US 3664328 A
A cervical cancer test specimen gathering device for use in the home. The device includes an insertion tube and a sampling balloon normally collapsed within one end of the tube. A manually collapsible, self-restoring bulb is connected to the other end of the tube. A layer of specimen gathering material is mounted on the balloon for movement by the balloon from the interior of the tube to an exterior sampling position and back whenever the bulb is collapsed and released.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Moyle, Jr. et a1.
 CANCER TEST SPECIIVIEN GATHERING DEVICE  Inventors: Henry Dinwoodey Moyle, Jr., 5600 Holladay Blvd, Salt Lake City, Utah 84121; William Bates, 4700 Idlewild Circle, Salt Lake City, Utah 84117  Filed: Apr. 28, 1971  Appl. No.: 138,323
Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Ser. No. 810,299, Man, 1969, abandoned.
 US. Cl ..l28/2 B, 128/344  Int. Cl. ..A6lb l0/00  Field of Search ..l28/2 R, 2 B, 2 W, 246, 344; 46/87, 90
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 348,843 9/1886 Hamilton ..128/5 2,701,559 2/1955 Cooper.... ...128/344X 2,919,697 1/1960 Kim 51 May 23,1972
3,037,495 6/1962 Naz 128/2 3,087,493 4/1963 Schossow ...l28/344 X 3,168,092 2/1965 S1lverman ...128/344 X 3,417,746 12/1968 Moore et al ,.128/6 3,433,214 3/1969 S1lverman ..128/2 3,502,069 3/ 1970 S1lverman ..128/2 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 392,619 10/1908 France ..l28/246 215,350 2/1908 Germany ..l28/2 Primary Examinerl(yle L. Howell AttameyRichards, Harris & Hubbard ABSTRACT A cervical cancer test specimen gathering device for use in the home. The device includes an insertion tube and a sampling balloon normally collapsed within one end of the tube. A manually collapsible, self-restoring bulb is connected to the other end of the tube. A layer of specimen gathering material is mounted on the balloon for movement by the balloon from the interior of the tube to an exterior sampling position and back whenever the bulb is collapsed and released.
1 Claim, 3 Drawing Figures ?ATENTEUMAY 2 3 I972 INVENTORS WILLIAM BATES HENRY D. MOYLE, JR.
ATTORNEYS CANCER TEST SPECIMEN GATHERING DEVICE This is a continuation of application Ser. No. 810,299, filed Mar. 25, 1969, now abandoned.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It is well known that women tend to develop cervical cancer. Because of this tendency, it is highly desirable that women be periodically tested for symptoms of such cancer. Heretofore, many women have neglected to have cervical cancer tests performed because of long distances separating them from the nearest doctors office and because of the expense involved in traveling to a doctors office, having an examination performed, etc. This invention relates to a device which permits the taking of cervical cancer test specimens in the home for subsequent mailing to a doctor. By use of the invention the need of traveling to a doctors office to have a cervical cancer test performed is eliminated.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In the preferred embodiment, this invention comprises a normally collapsed flexible cancer specimen gathering member that is positioned in its collapsed state, expanded to collect a sample, and collapsed for removal. Preferably, the
. gathering member is normally positioned within a tube which extends to a bulb. The bulb is squeezed to expand the sampling member out of the tube to a sampling positions and is released to withdraw the sampling member into the tube for removal.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING A more complete understanding of the invention may be had by referring to the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the drawing, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a cancer test specimen gathering device employing the invention in which certain- DETAILED DESCRIPTION Referring now to the drawing, like reference numerals designate like parts throughout the several views. Referring particularly to FIG. 1, there is shown a cervical cancer test specimen gathering device employing the present invention. The gathering device 10 includes a flexible sampling balloon 12 having a coating of fibrous, flocculent material 14 extending over its exterior surface. The sampling balloon 12 is normally collapsed into the interior of an insertion tube 16.
The insertion tube 16 is preferably at least semi-rigid in construction. The tube 16 is provided with a pair of reference rings 18 and 20 which extend around the exterior of the tube 16 and which preferably are of different colors, such as red and blue.
A manually collapsible, self-restoring bulb 22 is connected to the end of the tube 16 opposite the sampling balloon 12. The tube 16 forms an air-tight connection between the bulb 22 and the balloon 12 so that when the bulb 22 is squeezed, the balloon is forced out of the opposite end of the tube 16. Preferably, the balloon 12, the tube 16 and the bulb 22 are all formed from an inexpensive, sterilizable material, such as plastic.
In use, the cervical cancer test specimen gathering device 10 is initially sterilized and is supplied to a woman to be tested in a sealed container (not shown). When a cervical cancer test specimen is to be taken, the device 10 is removed from its container and the tube 16 of the device 10 is inserted into the vaginal canal until the reference ring 18 on the tube 16 is reached. The tube 16 is then withdrawn to the point indicated by the reference ring 20.
When the tube 16 is properly positioned, the bulb 18 is squeezed. This drives the sampling balloon 12 out of the end of the tube 16 which in turn moves the layer of material 14 from the interior of the tube 16 to the exterior thereof. As is shown in FIG. 2, the use of the reference rings 18 and 20 on the tube 16 assures the proper positioning of the layer of material 14 on the expanded balloon 12 at the end of the vaginal canal 24 adjacent the cervix 26.
When the sampling balloon 12 is in the sampling position, the device 10 is rotated. This causes the layer of material 14 to contact and work the walls of the vaginal canal 24 adjacent the cervix 26. The layer of material 14 is both absorbent and somewhat abrasive so that as the device 10 is rotated, a sample of any material located in the portion of the vaginal canal 24 adjacent the cervix 26 is collected on the layer of material 14 on the expanded sampling balloon 12.
When the taking of the sample has been completed, the bulb 18 is released. This withdraws the sampling balloon 12 back into the interior of the tube 16 which in turn moves the layer of material 14 back into the tube 16. The tube 16 is then withdrawn from the vaginal canal.
After withdrawal of the tube 16, the bulb 22 is again squeezed to force the sampling balloon 12 out of the end of the tube 16. The layer 14 on the balloon 12 is then wiped across a conventional laboratory slide 28 in the manner shown in FIG. 3. This deposits the materialcollected on the layer 14 onto the slide 28 which is preferably pre-coated with a specimen preserving material. The slide 28 is then mailed to a doctor in a sterile package (not shown). Both the laboratory slide 28 and the package are initially supplied with the cancer testing device 10. Alternatively, the balloon 12 may be snipped from the tube 16 and inserted into a bottle filled with specimen preserving liquid. In such a case the balloon itself is mailed to the doctor.
While the device 10 may have any suitable dimensions, in the preferred embodiment the tube 16 has a total length of centimeters and has an outside diameter of one-half inch. Preferably, the reference line 20 is positioned 2 centimeters from the bulb 22, the reference line 18 is positioned l centimeter from the line 20, and the end of the tube 16 opposite the bulb 22 is positioned 9 centimeters from the line 18. Such a device is suitable for taking cervical cancer test specimens from virtually any adult woman and functions to introduce the balloon 12 into the vaginal canal, gather a cervical cancer test sample and remove the balloon 12 without contamination of the specimen by materials in the vaginal canal either during insertion or removal.
Although only one embodiment of the device is shown in the drawing and described in the foregoing specification, it will be understood that the invention is not limited to the embodiment disclosed but is capable of rearrangement, modification and substitution of parts and elements without departing from the spirit of the invention.
What is claimed is:
l. The cancer test specimen gathering device comprising:
a substantially rigid, hollow tube having a predetermined diameter;
a sample gathering balloon secured in fluid-tight relation to and normally housed within and protected by one end of the tube and extendable and expandable axially therefrom to a sample gathering position located outside said one end of the tube and into a spherical configuration characterized by a diameter substantially greater than that of the tube and by a predetermined volume; and
a manually collapsible self-restoring bulb having a volume substantially greater than that of the sample gathering balloon and secured in fluid-tight relation to the other end of the tube so that the balloon is automatically expanded to the sample gathering position and into the spherical configuration upon a single collapse of the bulb and is automatically retracted into said one end of the tube whenever the bulb is released.