US 3629880 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
I United States Patent 1111 3, 2
 Inventor Johannes Nicolaas van Rhyn  References Cited Main R081], Klapmuts, Cape Province, UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,539,346 1/1951 F6151 5/86  App]. No. 855,965
2,636,188 4/1953 Lockey..... 5/86  F11ed Sept. 8, 1969 2,991,485 7/1961 Schulte 5/81  Patented Dec. 28, 1971  P iom Se t 10 1968 3,023,048 2/1962 Barton 297/330  y d of South Africa 3,107,105 6/1960 116111610... 280/250 x 31 655849 3,137,869 6/1964 Johnson 5/86 1 3,493,245 2/1970 Nabinger 5/86 Primary ExaminerKenneth H. Betts Anorney-Karl W. F locks  APPARATUS FOR ASSISTING INVALIDS 6 Clams 3 Drawing ABSTRACT: This invention relates to an apparatus for assist-  US. Cl 5/86, ing a user thereof (particularly a person who has some disabili- 297/DlG. 10, 297/D1G. 4, 280/250 ty in his legs) to stand and comprises a framework incorporat-  Int. Cl B62m l/l4 ing a raisable seat member adapted to support the seat of the  Field of Search 280/250, user, means for raising the seat member, and a knee support 249; 297/4, 5, 330,427, 428,D1G. 10, DIG. 4; adapted to engage at about knee height with the legs of the 5/81,83,86 user.
SHEET 1 [1F 3 Inventor PATENTEB was new SHEET 3 BF 3 APPARATUS FOR ASSISTING INVALIDS THIS INVENTION relates to apparatus for assisting invalids. It relates in particular to a device which will enable invalids who have some disability in their lower limbs to stand.
According to the invention, there is provided apparatus comprising a raisable seat member adapted to support the seat of a user and a knee support adapted to engage at or about knee height with the legs of a user.
If desired, the seat member may be raisable by cantilever arms pivotally mounted about a substantially horizontal axis on a framework. The framework may comprise an upwardly extending post or posts and a rearwardly extending chassis portion. The arms may conveniently be mounted on the post or posts and extend rearwardly therefrom.
The arms may be provided with means operable by the user himself for raising or lowering them about their pivotal axis. Each means may include a plunger and cylinder assembly for each arm, and hydraulic pump means, operable by the user. The hydraulic pump means may include a cam and follower arrangement, the cam being driven by means of a chain from a crank operable by the user. Conveniently the crank may be mounted on one of the cantilever arms. The arms may include support pads adapted to engage with the armpits of a user. Means may be provided for keeping these pads substantially horizontal on raising or lowering the cantilever arms. Lowering of the cantilever arms may be effected by the user reversing the direction of cranking or otherwise releasing the pressure in the hydraulic pump.
Furthermore, if desired, the knee support may be movable so that it can move towards the legs of the patient, e.g. when the seat member is being'raised. Conveniently, the knee support will be movable in arcuate fashion, through a vertical plane containing the pivotal axis of the arms. The knee support may be operatively displaced towards the knees of the user by one of the cantilever arms as said arm raises, the knee support preferably being pivotally suspended from an axis coaxial with the pivotal axis and having an arm engaging with the cantilever arm.
As mentioned above, the framework may comprise an upwardly extending post or posts and a rearwardly extending chassis portion. It may be supported on wheels to make it mobile. Preferably a pair of posts is provided, joined together and spaced apart by a footplate and by a crossbar to define a rectangular main frame. The cantilever arms may be pivoted about the crossbar. The spacing apart of the posts is preferably greater than the distance between an intended users armpits. The chassis portion of the framework preferably is in the form of a pair of rearwardly extending limbs and each attached at one end of an upwardly extending post. Thus, when viewed in plan view, the framework preferably is in the form of a U- shaped bracket with the post(s) at the crossmember between the arms of the U. A wheel may be provided at each comer of the framework. The posts may be provided with forwardly extending stabilizing arms to prevent the apparatus from toppling forward, which may have a leading wheel thereon. The stabilizing arms may be arranged so that they are retractable from a position at or near ground level to a position lying substantially parallel to the posts.
The pair of rearwardly extending limbs preferably are pivoted about the posts so that they may be arranged in parallel, converging or diverging relationship. Latching means may be provided to enable each limb to be latched in one or more positions, or unlatched, preferably independently of the other limb. The latching means may comprise at least one lug and dog combination between each limb and the main frame. For example, lugs can protrude from different positions on the insides of the limbs and can cooperate with dogs on the posts. A pair of levers may be cooperable with the dogs and terminate in handles positioned conveniently for the user to operate.
If desired, the machine may be provided with means whereby the wheels may be driven, conveniently from crank handles. If desired, a suitable clutch arrangement may be provided between the drive for the wheels, and the pump means for pumping hydraulic fluid into the hydraulic plunger and cylinder assemblies.
The invention will now be described by way of example with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 shows an oblique three-dimensional rear view of an apparatus in accordance with the invention, with parts broken away;
FIG. 2 shows an oblique three-dimensional front view of another apparatus in accordance with the invention; and
FIG. 3 shows an oblique front view, from the other side of the apparatus of FIG. 2, with the arms in the fully raised position.
In FIGS. 2 and 3, a user for the apparatus has been sketched in to illustrate more clearly the leverage between the seat member and knee support.
In these figures, an apparatus is shown having cantilever arms 10, 10.1. Attached to one end of each of the cantilever arms are support pads 12, 12.1 suitably shaped to engage under the armpits of the user. The cantilever arms 10, 10.1 are pivotably mounted about a horizontal axis on posts 14, 14.1 and are interconnected by means of crossbar 16.
The posts 14, 14.1 are mounted on a footplate 18 (which may be adjustable in elevation) and supported on driving wheels 20, 20.1. Swingably mounted about pins 22, 22.1 are rearwardly extending limbs 24, 24.1, which are supported at their distal ends on casters 26, 26.1.
Raising and lowering of the cantilever arms 10, 10.1, as indicated by arrow A, is effected by means of plunger and cylinder assemblies 28, 28.1, which are actuated by means of a pump assembly 30, supplying fluid under pressure via suitable piping 31 (see FIGS. 2 and 3, the piping being omitted in FIG. 1 for simplification).
The pump 30 is operated by means of a sprocket and chain drive, from crank handles 32, 32.1, sprockets 34, 34.1, chains 36, 36.1, sprockets 38, 38.1, cam 40 and pump plunger actuating arm 42.
Provision is also made for driving the wheels 20, 20.1 by means of the crank handles 32, 32.1, via sprockets 34, 34.1, chains 36, 36.1, sprockets 38, 38.1, sprockets 44, 44.1 and driving chains 46, 46.1. A suitable clutch mechanism is provided between sprockets 38 and 44, and 38.1 and 44.1. The clutch may be of the dog clutch type.
The support pads 12, 12.1 on the cantilever arms 10, 10.1 are so arranged so as to pivot so that they remain substantially horizontal under control of control rods 46, 46.1 when the cantilever arms 10, 10.1 are raised and lowered.
In FIG. 1 two half seats 48, 48.1 depend from the cantilever arms 10, 10.1. Each half seat is attaChed to a height-adjusting mechanism comprising pawl 50, 50.1, cylinder 52, 52.1 and cylindrical rack 54, 54.1. If desired, a full seat may be provided instead of the two half seats (and this embodiment will be described later with reference to FIGS. 2 and 3). The rack 54, 54.1 is pivotably mounted about a pin 55, 55.1 in cantilever arms 10, 10.1 so that the racks 54, 54.] can remain substantially vertical when the cantilever arms 10, 10.1 are raised and lowered. The half seats are arranged so as to swivel in a substantially horizontal plane about the racks 54, 54.1.
The rearwardly extending limbs 24, 24.1 are arranged so that they may be latched in alternative lateral positions relative to each other so as to afford greater mobility to the device. Mounted on the inside of each limb 24, 24.1, and extending at different angles therefrom, are lugs 56, 56.1, 56.2, 56.3 (only the left-hand ones are visible in FIGS. 1 and 3, and the right-hand ones in FIG. 2). The lugs are adapted to cooperate with dogs 58, 58.1, 58.2, 58.3. The dogs can be moved in and out of engagement with the lugs by means of levers 60, 60.1 extending to within easy reach of the user and terminating in knobs 62, 62.1. Only one lever and knob is shown in FIG. 1 for simplicity.
The apparatus further includes the knee support means generally indicated by reference 64. It comprises a sleeve 66 pivotally mounted about the axis of the crossbar 16. Fast with the sleeve is a depending arm 68 having transverse padded rest 70. The support means includes further an upwardly projecting arm 72 having an adjusting screw 74. This screw 74 is adapted to engage with the cantilever arm 10 when it rises in pivoting about its pivotal axis. This urges the arm 7 2 upwardly in the direction of arrow B and the padded rest 70 rearwardly to press against the legs of a user at or below knee level, thus straightening his legs (bearing in mind that the users seat will be supported on the seat depending from the cantilever arms 10, 10.1). While the user is standing the padded rest will provide support to his legs to prevent them bending.
With reference to FIGS. 2 and 3, the apparatus comprises a wheeled framework having cantilever arms 10, 10.1 pivotally mounted on posts 14, 14.1. Rearwardly extending limbs 24, 24.1 are pivoted about the posts 14, 14.1. The posts are supported on wheels 20, 20.1, and the limbs on casters 26, 26.1.
Extending forwardly of the posts are a pair of stabilizing arms 76, 76.1 terminating in a wheel bracket 78 from which a rotatable caster wheel 80 depends. In an alternative embodiment (not shown) the stabilizing arms are retractable from the position shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 to a position substantially parallel to the posts 14, 14.1.
A knee support comprising depending arm 68 and padded rest 70 is mounted about sleeve 66. In FIGS. 2 and 3 the seat member is provided by a swing-type seat 82 suspended from the cantilever arms 10, 10.1 by chains 84, 84.1. To make temporary removal of one or both sides of the seat easy, the pins 55, 55.1 of FIG. 1 are replaced by hooks 86, 86.1. A further pair of removable chains 88, 88.1 incorporating hooks at their ends link the front comers of the seat with eyelets 90, 90.1 on the posts 14, 14.1. 1
When the apparatus contains a seated person (e.g. as in FIG. 2) the wheels 20, 20.1 and casters 26, 26.1 rest on the ground, and caster 80 is off the ground. In FIG. 2, the cantilever arms are about midway between their lowest and highest positions and padded rest 70 does not press against the users legs. The users weight pulls the chains 84, 84.1 taut, while chains 88, 88.1 hang loosely.
When the user wants to stand, he operates crank handles 32, 32.1 causing the cantilever arms to lift him under his armpits and the padded rest to press against or below his knees. As the seat 82 is lifted, the chains 88, 88.1 also become taut to prevent the seat from slipping too far in an upwardly direction. Caster 80 can rest on the ground to prevent the apparatus from toppling over.
In the embodiment shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, levers 60, 60.1 and knobs 62, 62.1 are modified, compared with the embodiment of FIG. 1, in that they terminate on the posts 14, 14.1, but still within reach of the user. By operating one of these levers (e.g. 62.1) a lug 56.2 can be freed from engagement with a dog 58.2, so that the position of limb 24.1 can be adjusted.
Also, in the embodiment shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, a portion 92 of footplate 18 can be raised or lowered by suitable means (e.g. adjusting screws 94, 94.1) to suit the height of the user.
It is an advantage of this invention that invalids who still have the use of the upper parts of their bodies, may now be placed in a position to take care of themselves. In particular they should be able to help themselves regarding their toilet, and they will also be able to raise themselves into a standing position. They will be able to perform manual work while standing in the apparatus at a bench or counter or such similar position. The apparatus can be wheeled to a bed, or chair, the arms of the chassis projecting underneath the bed or chair (or on either side of the chair). The cantilever arms then project over the bed or chair. The patient or invalid can then lift himself out of the bed or chair by operating the cantilever arms and he can then push himself along by wheeling the carriage if he has some use of his legs, or can then be wheeled wherever he wants to go. He can lower himself onto a chair or a wheelchair, and he can even help himself with his own toilet.
1. An apparatus for assisting a user thereof to stand, which comprises a pair of spaced-apart upwardly extending posts, a footplate fast with said posts near their lower ends, a crossbar between said posts towards their upper ends, a rearwardly extending stabilizing limb mounted near the foot of each post, a rearwardly extending cantilever arm pivotally mounted at about the same height on each post about a substantially horizontal axis, a seat suspended from said cantilever arms and adapted to engage the seat of the user, means adapted to be operable by the user for raising the cantilever arms and thereby raising said seat, forwardly extending stabilizing arms situated on the upwardly extending posts, and a knee support pivoted about said crossbar and adapted to engage at about knee height with the user on raising the cantilever arms.
2. An apparatus for assisting a user thereof to stand, which comprises an upwardly extending framework incorporating a raisable seat member adapted to engage the seat of the user, means for raising said seat member, and a knee support adapted to be moveable towards the legs of the user to engage them at about knee height on causing the seat to be raised.
3. An apparatus for assisting a user thereof to stand, which comprises an upwardly extending framework, a pair of raisable cantilever arms pivotally mounted about a substantially horizontal axis on said framework, a seat member supported from and raisable with said cantilever arms, said seat member being adapted to engage the seat of the user, a pivotally mounted support pad at the distal end of each cantilever arm, said support pads being adapted to engage under the arms of the user, and means for keeping the support pads substantially horizontal on raising and lowering the cantilever arms.
4. An apparatus according to claim 3, wherein the cantilever arms are provided with means adapted to be operable by the user, for raising said cantilever arms about their pivotal ans.
5. An apparatus according to claim 4, wherein the means for raising the cantilever arms includes a plunger and cylinder assembly for each arm, and hydraulic pump means incorporating a cam and follower arrangement in which the cam is drivable by means of a chain from a crank mounted on a cantilever arm.
6. An apparatus for assisting a user thereof to stand, which comprises at least one upwardly extending post, a pair of rearwardly extending stabilizing limbs mounted near the foot of said posts, a pair of spaced-apart rearwardly extending cantilever arms pivotally mounted about a substantially horizontal axis on said posts, a seat member supported by said arms and adapted to engage the seat of the user, means for raising the cantilever arms and thereby raising the seat member, and a knee support pivotally suspended from an axis coaxial with the pivotal axis of the cantilever arms, said knee support having a protruding arm adapted to engage with one of said cantilever arms on raising the cantilever arms thereby causing the knee support to engage atabout knee height with the user.