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Publication numberUS3674027 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 4, 1972
Filing dateAug 6, 1969
Priority dateAug 6, 1969
Publication numberUS 3674027 A, US 3674027A, US-A-3674027, US3674027 A, US3674027A
InventorsRaul Fleischmajer
Original AssigneeRaul Fleischmajer
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Disposable wet compresses
US 3674027 A
Abstract
A disposable dermatological compress for the application of aqueous solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling includes a body of water-permeable material constructed as a multi-layer device. An inner layer of smooth sheeting is directly applied to the skin. An intermediate layer of water-absorbing material functions as a reservoir to retain a large quantity of solution. An outer evaporation layer receives the solutions from the reservoir for evaporation. The evaporation layer has a surface area which is several times larger than the area defined by the outer boundaries of the unit to serve as an efficient evaporator.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Fleischmajer 1451 July 4,1972

[54] DISPOSABLE WET COMPRESSES [72] Inventor: Raul Fleischmajer, 121 Broome Lane,

Merion',.Pa. 19066 [22] Filed: Aug. 6, 1969 [21] App]. No.: 849,293

[52] U.S.Cl

51 1111.0. ..A61I7/l0 [58] FieldofSearch ..l28/155,l56,296,268,68.1,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,122,140 2/1964 Crowe "128/156 2,785,677 3/1957 Stumpf "128/156 2,715,315 8/1955 Giardini.... ..128/38l UX 2,379,657 7/1945' Ryberg 128/268 2,911,973 11/1959 Chieffo ..128/265 3,399,672 9/1968 Crowe et al.. .....l28/268 3,468,311 9/1969 Gallagher ..128/296 3,457,919 7/1969 Harbard ..l28/156 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 776,408 6/1957 Great Britain... .....l28/l56 1,030,013 3/1953 France ..128/156 827,861 2/1938 France ..128/l56 Primary Examiner-Robert W. Michell Auo rmzy Morton C. Jacobs 571 ABSTRACT A disposable dermatological compress for the application of aqueous solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling includes a body of water-penneable material constructed as a multi-layer device. An inner layer of smooth sheeting is directly applied to the skin. An intermediate layer of water-absorbing material functions as a reservoir to retain a large quantity of solution. An outer evaporation layer receives the solutions from the reservoir for evaporation. The evaporation layer has a surface area which is several times larger than the area defined by the outer boundaries of the unit to serve as an efficient evaporator.

7 Claims, 1 Drawing Figure PATENTEDJUL 4 m2 INVENTOR.

RAUL FLEESCHMAJEB BY 5 ATTORNEY 1 DISPOSABLE WET COMPRESSES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION compresses Another object is to provide a disposable open wet comi press which is eflective for evaporative cooling.

Wet compresses or dressings, it is generally agreed,

represent one of the most effective modalities for the treatment of skin disorders. See, for example, Dermatology, Diagnosis and Treatment," by Sulzberger, M. B., Wolf, F., and Witten, V. B., published by The Year Book Pub., Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1961, pp. 44-46; and Dermatology, by Pillsbury, D. M., Shelley, W. B., and Kligman, A. M., published by W. B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia, Pa., 1957, p. 315. The latter states: In the presence of erythematous crusted exudative lesions, wet dressings may be the only form of treatment which is tolerated. It is often the most soothing of all the topical measures."

Another object is to provide a disposable wet compress which provides a large storage of liquid solutions.

Another object is to provide a disposable wet compress which is effective to absorb exudates from the skin.

Another object is to provide a disposable wet compress which may be constructed in various sizes and shapes and which would enable standardization of medical procedures.

In accordance with one embodiment of the invention, a disposable dermatological wet compress is constructed as a multi-layer device. An inner layer of porous, smooth sheeting is directly applied to the skin; it passes solutions and exudates The following properties of wet compresses have been recognized: They are the most effective cleansing agents for the removal of debris, adherent crusts, serum, etc., and they promote draining of abscesses, infected ulcers, and infected wounds. Their wetting properties induce maceration and thus have an effective keratolytic action. They are vehicles for local application of heat or cold, and they are eflective anti-inflammatory agents, through the cooling efiect achieved by allowing continuous evaporation of water. They prevent rapid changes of temperature at the skin surface, which may have beneficial anti-pruritic and analgesic effects. They promote epithelization by providing a moist environment. They have a drying effect which can be further enhanced by the addition of certain compounds (sulphur, aluminum sub-acetate, etc.). They open and dry blisters, and they protect the skin against noxious physical and chemical environmental agents. I

Wet dressings are widely used by dermatologists. There are two methods of application: (l) open wet dressings and (2) closed wet dressings. The open wet dressings have the advantage of allowing free evaporation which results in a cooling effect; for this reason, it is generally agreed, open wet dressings are the treatment of choice for acute dermatoses. On the other hand, closed wet dressings promote more'maceration, buthave less cooling effect. I-Iot closed dressings are frequently used by surgeons to drain abscesses and infected wounds.

Despite the widespread use of wet dressings by dermatologists and surgeons, there has been no substantial improvement in their construction or in the methods of application. Moreover, the use of wet dressings has never been standardized, so that the mode of application is left to the ingenuity and improvisation of the physician, nurse or patient. At present no such dressings are commercially available for the specific use as compresses. A review of treatment chapters of several dennatologic textbooks discloses the following items as being proper for use as wet dressings: unstarched sheeting, napkin, pillow case, white shirting or turkish towels. Most authors suggest using a generous number of cloth sheets although none have specifically determined what should be the ideal thickness of the dressing. The use of household materials could be expensive and may carry with them dirt and gems, since very few patients will attempt to boil these cloths. Furthermore, subsequent utilization of these materials by the patient or relative may be a source of dissemination of infection. With open dressings (see Pillsbury et al book, cited above) frequent changes of a dressing are necessary due to rapid drying, which tends to complicate the problems.

A disposable wet dressing, scientifically designed, would be a useful addition to the therapeutic armamentarium available to the physician, would provide a reliable and simple device for the patient, and would be helpful in hospitals due to the time-labor saving factor and economy.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION is disposable.

respectively to and from the skin, and with materials like rayon or apertured polyethylene it does not tend to adhere thereto. An intermediate layer of water absorbing material that absorbs and retains as a reservoir a large quantity of aqueous solution is assembled between the inner layer and an .outer layer. The latter is an evaporation layer and is adjacent the reservoir layer to receive solutions therefrom for evaporation. These layers have corresponding shapes and dimensions so that they are assembled together in a unitary construction with the reservoir layer passing skin exudates to the outer layer for absorption. The outer layer has an evaporation surface area substantially greater than the surface area in contact with the skin so that efficient cooling of the covered skin is achieved.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The foregoing and other objects of this invention, the various features thereof, as well as the invention itself, may be more fully understood from the following description when read together with the accompanying drawing.

The drawing is a view in perspective, partly in section, of a multi-layer wet compress embodyingthis invention.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED AND OTHER EMBODIMENTS The wet-compress embodiment illustrated in the drawing includes a three-layer unit 10 constructed in a unitary assembly. The center layer 12 serves as a reservoir of water or of various aqueous solutions, which are passed to the lower and upper layers 14 and 16, respectively. The lower layer 14 is applied directly to the skin and should have a non-adherent inner surface 18 and also should resist tearing or shedding. The

upper layer 16 is constructed with a large surface area for efficient and rapid evaporation of the water received from the reservoir so as to cool the compress and the covered skin. A textured outer surface 20 provides an evaporation area that is very much greater than the area of the inner surface 18 in contact with the skin.

Various inexpensive materials are available for constructing the illustrated compress. The lower layer 14 may be made of an apertured sheet of polyethylene, which presents a smooth inner surface 18 that would not adhere to or irritate the skin or ulcerated areas thereof. The apertures are effective to pass the aqueous solution to the skin and pus and other exudates from the skin to the intermediate layer 12. Any other permeable non-adherent material may be used for this layer, including a non-woven polypropylene with a microscopic porosity, a

highly absorbent rayon, and cellulose such as that used in facial tissues. This layer may be quite thin, for example, about 60 to microns.

The reservoir layer may be made of an open cell foam material such as polyurethane, rubber or the like; non-woven cellulose or a cellulose acetate batting may also be used. This layer is the thickest one (e. g., 0.2 to 2 millimeters), and serves to add strength to the overall unit so that it resists tearing; it is sufiiciently flexible, especially when wet, to permit the unit to conform to the limb or body portion to which it is applied. As the evaporation of water occurs, there tends to be a drawing or attraction of pus from the skin; the open or continuous cellular character of the reservoir material enables this action and also transmits the exudates to the upper layer 16 where they may lodge and be absorbed.

The upper layer 16 may be fabricated of highly absorbent cellulose fiber such as paper, and may also be quite thin (e. g., 60-100 microns). This layer is constructed so that the outer layer 20 has a surface evaporation area which is preferably several (e. g. 3 to 5) times larger than the surface area of the compress applied to the skin; for a flat compress, that area is the planar area defined by the outer boundaries of the unit. For curved skin surfaces, the evaporation surface is also preferably larger. Corrugated paper is a suitable textured material for developing a large evaporation surface; other such textures in the form of domes or cubical shapes arranged in various regular or irregular patterns may be employed. Each segment of the permeable layer 20 is larger in area than the counterpart segment of the reservoir and functions efficiently as an evaporator. The paper is also effective as an absorber of exudates transmitted from the skin.

Though rather thin, a polyurethane foam in reservoir layer 12 is effective to store a large quantity of water, very much greater than a thick (or thin) mass of cotton cloth such as shirting fabric. For example, a rectangular mass of foam measuring about 3.7 by 6.0 centimeters and 0.2 mm. thick has a water capacity of more than three-fourths of a milliliter, which is three times (and more) the capacity of a similar rectangular mass of thick (and thin) cotton cloth. Where the foam is covered with relatively untextured paper, the rate of evaporation, and thus of cooling, is about the same as from the cloth. With a textured outer surface, the cooling is more rapid and effective. The compress of this invention stays wet over a single application for a much longer period (twice as long or longer over a period of hours), which is most desirable to avoid disturbing the affected skin area. A dermatological compress having a thicker reservoir will store a larger quantity of water, so that hours of effective cooling by evaporation can be provided with a single convenient application.

This disposable compress may be pre-soaked with various aqueous (or alcoholic) solutions that are suitable for dermatological purposes. The wet compresses may be hermetically packaged in vapor-tight containers such as aluminum or cellophane bags, so that they may be stored in hospital or home, or carried in a purse or pocket, and be immediately available under various conditions and in accurately measured astringent or antiseptic aqueous (or alcohol) solutions, such as the following:

a. 0.9 percent sodium chloride, with or without the following individual or combined antibiotics: Polymyxin B sulfate 5000 u/ml Hexachlorophene (alcohol solution) Bacitracin USP 400 u/ml Neomycin Sulfate USP 5 mg/ml b. Aluminum acetate solution (USPXV) 1:15 to 1:30

c. Aluminum subacetate (USPXV) 1:20 to 1:40

d. Boric acid, 2-3 percent e. Vleminckx solution (liquor calcis sulfuratae) according to NEX f. Urea 20 percent g. Proteolytic enzymes for debridement (trypsin, pronase). With distilled or deionized water used in the preparation of all solutions, the precipitation of salts present in tap water is avoided.

Dry disposable compresses can be dispensed to patients with an additional cellophane envelope containing the active medication and with instructions as to the volume of water necessary to dissolve the active ingredients in order to obtain the proper concentration. The envelope itself (or other container) may have measure markings to indicate the amount of water to achieve the right concentration of the solution. The reservoir layer 12 can be impregnated with active medications in a powder state such as potassium permanganate, aluminum acetate or subacetate. Since the water retaining capacity of the dressing materials (particularly that of the reservoir) is known, the amount of active medications that are used is such as to obtain a substantially accurate concentration (0.05 to 0.02 percent for aluminum acetate; 1:8.000 for potassium permanganate). For example, a dermatologic compress of suitable size (e. g. 20 X 20 cm, with a reservoir layer having a surface area of 400 cm and a thickness of about 0.2 mm.) retains 15 ml of water and requires 3 mg of aluminum acetate to obtain a concentration of 0.02 percent. To increase the water retention of the reservoir, glycerin may be added.

The unit is constructed in rectangular shapes of any suitable size for application to various portions of the body. Long strips of dressing may be packaged in rolls and any size may be cut off as desired. The dressing may also be fabricated in tubular, stocking or glove, cap or mask and other irregular shapes for application to particular portions of the body. Any suitable interconnection or bonding of the layers may be used that maintains the aforementioned permeable communication between layers for water and exudates. The edges of the unit may be secured together by placing them in registry and crimping or heat sealing, or by forming the upper and lower layers somewhat larger and sealing them to enclose the reservoir. The edges may be enlarged where desirable for attachment to the body. The corrugated paper may extend around the sides of the reservoir layer or those sides may be sealed to prevent passage of water therethrough.

Thus, this invention provides an instrument for standardizing dermatological dressings and procedures. Numerous variables tend to be introduced in present-day treatments due to improvisations by the physician, nurse or patient as a result of variations in the thickness and type of compress materials that are used and their absorbent properties and cleanliness. The present invention avoids these variations and improvisations by providing a dressing that is light in weight, compact in size and resistant to shedding and tearing, and that is reliable and simple to use and lends itself to standardization. This wet compress can be packaged with a combined astringent and antibiotic solution (e. g. from those set forth above) and thereby a compress of widespread potential utilization is made available.

The materials and quantities thereof that are employed in the compress are such that the fabricated compress is relatively inexpensive and amenable to mass production techniques. Thus the unit can be fabricated in quantity and at low cost so that it can be used for but one application and thereafter disposed of. The compress may be heated by placing a sealed bag containing it in hot water, or in boiling water with allowance for cooling to obtain the desired temperature. The unit may be fabricated in a wide variety of shapes and sizes of surface area for application to different parts of the body. Generally, the unit will be lighter in weight than similar size dressings made of cotton fabric, and at the same time will be effective to retain more water and remain wet for a longer period of time, which will tend to prolong the therapeutic effects and avoid unnecessary re-immersions in aqueous solutions. These dressings will be clean and may be made sterile, thus preventing the transfer of dirt or bacteria, as may occur from the use of improvised vehicles such as shirts, napkins and the like. When treating an infected area, disposable dressings can be changed with each application, thus avoiding reinfections. The total operation is made simple and can be carried out by the patient without the help of a relative or a properly trained nurse. The availability of disposable, pre-soaked dressings will represent an important time-saving device for hospital nurses and the patient.

A closed wet dressing can be formed by providing an impermeable outer layer for the dressing. This impermeable layer prevents evaporation. An impermeable membrane such as polyethylene can be added to the above described open dressing, or the dressing itself can be fabricated with an impermeable membrane in place of the outer evaporative layer 20. With such a closed dressing, a substantial simplification is achieved in that a five-step present-day process is replaced by the single step of applying a pre-soaked disposable closed dressing to the area in question. The present-day technique requires the steps of (a) preparation of the solution, (b) wetting of the dressing, (c) application of the dressing around the afiected area, (d) application of an impermeable dressing to avoid evaporation, and (e) application of a gauze bandage to hold the wet dressing and impermeable sheet. The closed dressing may also be used as a dry dressing for certain dermatological therapy, in which case the intermediate reservoir serves to collect secretions absorbed through the lower layer.

The three-layer device illustrated in the drawing may be modified in various ways. Other materials than those described above may be employed. Also, additional layers may be utilized. For example, one or more layers of absorbent paper may be provided between the lower layer 14 and the reservoir layer 12. Such paper may be desirable for absorbing serum or pus.

Thus a new and improved dermatological compress is provided. It is disposable and as a wet compress is effective for evaporative cooling. A reservoir is provided which serves to store a large quantity of liquid solutions. The compress is effective to absorb exudates from the skin. The construction is such that it can be formed in various sizes and shapes, enabling standardization of medical techniques.

What is claimed is:

1. A disposable dermatological compress for the application of water or aqueous or alcoholic solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling comprising:

a body of water permeable material having a portion forming an outer smooth surface for application to the skin without adhering thereto,

another portion formed of absorbent material and having an outer evaporation surface,

and an intermediate reservoir portion in communication with the other portions over substantially the entire surfaces thereof and of material capable of absorbing and retaining a large quantity of aqueous or alcoholic solution,

said evaporation surface having at least one projecting surface for evaporation and of area substantially greater than the area of said outer smooth surface, so that efficient cooling of the covered skin area'is achieved.

2. A disposable dermatological compress as recited in claim 1 wherein:

said smooth surface portion includes a layer of porous sheeting; and said evaporation surface portion includes a layer of porous material having a textured surface for evaporation.

3. A disposable dermatological compress as recited in claim 2 wherein said reservoirmaterial passes exudates from the skin to said evaporation surface layer for absorption thereby.

4. A disposable dermatological compress as recited in claim 3 wherein said layers have generally similar shapes and dimensions of the peripheral boundaries thereof and are assembled together in a unitary construction.

5. A composite package comprising:

a container of non-absorptive impermeable material; and

packaged therein a disposable dennatolo'gical compress for the application of water and aqueous solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling; said compress including:

a body of water permeable material having a portion forming an outer smooth surface for application to the skin without adhering thereto,

another portion forming an outer evaporation surface, and an intermediate reservoir portion in communication with the other portions over substantially the entire surfaces thereof and of material capable of absorbing and retaining a large quantity of aqueous solution,

said evaporation surface portion being formed of material of sufficient absorbency so that aqueous solution would tend to flow to said evaporation portion from said reservoir portion and having at least one projection to provide an area for evaporation substantially greater than the area of said smooth surface so that eflicient cooling of the covered skin area is achieved,

, andan asm'ngent dermatological solution retained in said reservoir rtion. 6. A disposa le dermatological compress for the application of water or aqueous or alcoholic solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling comprising:

a body of water permeable material having a portion forming an outer smooth surface for application to the skin without adhering thereto,

another portion forming an outer evaporation surface, and an intermediate reservoir portion in communication with the other portions over substantially the entire surfaces thereof and of material capable of absorbing and retaining a large quantity of aqueous or alcoholic solution,

said evaporation surface portion being formed of material of sufficient absorbency so that said solution would tend to flow to said evaporation portion from said reservoir portion and having projections to provide an area for evaporation substantially greater than the area of said outer smooth surface, so that efiicient cooling of the covered skin area is achieved.

7. A disposable dermatological compress for the application of water or aqueous or alcoholic solutions to the skin to achieve evaporative cooling as recited in claim 6, wherein said reservoir portion is impregnated with an active medication in powdered state for producing an astringent dermatological solution.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2379657 *Aug 22, 1942Jul 3, 1945Ryco Lab IncPackage
US2715315 *Jun 11, 1954Aug 16, 1955Giardini Gino ALocalized applicator for cooling body temperatures
US2785677 *May 4, 1953Mar 19, 1957Lawrence R StumpfArched protective adhesive bandage
US2911973 *Jun 20, 1955Nov 10, 1959Chieffo Rocco LInnersole
US3122140 *Mar 29, 1962Feb 25, 1964Johnson & JohnsonFlexible absorbent sheet
US3399672 *Feb 8, 1966Sep 3, 1968Johnson & JohnsonDressing
US3457919 *Jun 22, 1966Jul 29, 1969Smith & NephewAdhesive surgical and other tapes,plasters,bandages,dressings,and the like
US3468311 *Jun 7, 1967Sep 23, 1969John P GallagherAbsorbent pad
FR827861A * Title not available
FR1030013A * Title not available
GB776408A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4668564 *Jan 31, 1986May 26, 1987Spenco Medical CorporationPolyurethanes
US4898592 *Sep 16, 1988Feb 6, 1990Latzke Arno WMeans for the application of transdermally absorbable active substances
US4994049 *Nov 15, 1989Feb 19, 1991Latzke Arno WApplication of transdermally active oil; absorptive carrier on laminate support
US5135518 *Aug 28, 1990Aug 4, 1992Barbara VeraHeat-retentive wet compress
US5147338 *Jun 17, 1991Sep 15, 1992Smith And Nephew Associated Companies LimitedWound facing layer, an intermediate absorbent layer and an outer layer
US5356372 *Dec 1, 1993Oct 18, 1994Ludlow CorporationOcclusive pressure-reducing wound dressing
US5486158 *Jun 23, 1992Jan 23, 1996Coloplast A/SGrooved hydrocolloidal dressing
US6464672 *Oct 26, 1999Oct 15, 2002Theresa M. BuckleyMultilayer composite material and method for evaporative cooling
US6855410Nov 20, 2001Feb 15, 2005Theresa M. BuckleyPhase change material thermal capacitor clothing
EP0194446A1 *Oct 17, 1983Sep 17, 1986Junkosha Co. Ltd.A cooler for human tissue for use during hyperthermia treatment against cancer
EP0691111A2 *Jun 30, 1995Jan 10, 1996Alan Keith TaylorA thermal compress
EP0885601A2 *Jun 12, 1998Dec 23, 1998Jörg BenneckeCooling element
Classifications
U.S. Classification604/304
International ClassificationA61F7/10, A61F7/02, A61F7/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61F2007/0001, A61F7/10, A61F2007/0065, A61F2007/026
European ClassificationA61F7/10