|Publication number||US3861364 A|
|Publication date||Jan 21, 1975|
|Filing date||Aug 13, 1973|
|Priority date||Oct 6, 1971|
|Publication number||US 3861364 A, US 3861364A, US-A-3861364, US3861364 A, US3861364A|
|Original Assignee||Greenfeld Herman|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (7), Referenced by (9), Classifications (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
O Umted States Patent 1191 1111 3,861,364 Greenfeld 1 Jan. 21, 1975  BODY CIRCULATION AND VAPOR HEAT 935,272 9/1909 Riesland 1213/68.]
TREATMENT DEVICE 1,040,238 10/1912 1,358,060 11/1920 Inventor: Herman Greenfeld, Box 1 1,825,118 9/1931 136g 128/368 Salisbury, Md. 21801 3,107,863 10/1963 Potapenko 128/367 X  Filed: Aug. 13, 1973 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 1 L N 7 363,215 11/1922 Germany 128/368 [2 1 App 0 38 1,272,150 4/1902 France 128/368 Related US. Application Data  Continuation-impart of Ser. No, 187,145, Oct. 6, Primary ExaminerRichard A. Gaudet 1971, abandoned, which is a continuation of Ser. No. A i t Ex iner j Yasko 808,429, March 19, 1969 abandoned Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Clarence A. OBrien;
Harvey B. Jacobson  US. Cl. 128/68.l, 128/368  Int. Cl. A61f 5/00  Field of Search l28/68.1, 68, 367, 368,  ABSTRACT 2 395 9 4 402 9 A body c1rculat1on and vapor heat treatment dev1ce including a housing receiving vapor heat producing 5 References Cied means therein and a flexible panel or skirt attached to UNITED STATES PATENTS the housing to engage the surface area of a persons body for transferring vapor heat thereto. 571,587 11/1896 We1ssenborn 128/368 892,441 7/1908 Metzler 128/368 6 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures I Patented Ja n. 21 1975 3,861,364
2 Shoots-Shoat 1 Patented Jim; 21, 1975 3,861,364
2 Shoots-Shant- 2 F 3 0 40 20 g 52 T BODY CIRCULATION AND VAPOR HEAT TREATMENT DEVICE REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This application is a continuation-in-part of copending application Ser. No. 187,145, filed Oct. 6, 1971 now abandoned, which was a continuation of Ser. No. 808,429, filed Mar. 19, 1969, now abandoned.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention generally relates to a body fluid circulation and heat treating device adapted for use in applying vapor heat to the surface area of a persons body receiving a heat treatment such as the surface of the back and includes a housing having a vapor heat producing assembly therein together with a flexible skirt or panel connected thereto for engaging the surface of the body for restoring circulation of body fluids.
2. Description of the Prior Art The use of heat applied to the surface of the body is a well known therapeutic treatment. The prior patents cited in the applications parent to this application show various prior techniques for applying heat treatment to surface areas of the body with some of the prior pa tented devices employing dry heat, steam heat and the like. While such devices may have some therapeutic benefit, they also introduce certain areas of ineffective function.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention to provide a heat treating device utilizing a vapor heat producing means associated with a housing disposed above the body surface to be treated together with a flexible skirt or panel connected with the housing and depending therefrom for engagement with the surface of the body for applying vapor heat thereto.
Another object of the invention is to provide a vapor heat treating device in which a flexible panel or skirt is suspended from a supporting housing so that it will engage and conform with the surface area of a persons body receiving a heat treatment so that the vapor heat will penetrate substantially below the surface of the skin thereby opening pores and enabling application and utilization of vapor heat transmitted throughout the surface area of the body engaged by the flexible panel or skirt in which the flexible panel or skirt will effectively encompass and engage all of the surface of the body disposed above a supporting surface due to the fullness and flexibility of the skirt or panel.
A further object of the invention is to provide a vapor heat treating-device in which the housing includes heating elements and a moisture supplying means to provide vapor heat that is absorbed by the flexible skirt or panel and transmitted and applied to the surface of the body.
Still another object of the invention is to provide a heat treating device in accordance with'thepreceding objects in which the heat applied to the surface of the body may be adjusted or varied by inserting the hand or hands between the body surface and the flexible fabric panel or skirt.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the heat treating device of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the construction of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 3-3 of FIG. 1 illustrating the structural details of the device.
FIG. 4 is a vertical sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 4-4 of FIG. 3 illustrating further structural details of the invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now specifically to the drawings, the vapor heat treating device of the present invention is generally designated by reference numeral 10 and is adapted to be used by a person reclining on a tabletop or other suitable supporting surface 12 so that the heat treating device may be associated with a persons body 14 that is disposed on the horizontal supporting surface 12 with the back of the body surface being exposed upwardly. The particular construction of the supporting table may be varied as desired with the height of the table being convenient to enable a person to easily gain access thereto and also being cushioned in a desired manner and provided with desired surface characteristics as may be required. The table may be provided with a suitable cushion l6 and a waterproof covering 18 which may or may not be provided with a suitable liner that can be replaced easily so that individuals may have a new liner positioned on the table when they lie down in a position with their back uppermost.
The heat treating device 10 includes a housing 20 supported for vertical adjustment and for horizontal adjustment with the vertical adjustment being by the provision of a pair of vertically adjustable supporting posts 22 telescopically received in vertical sleeves 24 carried by a suitable housing 26 with manually operated lock screws 28 being provided for locking the posts 22 in vertically adjusted position thereby enabling the housing 20 to be oriented in a desired relationship to the body 14.
Horizontal or lateral adjustment of the housing 20 is accomplished by a plurality of horizontally disposed rods or tubes 30 received in sleeves 32 on a frame member 34. The frame member 34 is secured to the upper ends of the posts 22 in a rigid manner and a retainer 36 is provided on the end of the member 30 to prevent movement of the members 30 in one direction and a retainer 38 is provided on the members 30 to secure the members 30 in the sleeve 32. The other ends of the support members 30 slidably receive sleeves 40 rigidly mounted on the upper end of the housing 20. Retainers 42 are provided to limit movement thereof thereby enabling the position of the housing 20 to be adjusted so that it will be oriented in a desired position in relation to the person's body 14.
The housing 20 includes substantially vertical side and end walls 14 with the side walls terminating at their upper edges in inwardly inclined slanted walls 46 and substantially vertical upstanding slanted walls 48 at the inner edges thereof. The walls 48 are provided with vent openings 50 provided with screen closures or the like and the upper edges of the walls 48 are provided with horizontal top walls 52. The top wall 52 is rigidly affixed to the sleeves 40 in any suitable manner thus supporting the housing 20 from the support members 30.
Disposed in the lower portion of the housing 20 is a plurality of heating elements 54 in the form of Calrod elements each of which is provided with and underlying channel-shaped member 56 to serve generally as a shield therefor. The Calrod elements are connected electrically to a suitable source of electrical energy by a junction box arrangement 58 oriented in extensions 60 at each end of the housing 20. The particular electrical connection is conventional and forms no particular part of the invention with the heating elements 54 serving to heat the interior of the housing with the heat passing downwardly from the open bottom end of the housing.
Also disposed in the housing is a longitudinal water pipe 62 having a plurality of nozzles 64 incorporated therein. One end of the water pipe is connected to a water supply line 66 through a valve 68 to enable the water discharge from the nozzles to be controlled. The other end of the water pipe is provided with a drain valve 70 connected to a suitable drain tube 72 which enables the water pipe 62 to be drained after the valve 68 has been closed thereby preventing residual water from dripping from the nozzles 64. Normally, water under pressure in the pipe 62 will be discharged from the nozzle 64 as a fine atomized mist which will combine with the heat produced by the heating elements 54 to provide a vapor heat.
Attached to and depending from the open bottom end of the housing 20 is a flexible skirt or panel 74 which has the upper edge thereof secured to an outturned flange 76 on the lower end of the housing in any suitable manner such as by using a drawstring, resilient member. hooks or other suitable clamping devices whereby the flexible panel 74 may be disconnected from the housing or connected thereto. The flexible panel 74 is of an absorbent fabric material, such as toweling or the like and has substantial vertical dimensions as illustrated in FIG. 2 with the bottom 78 generally being downwardly bowed when suspended from the housing.
When the housing 20 is lowered toward the table 12 with the body 14 in position, the bottom 78 of the flexible panel or skirt will engage the body and will, in effect, wrap around the body in that it will contact most of the side surface areas thereof as illustrated in FIG. 4 due to the fullness of the flexible panel or skirt. The skirt bottom 78 is preferably constructed of three layers of absorbent, flexible fabric material. This enables the heating elements and the housing to be varied in relation to the surface of the body while maintaining contact between the surface of the body and the flexible panel and also enables the hands of a person to be inserted between the flexible panel and the surface of the body for varying the temperature characteristics of the body surface inasmuch as raising of the panel from the surface of the body enables some degree of adjustment of the heat being transmitted to the surface of the body.
Suitable controls generally designated by numeral 80 are provided adjacent the talble so that the person receiving a heat treatment may control the heat transmitted to his body or an independent operator may control the device. The flexible nature of the skirt and the fullness thereof enables a person to get off of the table without necessarily raising the housing.
The application of vapor heat at a temperature of ap proximately F to l40F will not burn or cause discomfort as does the application of steam heat and serves to stimulate circulation of various body fluids which is further enhanced by the application of topical ointment to the surface of the body after the vapor heat has opened the pores. Heat transmission by vapor heat applied to the surface of the body penetrates more deeply into the underlying cells of the body than when dry heat is applied such as when a heat lamp is used and heat is transmitted to the body by radiation. Due to the deeper penetration, the heat will be retained for a longer period of time. Also, an attendant or the person receiving the heat treatment himself may vary or adjust the heat being transmitted by inserting his hand or hands between the flexible panel or skirt and the surface of the body thereby enabling instant adjustment of the heat characteristics in order to maintain the device comfortable to the person at all times.
The drain tube serves an important function of eliminating any dripping of hot water from the pipe through the nozzles after the valve 68 has been closed which may be objectionable since the dripping of hot water onto the fabric panel may cause concentrated areas of heat where the hot water drips onto the fabric panel.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. A body fluid circulation and vapor heat treating device comprising a horizontally elongated housing having a generally vertical peripheral wall provided with an open lower end for positioning above a portion of the body surface of a person receiving a heat treatment when oriented on a horizontal support surface, vapor heat producing means within said housing, and a flexible absorbent skirt mounted on said housing in depending relation thereto, said flexible skirt having a substantially vertically disposed peripheral wall defining a free hanging continuation of the peripheral wall of the housing and a flexible bottom panel forming a closure for the lower end of the skirt and bottom capable of flexing around the side surfaces of the body of a person receiving a heat treatment while the lower end of the housing is still substantially spaced from the body surface, said skirt and bottom panel being constructed of absorbent fabric.
2. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said vapor heat producing means includes a plurality of elongated heating elements, a plurality of water spray nozzles for discharging fine mist into the interior of the housing whereby the heating elements will produce vapor heat on said flexible skirt and panel.
3. The structure as defined in claim 2 wherein said flexible skirt has a substantial vertical dimension to enable the housing to be adjusted in relation to the surface of the body while maintaining contact of substantially the entire bottom panel on the flexible skirt with the body surface thereby enabling adjustment of the spatial relation between the surface of the body and the vapor heat producing means while maintaining contact between the surface of the body and the flexible bottom panel.
4. The structure. as defined in claim 3 together with drain means for draining the water discharge nozzles to prevent drippage of hot water onto the flexible bottom panel when the supply of water to the nozzles has been stopped.
5. The structure as defined in claim 4 together with a supporting table for supporting a person receiving a treatment, support means extending vertically from a side edge of the table vertically adjustably supporting said housing, horizontal support means at the upper end of the vertically extending support means for horizontally adjustably supporting the housing in spaced overlying relation to the table, and control means adjacent the head end of the table accessible to a person reclining on the table to enable the person receiving a treatment to control the device.
6. The method of vapor heat treating a surface area of a persons body consisting of the steps of exposing the surface area to be treated, positioning the surface in generally horizontal position, lowering a flexible absorbent panel into gravitational contact with the body surface area while loosely supported so that the panel will conform with and contact the entire surface area. applying vapor heat to the upper surface of the panel and transferring vapor heat through the panel from the upper surface to the lower surface throughout the area thereof thereby applying vapor heat to the surface area of the body being treated to a substantially equal degree, applying ointment to the surface area being treated, and supporting the periphery of the flexible panel in untaut condition from the lower open end of a housing for vapor heat producing means.
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|U.S. Classification||602/2, 392/399, 607/84|