US 3878568 A
A universal style pad for aid in positioning a breast form or prosthesis on a wearer. The pad comprises a compressible foam plastic layer with one slightly elongated end portion extending therefrom, the layer being beveled from both face surfaces around the periphery thereof and being received in a fabric cover having two pockets therein for receiving a breast form therein with the end portion of the pad being exposed at all times to lie against a wearer's body. The cover is readily removed from the pad through an opening formed in the cover and it has two reversible pockets therein to receive the breast form on different faces of the foam layer.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 Connelly [451 Apr. 22, 1975 1 1 REVERSIBLE PAD. REMOVABLE COVER AND BREAST FORM COMBINATION  Inventor: William N. Connelly, Mooadore.
 Assignee: Atco Surgical Supply Inc.. Cuyahoga Falls. Ohio  Filed: Feb. 27, 1974  Appl. No.: 446,201
 US. Cl. 3/36  Int. Cl. A6lf 1/00; A41c 3/10  Field of Search 3/36;
Primary E.\'aminerRonald L. Frinks Attorney. Agent. or FirmOldham & Oldham Co.
57 ABSTRACT A universal style pad for aid in positioning a breast form or prosthesis on a wearer. The pad comprises a compressible foam plastic layer with one slightly elongated end portion extending therefrom. the layer being beveled from both face surfaces around the peripherythereof and being received in a fabric cover having two pockets therein for receiving a breast form therein with the end portion of the pad being exposed at all times to lie against a wearers body. The cover is readily removed from the pad through an opening formed in the cover and it has two reversible pockets therein to receive the breast form on different faces of the foam layer.
This invention particularly relates to breast form support pads and pad covers for women that have had mastectomies and which pad is adapted to position a breast form properly on either the left or right side of the wearer.
5 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures REVERSIBLE PAD, REMOVABLE COVER AND BREAST FORM COMBINATION BACKGROUND OF INVENTION When a woman has had a radical mastectomy, not only is the breast completely removed. but, depending upon the particular condition of the wearer and the techniques of the attending surgeon. normally a number of muscle layers covering a portion of the persons chest also are removed. Thus, for the woman to have a normal appearance, she will wear a breast form or prosthesis which is designed to simulate the natural breast. However, because of the removal of the muscles, such as the pectoral muscle, fatty layers underneath the breast, and the lateral breast portion, there is a hollow area formed on the wearer's chest extending towards the shoulder adjacent the breast and extending over part of the side of her chest. Hence, heretofore, in many instances, women who have had radical mastectomies would wear some type ofa support pad or insert between their chest and the breast form or prosthesis. These support pads have heretofore been designed as either "rights" or lefts to be worn by a woman who has had either a right or a left radical mastectomy to aid in filling the cavity in the auxiliary area over her chest. Inasmuch as the breast form prostheses themselves must be supplied in a number of different sizes and/or types, and the company selling these articles must also stock a number of different styles of support pads, and particularly rights or lefts," some appreciable inventory of articles must be maintained.
It is the general object of the present invention to provide a novel and improved support pad for a breast form, and particularly to provide a support pad and a cover therefor which are of a universal design and the pad has an end portion extending substantially vertically, when the pad is used as either a right or a left support pad, towards the wearer's shoulder.
Another object of the invention is to provide an improved covered support pad for a breast form for use by women who have had mastectomies and wherein the support pad cover has top and bottom pockets therein with a breast form being adapted to be received in the pockets at all times, but with the pockets being adapted to be reversed in position to engage different face surfaces of the foam layer, dependent upon whether a right or a left mastectomy has been performed on the wearer.
A further object of the invention is to provide a breast form support pad including a resilient foam plastic layer and a fabric cover therefor and wherein the plastic layer can readily be removed from the fabric cover through a large opening in the cover at one end thereof for washing the pad or cover.
Another object of the invention is to reduce the amount of inventory required for suppliers of breast forms and support pads therefor.
The foregoing and other objects and advantages of the invention will be made more apparent as the specification proceeds.
Attention now is particularly directed to the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a front elevation of the universal style pad and cover of the invention, the pad being substantially in a position for use by a wearer having had a radical left mastectomy;
FIG. 2 is an elevation of the pad of FIG. 1 with the pockets reversed and with a breast form received therein in substantially the position to apply toa wearer having had a right radical mastectomy.
FIG. 3 is an elevation of just the breast form pad of FIG. 1 with a portion of the cover removed to show details of the support pad;
FIG. 4 is a detail vertical section showing the contour of the pad at an edge portion thereof; and
FIG. 5 is an elevation of the pad and breast form as worn by a person having had a radical left mastectomy.
When referring to corresponding members shown in the drawings and referred to in the specification, corresponding numerals are used to facilitate comparison therebetween.
SUBJECT MATTER OF THE INVENTION This invention, as one embodiment thereof, relates to a universal style pad for positioning a breast form on a wearer and it comprises a soft compressible foam plastic layer having inner and outer surfaces and an end portion, the foam layer being beveled downwardly and outwardly from both surfaces around its periphery, and a fabric cover for the plastic layer, the fabric cover having top and bottom side pockets therein which overlap slightly at one end for receiving a breast form therein and with the end portion extending upwardly of the wearer. The pockets are reversible to be associated with opposite faces of the foam layer.
The accompanying drawings show further details of the invention and a universal style pad embodying the principles of the invention is indicated as a whole by the numeral 10. This pad 10 includes a layer 12 of a resilient, soft, compressible foam plastic material, which material can be of any suitable composition. one example of which would be a soft resilient foamed polyethylene material. Such layer 12 has face surfaces 14 and 16 with downwardly and outwardly beveled edges 18 and 19 formed around the periphery of the layer. The layer 12 has a rounded lower inner end 21 and a bluntly pointed lower outer end 23,
As one feature of the pad of the invention, the foam layer 12 is provided with a narrow end portion 20 of generally triangular shape which, in general, extends vertically of the universal style pad 10 as shown in FIG. 1 as the pad 10 would be rotated about 45 or more to the right from the position shown when the pad is operatively positioned.
The pad of the invention is adapted to be used with conventional breast forms or prosthesis as are generally available on the market today. As indicated in the drawings, a prosthesis 24 is shown and this is generally of tear drop shape, having a base portion 26 and a reduced width and size end portion 28 formed thereon. Normally, the prosthesis 24 is made from some compressible flexible material such as a plastic or rubber material and it has some type of a liquid means received therein to provide a flexible article simulating a natural breast. Hence, when the prosthesis 24 is worn, as by being positioned in the receiving pocket or cup of a brassiere, the wearer has a natural appearance.
FIG. 2 indicates how the end portion 20 normally protrudes from the assembly of the breast form into the support pad whereby it normally extends vertically beyond the brassiere cup in which the assembly is positioned. FIG. 5 shows the end portion 20 of the support pad extending from a brassiere to aid in filling in the cavity adjacent the shoulder area. In positioning the pad and breast form in a brassiere, the assembly of FIG. 2 is usually turned through a slight angle or are of about 45 to 90 to the left to aid in positioning the end 20 over or in the cavity over the wearers chest. The end 20 normally is held in place by the brassiere shoulder strap. This would give a right fitting as opposed to FIG. 5 which is a left.
A fabric cover 30 of special construction receives the foam plastic layer 12 therein. This fabric cover 30 is formed from any suitable fabric means and a seam is provided at the edge portions of layers 32 and 34 of the fabric cover to secure such cover layers together and form a pocket in which the foam layer 12 is received. The layer 32 is of the size of the foam layer and the layer 34 extends from the end portion towards the opposite side of the foam layer to terminate at 35 spaced appreciably from such side or edge of the foam layer to provide a large opening in the cover for removal of the foam layer to wash the cover.
As a further feature of the invention, two pocket forming members 36 and 38 are provided in the cover, The pocket 36 is the inner end pocket and the pocket 38 is the outer end pocket and an end portion of the outer end pocket. which is slanted, overlaps an end of the inner end pocket. Both of these pockets preferably are formed from double thicknesses of the fabric material used in forming the cover, and with the edge portions of the pockets being secured to the seam provided between the layers 32 and 34 to form a compact, neat cover in which the plastic layer 12 is received. As indicated. the pockets 36 and 38 are only attached around the periphery of the fabric cover whereby the inner portions of the pocket are free to receive the prosthesis 24 therein as indicated in the drawings. The pocket forming layers snugly fit over the foam layer 12 and the cover layers 34 and a shortened layer 33, as in FIG. 1.
A feature of the fabric cover is that the pockets 36 and 38 can be reversed to be associated with either the full fabric layer 32 or the shortened layers 34 and 33 dependent upon whether the pad and cover are to be used with a radical left or a right mastectomy. The flexible foam layer and the fact that the pockets are attached to the cover only at the periphery thereof facilitate such reversal of the pockets to make the pad and cover of universal design, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2.
The layers 32, 33 and 34 remain in engagement with the foam layer by the abbreviated layer 34 extending around the peak of the pointed upper end 20. The cover 30 is completed by the partial layer of section 33 which is secured to the edge seam and extends inwardly of the pad from the end or side opposed to the end portion 20 to slightly overlap the layer 34 on the under surface thereof. A large opening is formed in the cover opposite to the end portion 20 between the slightly overlapped partial layers 33 and 34 for removal of the compressible foam layer.
Obviously these pads and covers of the invention can be provided in any desired number of sizes.
By the present invention, an improved breast form support pad and cover have been provided to fill in surgical cavitities in the chest area, and this pad unit is re versible and/or is adapted for use as either a right, or a left support pad depending upon the requirements of the wearer. The support pad, and the components thereof can be readily washed or cleaned, and the support pad provides an effective support means for the breast form. It is believed that the objects of the invention have been achieved.
What is claimed is:
l. A universal style pad for aid in positioning a breast prosthesis on a wearer, who has had a radical right or left mastectomy, and comprising a soft compressible foam plastic layer having a rounded base, a rounded top and a protruding end portion, the layer being beveled downwardly and outwardly from both surfaces around its periphery, said end portion being adapted to extend from a prosthesis in the direction of towards the wearers adjacent shoulder when on a person having had either a right or a left mastectomy, and a fabric cover means for said plastic layer, and said fabric cover means includes means forming a base pocket thereon and a top pocket which is slanted and overlaps said base pocket at one end thereof, a breast form being adapted to be positioned by said base pocket and said top pocket.
2. A universal style pad as in claim I where said fabric cover has inner and outer layers forming a pocket in which said pad is received, a seam being formed between said inner and outer layers at the lateral edges of said pad, one of said layers extending from said end portion to a location short of the opposite side of the foam layer to leave an opening for insertion and removal of said pad from said fabric cover, said base and side pockets being attached to said fabric cover at the seam therein and being reversible at said seam to be positioned adjacent either of said layers in the cover for receiving a breast form primarily in said base pocket for use of the pad as either a right or a left as required.
3. A universal style pad and cover combination for aid in positioning a breast prosthesis on a wearer who has had a radical right or left mastectomy, and comprising a soft compressible foam plastic layer having a base and a top portion and an end portion of generally triangular shape protruding from the layer, and a fabric cover for said plastic layer, said cover including a base and a top pocket secured to the cover only at a peripheral seam therein and with the pockets being reversible to be adjacent either face of the plastic layer to receive and support a prosthesis.
4. A universal style pad as in claim 3 where said foam layer has a rounded lower end and a bluntly pointed upper end, and said fabric cover includes two opposed layers and the cover engages said ends to be retained in engagement with said plastic layer, a large opening being provided in the cover by termination of one layer a distance from an edge of the plastic layer extending between said ends.
5. A universal style pad as in claim 4 where said fabric cover has one continuous layer extending over said foam layer and one discontinuous layer formed by overlapping fabric sections. said continuous layer, fabric sections and said pockets being sewn together around the periphery of the pad, the large opening being formed between adjacent edges of said fabric sections.