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Publication numberUS3867938 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 25, 1975
Filing dateAug 1, 1973
Priority dateAug 1, 1973
Publication numberUS 3867938 A, US 3867938A, US-A-3867938, US3867938 A, US3867938A
InventorsRadcliffe Remington
Original AssigneeSchick Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Hygienic syringe
US 3867938 A
Abstract
A hygienic syringe operable from gas-producing chemical pills for applying a jet of fluid to a desired body area comprises a sealed fluid reservoir fitted at one end with a flexible communicating hose and dispensing nozzle, and fitted at its other end with a one-way valve through which chemicals can be inserted into the reservoir. Prior to use, gas-producing chemicals in pill form are loaded into respective compartments in a compartmentized chemical carrier and the reservoir is filled with fluid. After the dispensing probe has been positioned the syringe is activated by inserting the chemical carrier through the one-way valve, which brings the gas-generating chemicals into contact with the solution therein and generates sufficient gas pressure to force the fluid from the reservoir. By reason of the chemical carrier and one-way valve, positioning of the reservoir is not critical, no special skill is required on the part of the user, and it is not necessary to invert the reservoir prior to use.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Radcliffe Feb. 25, 1975 HYGIENIC SYRlNGE [75] Inventor: Remington Radcliffe, Lancaster, Pa.

[73] Assignee: Schick Incorporated, Lancaster, Pa.

[22] Filed: Aug. 1, 1973 [21] Appl. No.: 384,593

[52] US. Cl 128/225, 128/251 [51] Int. Cl A61m 3/00 [58] Field of Search 128/225, 224, 227, 251; 222/394, 398, 399

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,623,519 12/1952 Cohen 128/225 X 2,803,249 8/1957 Wilson et al.. 128/225 3,232,493 2/1966 Beard, Jr. 128/225 X 3,561,433 2/1971 Kovach 128/225 X 3,756,230 9/1973 Murray et a1. 128/225 3,756,236 9/1973 Murray et a1. 128/225 Primary Examiner -Richard A. Gaduet Assistant ExaminerJ. Yasko [57] ABSTRACT A hygienic syringe operable from gas'producing chemical pills for applying a jet of fluid to a desired body area comprises a sealed fluid reservoir fitted at one end with a flexible communicating hose and dispensing nozzle, and fitted at its other end with a oneway valve through which chemicals can be inserted into the reservoir. Prior to use, gas-producing chemicals in pill form are loaded into respective compartments in a compartmentized chemical carrier and the reservoir is filled with fluid. After the dispensing probe has been positioned the syringe is activated by inserting the chemical carrier through the one-way valve, which brings the gas-generating chemicals into contact with the solution therein and generates sufficient gas pressure to force the fluid from the reservoir. By reason of the chemical carrier and one-way valve, positioning of the reservoir is not critical, no special skill is required on the part of the user, and it is not necessary to invert the reservoir prior to use.

6 Claims, 8 Drawing; Figures HYGIENHC svunvoe BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates generally to hygienic syringes for use in administering antiseptic or medicated solutions, and more particularly to a hygienic syringe employed in feminine hygiene for the purpose of effecting a prescribed and safe treatment of the vagina.

Prior art hygienic syringes, which have been either of the fountain-type, wherein hydrostatic pressure is relied upon to force fluid from an elevated container or reservoir bag through a flexible hose to a multipleapertured nozzle, or of thepressure type, wherein gas pressure is generated within the reservoir to force the fluid through the hose, have experienced considerable difflculty in providing a jet of fluid at a suitable pressure for application to the internal portions of the human body. The pressure of such fluid jets tended to be either inadequate for effective treatment, or excessive and therefore dangerous to the health of the person being treated.

In the case of fountain-type syringes, the pressure of the fluid flow at the nozzle is dependent on the height of the reservoir above the point of application. Since the reservoir is often hung from an available support (such as a door hinge or curtain rod) almost invariably selected because of convenience, and without regard to the proper hydrostatic pressure generated, the pressure is often not optimum for the particular application. Attempts at controlling pressure by means of a pinch clamp on the hose, or by holding the container in one hand and releasing a pinch clamp on the hose with the other hand, were awkward and provided generally unsatisfactory results.

In the case of pressure-type hygienic syringes,'the pressure at the nozzle is dependent on gas generation within the reservoir, which is typically accomplished by the introduction of gas-generating chemicals such as bicarbonate of soda and citric acid, or the like, into the solution in the reservoir. While overcoming the problem of finding a suitable elevation for the reservoir, pressure-type hygienic syringes have heretofore lacked a suitable means for introducing the chemicals into the reservoir. The means of introduction must necessarily not'compromise the pressure seal of the reservoir, and preferably should not require the user to measure out specific quantities of the chemical. Also, the user preferably should not have to dismantle the reservoir to gain access to the interior when adding chemicals, and the introduction of the chemical should be capable of being accomplished with one hand quickly and without special skill so. that the nozzle can be positioned with the other hand prior to use.

One attempt at overcoming these problems has centered on placing the chemical in pill form on retaining clips within the reservoir above the level of the fluid. Then, by inverting the reservoir the fluid is brought into contact with the chemical pill to cause the desired gas generation. Unfortunately, such inversion of the reservoir is often inconvenient and may result in accidental or premature actuation of the chemical. Furthermore, the introduction of the chemical into the reservoir necessitates dismantling the reservoir to gain access to its interior, at best an undesirable and time-consuming task.

Another problem associated with prior-art hygienic syringe devices has been the difficulty of introducing a medicament into the solution concurrently with the gasgenerating bicarbonate pill. The introduction of the medicament, in pill form, presents similar problems to that of the bicarbonate pill, with the additional problem of preventing interaction between the two chemicals prior to their use in the syringe.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, it is a general object of the present invention to provide a new and improved hygienic syringe.

It is a more specific object of the present invention to provide a new and improved hygienic syringe which is more convenient to use.

It is another specific object of the present invention to provide a new and improved hygienic syringe of the pressure type wherein application of the fluid is controlled without having to reorientate the fluid reservoir.

It is another specific object of the present invention to provide a new and improved hygienic syringe which permits the introduction of gas-forming and medicament chemicals to its reservoir without the need of opening the reservoir.

Accordingly, the invention is directed to a hygienic syringe operable from a gas-forming chemical for applying a jet of fluid under a predetermined pressure to a desired body area. The syringe comprises means in cluding a housing for defining a. sealed reservoir for containing the fluid; a nozzle for applying the fluid under pressure to the desired body area; and means for conveying fluid from the reservoir to the nozzle. Means comprising a chemical carrier are provided for containing the chemical, and means comprising a one-way valve in the housing are provided for facilitating insertion of the chemical carrier into the reservoir to cause the chemical to produce a pressure therein to force the fluid through the nozzle.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The features of the present invention, which are believed to be novel, are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. The invention, together with the further objects and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in the several figures of which like reference numerals identify like elements, and in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view ofa hygienic syringe constructed in accordance with the invention.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the hygienic syringe of FIG. 1 showing principal elements thereof.

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the inlet end of the reservoir of the hygienic syringe of FIGS. 1 and 2.

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the hygienic syringe of FIG. 1.

FIG. 5 is a front elevational view of the chemicalcarrier portion of the hygienic syringe of FIGS. 1-4.

FIG. 6 is an end view of the chemical-carrier of the syringe of FIGS. 1-4.

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken along lines 7--7 of FIG. 6.

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view taken along lines 8-8 of FIG. 7.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Although it will be appreciated that the principles of the present invention can be applied to a number of different forms of syringes, the invention finds particular utility with respect to a small hygienic syringe for dispensing an antiseptic or medicated solution to the vaginal area, and accordingly will be described with particular reference to an exemplary embodiment wherein a reservoir is provided which communicates with a flexible hose having a multi-apertured fountain-type nozzle at its opposite end for dispensing the solution, and wherein the novel arrangement of a chemical carrier and a one-way valve is provided at one end of the reservoir for introducing chemicals in pill form into the solution to be dispensed.

Referring now to the Figures in greater detail, and in particular to FIGS. 1 and 2, a hygienic syringe constructed in accordance with the invention is seen to comprise a combined fluid and pressure chamber or reservoir 11 constructed in cylindrical form of a suitable plastic such as polystyrene. A cap 12, which may also be molded of plastic, is removably attached to one end of the chamber housing by means of threads provided on the outer wall of reservoir 11, and complementary threads on the inside rim of cap 12. Cap 12 is fitted with a centrally disposed nozzle 13 having a central bore 14 which forms an outlet port for chamber 11. A short length of flexible tubing 15 is press-fit onto nozzle 13, the rim of nozzle 13 being provided with a lip 16 (FIG. 4) over which the tubing is forced for a more secure engagement.

Tubing l5 conveys fluid from reservoir 11 to a handheld multi-apertured fountain-type dispensing nozzle 18. Reservoir 11 serves the combined function of a fluid container, mixing chamber and pressure flask; and, is preferably cylindrical in form and fabricated from either a plastic, a light metallic alloy, or a synthetic rubber. In any event, the material used must be readily moldable into an airtight, lightweight, and acid and alkaline resistant body.

While cap 12 may be fabricated from any one of the known materials specified for use in making the reservoir 11, it is preferable to form the cap and reservoir of the same material so that the coefficient of expansion, chemical resistance, hardness, etc. will be identical to simplify manufacturing of the syringe. Nozzle 13 may be fabricated of various types of metals including brass or copper, or may be fabricated from a plastic material such as that used in fabricating reservoir 11.

In accordance with the invention, the other end of reservoir 11 is provided with a one-way valve assembly 20 which, in a manner to be explained presently, facilitates the introduction of gas-forming and medicamenttype chemicals pills into the interior of the reservoir. Specifically, the one-way valve assembly 20 comprises an annular ring 21 having an apertured inwardlyconvex resilient diaphragm member 22 fastened thereto. The diaphragm member is tapered and flattened at its apex to form a slot-like aperture 23 which is normally closed but which can be opened by exertion of pressure from the outside of housing 11. In effect two opposed flexible blades are formed which join to form aperture 23. In the presence of pressure from within reservoir 11, the blades are brought tightly together to form a vapor-tight seal. However, the blades are sufficiently resilient to allow the user to insert chemicals into reservoir 11, as will be described presently.

As shown in FIG. 4, housing 11, end cap 12, and oneway valve 20 together form an enclosed vapor-tight container. Valve 20 is attached to the reservoir housing 11 by means of a channel 24 molded about the periph- 5 cry of ring member 21. This channel engages the margins of the open end of the reservoir to form a water and vapor-tight seal. The other end of reservoir 11 is sealed by end cap 12 to establish discharge port 14 as the only outlet from the reservoir. Since discharge port 14 communicates with nozzle 18 by way of the inner passageway of tubing 15, the interior of reservoir 11 is effectively connected to the discharge nozzle.

In further accord with the invention, means in the form of a chemical carrier 25 are provided for introducing chemicals through one-way valve 20 into the interior of reservoir 11. Referring to FIGS. 5-8, the chemical carrier is seen to comprise a housing 26 oval in cross-section and frustoconical in form. A longitudinally-extending divider 27 separates the cup into two sections for the purpose of receiving two measured quantities of gas-forming chemicals in the form of pills 28 and 29. These chemicals, which may be sodium bicarbonate and citric acid, or their known equivalents, combine in the presence of the solution in the reservoir to generate gas. The chemical are kept physically separated, in storage and when in the chemical carrier, prior to insertion into the reservoir to prevent premature interaction and subsequent loss of effectiveness when inserted for use. A medicament chemical, if desired, can be added to the solution in the reservoir prior to insertion of the chemical carrier.

The chemical pills are shown in a preferred cylindrical shape, but in practice may be square or rectangular provided suitable changes are made in the shape and dimensions of carrier housing 26. The larger diameter end of the carrier housing 26 is fitted with a grill 31 as shown in FIG. 6. The grill 31 is press-fit into place over the margins of the open end of the housing, and includes an annular flanged rim portion for obtaining a more secure fit and to aid in subsequent removal when inserting chemical pills into the carrier. The other smaller diameter end of housing 26 necks down to form a single slot-like aperture 32 as shown in FIG. 5. The provision of grill 31 at one end and aperture 32 at the other end facilitates fluid flow through the carrier housing 26 and thereby promotes the desired reaction between the chemicals in carrier 25 and the fluid in reservoir 11. By reason of the chemical pills being held in close proximity by the chemical carrier, a controlled but potentially vigorous chemical reaction between the gas generating chemicals is assured.

In use, the chemical carrier 25 is first loaded by removing grill 31 and inserting the two gas forming pills 28 and 29 in respective compartments of the carrier. The divider 27 separates the two compartments and prevents physical contact between the chemicals, and hence possible chemical interaction prior to insertion of the chemical carrier into the reservoir. Grill 31 is then force-fit over the open end of the carrier housing 26 to hold the pills in place. Reservoir 11 is next filled to a predetermined level with water, or another suitable fluid, by removing either cap 12 or one-way valve 20. A medicament chemical is then added to the water, if required, and the reservoir 11 is resealed and placed in a convenient position for use.

Immediately prior to use, the chemical carrier 25, with the two chemical pills contained within, is pushed through the aperture 23 of the one-way valve diaphragm 22. As the gas producing pills 28 and 29 come into contact with the water in housing 11, a rapid buildup of gas results. This forces the fluid in the reservoir out through tubing and nozzle 18.

Control of the pressure buildup within reservoir 11 is accomplished primarily through control of the chemical composition of the gas-forming chemicals contained in pills 28 and 29. Specifically, the chemicals relied upon for gas generation are buffered by suitable inert soluables such that the chemicals in the pills 28 and 29 combine within reservoir 11 more slowly. Since the rate of gas generation is a function of the chemical composition of the pills, it can be varied to suit different situations by merely varying the chemical composition of the pills.

Thus, an improved hygienic syringe has been shown and described which incorporates a novel chemical carrier and reservoir valve assembly for enabling pre determined quantities of a desired chemical to be introduced into the reservoir with increased convenience and control. No special positioning of the reservoir is required, and the cleansing action can be conveniently initiated by merely inserting the pill carrier into the res ervoir. Cleaning of the reservoir is easily accomplished by removal of either cap 12 or one-way valve 20. Furthermore, a minimal number of components are required by the hygienic syringe, making it particularly attractive for high-volume low profit margin consumer sales.

It will be appreciated that in practicing the invention reservoir 1 1 may assume other shapes and sizes and the one-way valve and end cap can be positioned at other locations on the reservoir. For example, the reservoir can be square or rectangular with the one-way valve located on one of its side faces. Furthermore, the chemical carrier 25 and the chemical pills can assume other sizes and shapes, including rectangular or cylindrical shapes, and other types of one-way valves can be provided for introducingthe carrier into the interior of the reservoir.

While a particular-embodiment of the invention has i been shown and described, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that changes and modifications may be made without departing from the invention in its broader aspects, and, therefore, the aim in the appended claims is to cover all such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.

I claim:

1. A hygienic syringe operable from a gas-producing chemical for applying a jet of fluid to a desired body area, comprising, in combination:

a reservoir housing defining a reservoir for containing said fluid;

a nozzle and hose assembly in communication with said reservoir for conveying fluid from said reservoir to said body area;

a chemical carrier includi" g a carrier housing defining a compartment for I itaininga predetermined quantity of said chemical, said carrier being separate and removable from said reservoir housing and including at least one aperture in said carrier housing for admitting fluid from outside said carrier into said compartment; and

means including an apertured inwardly-convex resilient diaphragm in said reservoir housing dimensioned to facilitate insertion of said chemical carrier through said reservoir housing into said reservoir, said valve providi'ng'a substantially vapor tight seal following insertion of said carrier whereby the pressure produced in said reservoir by said chemical in said carrier reacting with said fluid in said reservoir forces said fluid through said nozzle and hose assembly to said body area.

2. A hygienic syringe as defined in claim 1 wherein an additional chemical is added to said fluid prior to application to said body area, and wherein said chemical carrier includes an additional compartment for containing said additional chemical.

3. A hygienic syringe as defined in claim 2 wherein said additional chemical is in pill form, and wherein said additional compartment is dimensioned to receive said additional chemical pill.

said chemical pills are contained in respective compartments in said carrier and are physically separated to prevent chemical interaction therebetween prior to immersion in said fluid.

5. A hygienic syringe operable from a gas-producing chemical pill and a medicinal chemical pill for applying a jet of medicinal fluid under a predetermined pressure to a desired body area, comprising, in combination:

a reservoir housing defining a reservoir for containing said fluid;

a nozzle and hose assembly in communication with said reservoir for conveying fluid from said reservoir to said body area;

a chemical carrier including a carrier housing defining first and second compartments, said first compartment being dimensioned to receive said chemical pill, said second compartment being dimensioned to receive said medicinal pill, said compartments being arranged to prevent physical contact between said pills, and said carrier being separate and removable from said reservoir housing and ineluding at least one aperture in said carrier housing for admitting fluid from outside said carrier into said compartments; and

means comprising an apertured inwardly-convex resilient diaphragm in said reservoir housing to facilitate insertion of said chemical carrier through said reservoir housing into said reservoir, said diaphragm providing a substantially vapor tight seal following insertion of said carrier whereby the pressure produced in said reservoir by said gasproducing chemical in said compartment reacting with said fluid in said reservoir forces said fluid through said nozzle and hose assembly to said-body area.

6. A hygienic syringe operable from a gas-producing chemical for applying a jet of fluid to a desired body area, comprising, in combination: 2

a cylindrical reservoir housing defining a reservoir for containing said fluid;

a nozzle and hose assembly in communication with said reservoir for conveying fluid from said reservoir to said body area;

a chemical carrier including a carrier housing defining a compartment for contaizninga predetermined quantity of said chemical, said carrier being separate and removable from said reservoir housing and including at least one aperture in said carrier houservoir and to provide a substantially vapor tight seal following insertion of said carrier whereby the pressure produced in said reservoir by said chemical in said carrier reacting with said fluid in said reservoir forces said fluid through said nozzle and hose assembly to said body area.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2623519 *Jul 31, 1950Dec 30, 1952Cohen Milton JMedicament applicator
US2803249 *Aug 26, 1953Aug 20, 1957Barclay Pharmaceutical ProductHygienic syringe
US3232493 *Mar 10, 1964Feb 1, 1966Risdon Mfg CoPressurized dispensing package
US3561433 *Jul 22, 1968Feb 9, 1971Kovach Leslie JDental cleaning and massaging device
US3756230 *Nov 11, 1971Sep 4, 1973Gardiner FHygienic douche system
US3756236 *Mar 2, 1972Sep 4, 1973Gardiner FHygenic douche system
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4309995 *Jan 28, 1980Jan 12, 1982Sacco Susan MVaginal irrigation apparatus
US5540665 *Jan 31, 1994Jul 30, 1996Alza CorporationGas driven dispensing device and gas generating engine therefor
US6830560 *Jul 17, 2000Dec 14, 2004Elan Corporation PlcAutomatic syringe
US7717877Jul 28, 2004May 18, 2010Sid Technologies, LlcInjecting apparatus
DE2526934A1 *Jun 16, 1975Dec 16, 1976Walkner & Co Ohg Dr H & AScheidenspuelgeraet
EP0985418A2 *Sep 13, 1999Mar 15, 2000Montoya Alberto Fernandez-AriasDevice for the automatic injection of liquids
Classifications
U.S. Classification604/145
International ClassificationA61M3/00, A61M3/02
Cooperative ClassificationA61M3/0237
European ClassificationA61M3/02D2