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Publication numberUS3897776 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 5, 1975
Filing dateMar 22, 1974
Priority dateMar 22, 1974
Also published asCA1041860A1
Publication numberUS 3897776 A, US 3897776A, US-A-3897776, US3897776 A, US3897776A
InventorsJr John F Gaylord
Original AssigneeMedical Specialties Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Clavicle splint
US 3897776 A
Abstract
A clavicle splint for supporting the shoulder region of the body in a fixed position and which comprises a vertically directed back strap, and a pair of upwardly extending shoulder straps connected at the upper end of the back strap. Each shoulder strap comprises a porous core of resilient foam material having a semi-circular cross-sectional configuration which closely conforms to the anatomy of the wearer and thereby reduces the tendency of the straps to bite into the body of the wearer. Also, the core is arcuately curved along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulder and axilla and thereby alleviate the tendency of the core to buckle upon being positioned on the body of the wearer.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[ Aug. 5, 1975 l l CLAVICLE SPLINT John F. Gaylord, Jr., Matthews, N ,C.

[73] Assignee: Medical Specialties, Inc., Charlotte,

22 Filed: Mar. 22, 1974 [2!] Appl.No.:453,770

[75] Inventor:

[52] US. Cl 4. 128/87 R; IZS/DlG, i9 [51] int. Cl. A6" 5/04 [53] Field of Search t. 128/87, DIG. l9, 83; 2/44, 2/45 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 443,1l3 l2/l890 Ray 2/44 468,425 2/1892 Matthews, 2/44 508,7[3 l H1893 Horn 2/44 840,895 l/l907 Armstrong, 2/45 880,904 3/1908 Mueller 2/44 918,940 4/l909 ACcOla r r r A r t t r. 2/44 l,|37,54l 4/l9l5 Schweinburg, 2/44 l,733,349 l0/l929 Koeber A r r 2/44 l,755.64l 4/1930 Foulke r r r r l28/83 3,7l8,l37 2/1973 Gaylord, Jr, l23/87 R FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS [33,641 l0/l929 Switzerland 2/44 67,493 7/l9l4 Switzerland IZS/DIG. l9

Primary Exuminer-Richard A. Gaudet Assistant Examiner-J. Yasko Attorney, Agent, or FirmParrott, Bell, Seltzer, Par, & Gibson ABSTRACT A clavicle splint for supporting the shoulder region of the body in a fixed position and which comprises a vertically directed back strap, and a pair of upwardly extending shoulder straps connected at the upper end of the back strap. Each shoulder strap comprises a porous core of resilient foam material having a semicircular cross-sectional configuration which closely conforms to the anatomy of the wearer and thereby reduces the tendency of the straps to bite into the body of the wearer. Also, the core is arcuately curved along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulder and axilla and thereby alleviate the tendency of the core to buckle upon being positioned on the body of the wearer.

10 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures CLAVICLE SPLINT The present invention relates to a novel clavicle splint of the type disclosed in applicants prior US. Pat. No. 3,718,137.

The clavicle splint disclosed in the above patent comprises a pair of shoulder straps, with each strap extending over one shoulder, under the axilla, and to a connector positioned in the middle of the wearers back. Each of the straps comprises a relatively porous core of foam material and has a D-shaped cross-sectional configuration such that the longitudinal edges along the side immediately adjacent the body of the wearer are contoured to present a rounded, non-biting, engaging surface.

While the above described clavicle splint serves well its intended function, it has been found that the straps of the splint occasionally buckle in the region of the axilla, and such buckling results in the formation ofa relatively rigid fold line which may tend to bite into the body and produce discomfort to the wearer.

It is accordingly an object of the present invention to provide a clavicle splint having a configuration which substantially alleviates the tendency of the straps to buckle in the region of the axilla.

It is another object of the present invention to provide a clavicle splint wherein the straps have a crosssectional configuration which closely conforms to the anatomy of the wearer to thereby further reduce any tendency of the straps to bite into the body and produce discomfort to the wearer.

It is another object of the present invention to provide a clavicle splint which promotes circulation of air along the inner surface which is in contact with the body to thereby facilitate the escape of body heat and perspiration from beneath the straps.

It is a more general object of the present invention to provide a clavicle splint which may be worn for an extended period of time without undue discomfort to the wearer, and which is also capable of reducing clavicular fracture and providing adequate body support.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention are acheived in the embodiment illustrated herein by the provision of a clavicle splint which comprises a vertically extending back strap, and a pair of shoulder straps connected at the upper end of the back strap. Each of the shoulder straps comprises a porous core of resilient foam material, the core having a generally semi-circular cross-sectional configuration along the portion thereof which is designed to pass through the axilla so as to present a rounded surface in contact with the body of the wearer. In addition, the core is formed with an arcuate curvature along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulders and axilla and thereby substantially alleviate the tendency of the core to buckle in the region of the axilla. An outer porous fabric cover surrounds the core, and a tape is secured at the outer end of the core and extends for a distance sufficient to reach the lower end of the back strap. Suitable attachment means are carried by the back strap for securing the tapes thereto.

Some of the objects and advantages of the invention having been stated, others will appear as the description proceeds when taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which FIG. I is a rear elevation view of a clavicle splint embodying the present invention and illustrating the same in a relaxed condition;

FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of the core of one of the straps of the splint illustrated in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a front elevation view illustrating the manner in which the clavicle splint is positioned on the body of the wearer;

FIG. 4 is a rear elevation view illustrating the clavicle splint positioned on the body of the wearer;

FIGS. 5 through 8 are sectional views taken substantially along the lines 55, 6-6, 7-7 and 88, respectively, in FIG. 2;

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary perspective view, partly sectioned, illustrating the components of one of the straps of the clavicle splint; and

FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional view of one of the straps of the illustrated clavicle splint.

Referring more specifically to the drawings, a clavicle splint embodying the present invention is illustrated generally at 12. The splint comprises a pair of shoulder straps l4 and 14a, and a relatively short back strap 16. When positioned on the wearer, the back strap l6 extends in a generally vertical direction, and the two shoulder straps are attached, as by stitching, at the upper end of the back strap to form a Y-shaped connection at 17. More particularly, the shoulder straps are upwardly disposed from the connection at 17 at an acute equal angle to either side of the vertical. The lower end of the back strap 16 carries attachment means 18 which includes a conventional buckle 19 for adjustably attaching the same to the strap, and a pair of similar buckles 19a and 19b for the purposes hereinafter set forth.

Each of the shoulder straps l4 and 14a comprises a porous core 20 of resilient foam material, the core including a rear portion generally indicated at 23 which is adapted to overlie the back and shoulders of the wearer, a forward portion 24 adapted to pass through the axilla of the wearer, and an outer end at 25, note FIG. 2.

The core 20 has a cross-sectional configuration which varies along the length thereof as best seen in FIGS. 5-8. More particularly, the core has a generally rectangular cross-sectional configuration along the rear portion 23, and a generally semi-circular crosssectional configuration (i.e., in the form of a segment of a circle) along the forward portion 24. In addition, the core defines an outer surface 26 which faces away from the body of the wearer and which is substantially flat throughout the length thereof, and an inner surface 28 which is generally flat along the rear portion 23 but is generally semi-cylindrical along the forward portion. By this arrangement, the core 20 presents a flat, broad area of contact along the region of the wearer's back and shoulders, and presents a rounded surface in contact with the axilla which substantially reduces the tendency of the strap to bite into the body and impinge the brachial artery and the radial, ulna, and median nerves. Also, the described cross-sectional configuration of the core closely conforms to the anatomy of the wearer through the axilla and thereby permits the splint to be worn for substantial periods of time without undue discomfort.

As best seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, the forward portion 24 of the core is arcuately curved along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulders and axilla of the wearer. Typically, for an adult size splint, such curvature of the forward portion extends between about 6080 along the arc ofa circle as illustrated by the angle A in FIG. 2, and the radius R of the arc is between about -11 inches. By this arrangement, little additional bending is required in order to position the straps on the wearer, and the tendency of the core to buckle during use and form a relatively rigid fold line is thereby substantially alleviated.

Each of the straps l4 and 14a further comprises an outer porous fabric cover 30 surrounding the core and extending along the longitudinal length thereof. Preferably, the fabric cover 30 comprises a resilient and conformable knit fabric material, such as a knit cotton sleeve, and is positioned to smoothly overlie the core without substantial puckering when the strap is in the relaxed condition as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. In order to maintain this smooth, non-puckered relationship when the splint is worn, the cover 30 may be initially assembled on the core under tension so as to be slightly stretched in the longitudinal direction. Thus when the strap is applied on the wearer, any shortening of the longitudinal length of the surface 28 resulting from the slight bending of the strap may be accommodated by the cover without resulting in its puckering. This absence of puckering further enhances the comfort of the splint by insuring that a non interrupted, smooth surface will be in contact with the wearer.

As best seen in FIGS. 9 and 10, the inner surface 28 of each core includes myriad discrete, closely spaced, protruding dimples 31 on substantially the entire area thereof. As will be apparent from FIG. 10, these dimples serve to hold the porous fabric cover 30 in spaced relation with respect to the core, and they thereby permit air circulation along the inner surface 28. By this arrangement, the escape of body heat and perspiration from beneath the straps of the splint is facilitated to thereby further reduce any discomfort to the wearer.

A tape 32 is secured to the outer end of the core 20 and fabric cover by a suitable arrangement such as stitching through the core and cover as illustrated at 34. The tape 32 extends for a distance sufficient to reach the lower end of the back strap 16 and attachment means 18 when the associated shoulder strap is positioned over the shoulder and through the axilla. As seen in FIG. 4, the tape 32 is adapted to be adjustably connected to one of the buckles 19a and 19b to maintain the positioning of the splint on the wearer. As will be apparent, conventional Velcro fasteners, or any other suitable connector, could be substituted for the buckles 19a and 19b, if desired.

Each of the straps l4 and 140 further comprises a substantially nonstretchable fabric webbing 36 overlying the outer surface 26 and positioned within the fabric cover 30, note FIG. 9. The webbing 36 is interconnected to the vertical back strap l6 by the stitching at 17, and is also interconnected to the tape 32 by the stitching at 34 to thereby substantially preclude the longitudinal stretching of the strap.

The back strap 16, and the tape 32 and webbing 36 of each strap may consist of any conventional nonresilient fabric, such as woven cotton tape. Also, the core 20 is preferably formed from discrete particles of resilient polyurethane foam material bonded together with a suitable binder. More particularly, the particles and binder are placed in a suitable mold to produce the above described arcuate curvature, and cured as by subjecting to steam. The resulting foam material has a density of between about 4 to 6 pounds per cubic foot, and is sufficiently rigid or stiff to provide a firm support. In addition, the foam material is sufficiently porous to permit ventilation therethrough to the surface of the skin. A foam material of this type is further described in applicants prior US. Pat. No. 3,374,785, the disclosure of which is expressly incorporated herein by reference. if desired, the density may vary along the length of the core so as to have a higher density (e.g., about 6 pounds per cubic foot) at the ends thereof to provide a strong base of support for the stitching passing therethrough, while having a lower density (e.g., about 4 pounds per cubic foot) along the medial portion.

In the drawings and specification, there has been set forth a preferred embodiment of the invention, and although specific terms are employed, they are used in a generic and descriptive sense only and not for purposes of limitation.

That which is claimed is:

l. A clavicle splint for bracing the shoulder region of the body without biting into the body of the wearer and thereby causing discomfort to the wearer and without tending to impinge the brachial artery or the radial, ulna, and median nerves, said splint comprising a relatively short vertically extending back strap,

a pair of shoulder straps connected at the upper end of said back strap and extending upwardly from said back strap at an acute equal angle to either side of the vertical, each of said shoulder straps comprising a. a porous core of resilient foam material defining a rear portion immediately adjacent said back strap and adapted to overlie the back and shoulders of the wearer, a forward portion adapted to pass through the axilla of the wearer, and an outer end, said core having a cross-sectional configuration which varies along the length thereof and including a generally rectangular crosssectional configuration along said rear portion, and a generally semi-circular cross-sectional configuration along said forward portion to thereby present a rounded surface in contact with the axilla of the wearer and provide increased comfort and reduce the tendency of the strap to bite into the body and impinge the brachial artery and the radial, ulna, and median nerves, said core further being formed with an arcuate curvature along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulder and axilla of the wearer when placed thereon and thereby alleviate the tendency of said core to buckle upon being positioned on the body of the wearer,

b. an outer porous fabric cover surrounding said core and extending along the longitudinal length thereof, and

c. a tape secured to said outer end of said core and extending for a distance sufficient to reach the lower end of said back strap when the shoulder strap is positioned over the shoulder and through the axilla, and

attachment means at the lower end of said back strap for securing each of said tapes to said back strap.

2. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 1 wherein said core defines an outer surface which is substantially flat throughout the length thereof, and an inner surface which is generally flat along said rear portion and generally semi-cylindrical along said forward portion, said inner surface including myriad discrete, closely spaced, protruding dimples on substantially the entire area thereof to hold said porous fabric in spaced relation to said core and thereby facilitate air circulation along said inner surface.

3. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 2 wherein each of said straps further comprises a substantially non-stretchable fabric webbing overlying said outer surface and positioned within said fabric cover, said webbing being interconnected to said vertical back strap and said tape to thereby substantially preclude longitudinal stretching of said strap.

4. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 1 wherein said foam material comprises discrete particles of resilient polyurethane foam bonded together and having a density of between about 4 to 6 pounds per cubic foot.

5. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 1 wherein said fabric cover of each strap comprises a resilient knit fabric material which smoothly overlies the core.

6. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 5 wherein said fabric cover is maintained in a slightly stretched condition to thereby substantially preclude the puckering of the material when the splint is positioned on the wearer.

7. A clavicle splint for bracing the shoulder region of the body without biting into the body of the wearer and thereby causing discomfort to the wearer and without tending to impinge the brachial artery of the radial, ulna, and median nerves, said splint comprising a relatively short vertically extending back strap,

a pair of shoulder straps connected at the upper end of said back strap and extending upwardly from said back strap at an acute equal angle to either side of the vertical, each of said shoulder straps comprising a porous core of resilient foam material defining a rear portion immediately adjacent said back strap and adapted to overlie the back and shoulders of the wearer, a forward portion adapted to pass through the axilla of the wearer, and an outer end, said forward portion of said core being formed with an arcuate curvature along the longitudinal length thereof so as to tend to naturally encircle the shoulder and axilla of the wearer and thereby alleviate the tendency of said core to buckle upon being positioned on the body of the wearer and having a cross-sectional configuration which defines a rounded semi-circular inner surface which is adapted to contact the axilla of the wearer to provide increased comfort and reduce the tendency of the straps to bite into the body and impinge the brachial artery and the radial, ulna, and median nerves, and an outer porous fabric cover surrounding said core and extending along the longitudinal length thereof, and

means for adjustably connecting said outer end of each of said shoulder straps to the lower end of said back strap.

8. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 7 wherein said curvature of said forward portion of said core extends between about 80 along the arc of a circle.

9. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 8 wherein each of said shoulder straps further comprises a tape secured to said core and extending outwardly from said outer end for a distance sufficient to reach the lower end of said back strap when the shoulder strap is positioned over the shoulder and through the axilla, and said connecting means comprises means for securing each of said tapes to said back strap.

10. The clavicle splint as defined in claim 9 wherein said fabric cover comprises a resilient and comformable knit sleeve, said sleeve being under tension so as to be slightly stretched and thereby substantially preclude the sleeve from puckering during use.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4570619 *Oct 27, 1982Feb 18, 1986Jung CorporationClavicle brace
US4785803 *Jun 19, 1986Nov 22, 1988Temova EstablishmentShoulder truss
US4947870 *Jun 6, 1988Aug 14, 1990Larcher Angelo CProviding downward pressure
US4966136 *Apr 6, 1989Oct 30, 1990Bates Norman ROrthopedic support device
US5133340 *Jan 15, 1991Jul 28, 1992Beiersdorf AktiengesellschaftClavicle bandage
US5672149 *Feb 21, 1996Sep 30, 1997Schutt & Grundei Orthopadietechnik GmbhClavicle bandage
US5709648 *Sep 18, 1996Jan 20, 1998Joseph Walter WebbResilient back support device
US5868691 *Oct 15, 1996Feb 9, 1999Vishnevsky; JohnPosture training device
US6190340 *Oct 14, 1998Feb 20, 2001Phillip And Joanne BorellArm, shoulder, and back support
US6315747 *Jul 24, 2000Nov 13, 2001James Patrick ToolePosture aid apparatus
US6544205Aug 15, 2000Apr 8, 2003Beiersdorf AgClavicle bandage
US6991611Feb 14, 2003Jan 31, 2006Jhoon Goo RheePosture apparatus
US7578798Jan 30, 2006Aug 25, 2009Jhoon Goo RheePosture apparatus
US8226453 *Aug 15, 2007Jul 24, 2012Clover Group International LimitedShoulder strap and method for manufacturing the same
US8783537Jul 28, 2011Jul 22, 2014Romina GhassemiErgonomic backpack
US8808212Jan 19, 2011Aug 19, 2014Virginia Obana RedmondElastic shoulder support device for training mind and muscles for proper posture
US8833370 *Feb 6, 2013Sep 16, 2014Resmed LimitedErgonomic and adjustable respiratory mask assembly with frame
US20080060745 *Aug 15, 2007Mar 13, 2008Wai Ching Andy LauShoulder strap and method for manufacturing the same
US20130146059 *Feb 6, 2013Jun 13, 2013Resmed LimitedErgonomic and adjustable respiratory mask assembly with frame
DE4236654A1 *Oct 30, 1992May 5, 1994Miro Klinik Und Aerztebedarf GFertigbandage
DE19939005A1 *Aug 17, 1999Feb 22, 2001Beiersdorf AgClavicula-Bandage
EP0379929A1 *Jan 16, 1990Aug 1, 1990Beiersdorf AktiengesellschaftClavicle bandage
EP0595161A1 *Oct 19, 1993May 4, 1994MIRO KLINIK-UND ÄRZTEBEDARF GmbHReady for use bandage
EP0728452A1 *Feb 15, 1996Aug 28, 1996SCHÜTT & GRUNDEI ORTHOPÄDIETECHNIK GmbHClavicle bandage
EP0781536A1Dec 26, 1996Jul 2, 1997Richard Freres S.A.Clavicle immobilization orthesis
EP1077050A1Aug 1, 2000Feb 21, 2001Beiersdorf AGClavicle bandage
WO2011053261A1 *Oct 25, 2010May 5, 2011Krekan ClaudiaCompensation aid
Classifications
U.S. Classification602/19, 128/DIG.190
International ClassificationA61F5/058
Cooperative ClassificationA61F5/05808, Y10S128/19
European ClassificationA61F5/058B