacent the dishcarge opening and cooperating with the planar member from which it depends and having gripping means adapted to grip a wall of a liquid receiving receptacle when the apex of the funnel is in aligned engagement with the opening of said receptacle.
3. A urine collection aid according to claim 2 wherein said stabilizer flap is an extension of two adjacent planar members folded back at the upper edge with a fold defining a common boundary between said planar members.
4. A urine collection aid according to claim 3 wherein the stabilizer flap is provided with an adhesive means at approximately the lower extremity thereof adapted for attaching the stabilizer flap to a collection container.
5. A urine collection said according to claim 2 wherein the discharge opening is provided with an alignment means in the form of a tab located opposite the lower extremity of the stabilizer flap.
6. The collection aid according to claim 2 wherein the planar members are of triangular shape.
7. The collection aid according to claim 2 wherein the funnel is comprised of four planar members.
8. The collection aid according to claim 7 wherein the stabilizer flap is attached to two adjacent planar members.
9. The collection aid according to claim 7 wherein the collection aid comprises two small planar members and two large planar members.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,100,888 11/1937 Vine 141-337 (Other references on following page) 5 UNITED STATES PATENTS Schrader 229-15 Willis 4-110 Bartlett et a1 4-110 Sullivan 4-110 Hill 4-110 Bauman 4-110 Gibson 4-110 6 3,329,973 7/1967 Bobbe 4-110 3,351,050 11/1967 Naftolin 128-2 RICHARD A. GAUDET, Primary Examiner 5 K. L. HOWELL, Assistant Examiner us. 01. X.R.
3, 572 318 Dated March 23 1971 Patent No.
Thomas N. Garland Inventor(s) It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
In the heading to the printed specification, line 7 af' "Blakeney," insert Edwin L. Spangler Jr. and Max L Wymo' d/b/a Anderson, Spengler G Wymore both of Denver Colo.
Signed and sealed this 7th day of December 1971.
ROBERT GOTTSCHALK EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR.
Acting Commissioner of Pat Attesting Officer