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Publication numberUS3923604 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 2, 1975
Filing dateApr 26, 1971
Priority dateApr 26, 1971
Publication numberUS 3923604 A, US 3923604A, US-A-3923604, US3923604 A, US3923604A
InventorsFrank Monaghan
Original AssigneeM & H Plastics Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tubular articles
US 3923604 A
This invention relates to a disposable device for housing diagnostic swabs or similar devices comprising a plastic tube containing medium in a breakable sealed section and a swab in a second section adapted so that the swab can break the seal separating it from the medium.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191 Monaghan 1 1 Dec. 2, 1975 15 1 TUBULAR ARTICLES 3,163,160 12/1964 Cohen 195/139 3,450, 9 1969 A t 1. 195 139 [75] Inventor: Frank Monaghan, Glendale, Calif. 12 6/ Very c a l [73] Assignee: M & H Plastics Inc., Burbank, Calif.

I Primary E.\'aminerA. LOUIS Monacell [22] Fled: 1971 Assistant E.\'aminerRobert .1. Warden Attorney, Agent, or FirmSanf0rd Astor [2]] Appl. No.. 137,148

[52] U.S. .Cl. 195/139; 128/2 W; 206/47 R 57 ABSTRACT [51] Int. Cl. C12K 1/10 [58] Field of Search 195/127, 206/47 R' This invention relates to a disposable device for hous- 206/43, 128/2 W, 215., ing diagnostic swabs or similar devices comprising a 401/122, 132 134 plastic tube containing medium in a breakable sealed section and a swab in a second section adapted so that 5 References Cited the swab can break the seal separating it from the me- UNITED STATES PATENTS dlum" 2,724,383 11/1955 Lockhart 128/215 3 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures US. Patent Dec. 2, 1975 3,923,604

24- 5o 24 so 24 3o 2H -30 -|s FiG.1 FIG.2 FlG.4 FIG.5


FRANK MONAGHAN ATTORNEY 1 TUBULAR ARTICLES BACKGROUND OF Tl-IE INVENTION In the usual use of a swab, one is taken from a batch of sterile swabs, and then applied or rubbed against the tissue concerned to secure a sample of any offending bacteria which may be present to verify a diagnosis. This being done, the swab is then placed in a sterile container, which is sent to the laboratory, where it is removed and then placed in another container such as a Petri dish, said container having a culture medium therein, after which the dish is then placed in an incubator to grow any colonies which may be present. The growth secured, samples of said growth are taken from the dish for examination. Once finished with, the dish must then be carefully cleaned and sterilized properly in order that it may be reused. The swab of course is discarded. Although the foregoing method is effective, it is cumbersome, time wasting and complicated to insure a definite clean sterile container for future use.

This invention presents a novel means of not only keeping the swab in an individual disposable and unbreakable container, but that container also may hold the culture medium necessary for the swab, both products being housed separately within said container until time of use of the device. At the proper time the swab is used, returned to the container, brought into contact with the culture medium and the entire unit may be placed in the incubator, and the sought for colonies grown in said culture medium right in the container. A sample is taken from that medium, and then the entire unit, the swab, the culture medium and its grown infection is immediately discarded to an incinerator for removal.

This invention then presents a device that definitely insures complete sterility for the products, ease of use, saving of labor in not having parts to clean and sterilize afterward, complete disposability, and a product which is inexpensive to produce.

The methods presently in existence all use glass tubing in which a glass ampule must be broken to release any fluid medium present. Also the swab end is broken off to fit inside of a glass tube and thus the operator must do extra work and come in contact with the swab itself compromising the sterility of the operation and test.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel disposable and unbreakable plastic tube device containing a medium sealed in the tube.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a disposable tube device containing both a swab and a medium in sealed portion which can be brought together when needed.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a disposable culture tube that insures complete sterility in that even the swab is never touched by the operator.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 illustrates the front view of the plastic tube device of the present invention.

FIG. 2 illustrates a side view of the device.

FIG. 3 illustrates the upper portion of said device.

FIG. 4 illustrates the lower portion of said device.

FIG. 5 illustrates the device after use.

As shown in the figures above-mentioned, the present invention comprises a plastic tube device with an upper or swab-holding portion 10, shown alone in FIG. 3 which is a piece of hollow plastic tubing sealed at one end 12. i I h v The seal 12 is shaped in such a way that it frictionally holds the shaft end of a common swab 14, having a cotton pad 16. The device may also hold other elongated medical devices as well, such as a hypodermic.

The device of the present invention has a lower or medium holding portion 18, shown alone in FIG. 4 which is a piece of hollow plastic tubing sealed at the end 20 and having a breakable seal 22 located between the two ends of the lower portion 18 creating a closed sealed chamber 24 within lower portion 18.

The hollow plastic tubing used to make the device of the present invention is well known in the art and may be manufactured by a continuous extrusion process also well known.

The sealing and cutting of the tubing into the sizes and shapes necessary may be done with a machine such as that described in my US. Pat. No. 3,700,529 issued Oct. 24, 1972.

The upper edge 26 of lower portion 18 is open and is preferably slanted at an angle relative to the lower edge 28 of upper portion 10 which is open and preferably horizontal so that the two portions 10 and 18 can be more easily slidingly engaged.

The upper portion 10 has a slightly larger diameter than lower portion 18 so that the upper portion 10 can easily slide over lower portion to fit snugly together. The edges 26 and 28 which must slide over each other may both be horizontal but making one of the edges slide over each other may both be horizontal but making one of the edges slanted makes it much easier for the operator to put the two parts together.

The closed chamber 24 is filled just prior to sealing with a liquid medium 30. This may be any medium desired depending upon the particular test or result desired.

At the time of use the operator takes the device of the present invention, which has been sterilized by any of many known methods such as heat, or radiation, and removes the upper portion 10 which holds the swab 14. The operator then takes the sample he desires by swabbing the location to be tested with the cotton pad 16 of swab 14 and then replaces upper portion 10 by sliding it over lower portion 18. Because swab 14 is constantly covered by upper portion 10 the operator never has to directly touch swab 14.

By exerting downward pressure on the upper portion 10, swab 14 breaks through breakable seal 22, as shown in FIG. 5, and the cotton pad 16 is immersed in medium 30.

The device may be used as a transport tube where the medium 30 is used to keep the bacteria alive until the tube is taken to the laboratory and it can be transferred to a Petri dish, or as stated the tube itself may be placed in the incubator to grow the culture. Other uses can be made of the present device such as conducting a test in the tube itself where the medium 30 is one that changes color upon introduction of a certain substance.

It will be obvious to those skilled in the art that various modifications of the present invention may be resorted to in a manner limited only by a just interpretation of the following claims.

I claim: f. A liquid medium within the chamber; 1. A disposable culture tube device comprising: g. The upper and lower tubes adapted to fit tightly toa. An upper plastic tube open at one end and sealed gether.

at the other; 2. The device of claim 1 wherein the open end of the b. The seal being shaped so as to frictionally hold the 5 lower tube is cut at an angle relative to the open end end of an swab; of the upper tube. c. a swab frictionally held in said upper plastic tube, 3. The device of claim 1 wherein the upper tube has d. A lower plastic tube open at one end and sealed at a diameter larger than the lower tube so that the upper the other, having a chamber formed by, tube slides frictionally over the lower tube. e. Welding closed the plastic tube between its ends;

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2724383 *Jun 28, 1951Nov 22, 1955Compule CorpCombined mixing container structure and hypodermic syringe for segregated ingredients of hypodermically injectable preparations
US3163160 *Nov 15, 1962Dec 29, 1964Milton J CohenDisposable swab and culture medium device
US3450129 *Jul 6, 1966Jun 17, 1969Medical Supply CoSwabbing unit
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4150950 *Sep 28, 1977Apr 24, 1979Corning Glass WorksTransport system for clinical specimens
US4184483 *Mar 25, 1977Jan 22, 1980U.S. Medical Research & Development, Inc.Method of and apparatus for collecting cultures
US4387725 *Feb 10, 1981Jun 14, 1983Mull John DDevice for use in the collection and transportation of medical specimens
US4657869 *May 18, 1984Apr 14, 1987E. I. Du Pont De Nemours And CompanySelf-contained device for carrying out specific binding assays
US4707450 *Sep 25, 1986Nov 17, 1987Nason Frederic LSpecimen collection and test unit
US4838851 *Apr 14, 1988Jun 13, 1989Shabo Alan LApplicator and package therefor
US4978504 *Feb 9, 1988Dec 18, 1990Nason Frederic LSpecimen test unit
US5078968 *Dec 10, 1990Jan 7, 1992Nason Frederic LSpecimen test unit
US5238649 *Nov 25, 1991Aug 24, 1993Nason Frederic LSpecimen test unit
US5266266 *Dec 19, 1991Nov 30, 1993Nason Frederic LSpecimen test unit
US5869003 *Apr 15, 1998Feb 9, 1999Nason; Frederic L.Self contained diagnostic test unit
US5879635 *Mar 31, 1997Mar 9, 1999Nason; Frederic L.Reagent dispenser and related test kit for biological specimens
US6248294Feb 8, 1999Jun 19, 2001Frederic L. NasonSelf contained diagnostic test unit
US6991898Oct 20, 2003Jan 31, 2006Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc.Diagnostic test device and method of using same
US8677843Feb 10, 2009Mar 25, 20143M Innovative Properties CompanySample acquisition device
US8740831 *Dec 14, 2004Jun 3, 2014Longood Medicine (Jiangsu) Co., Ltd.Wiper and the preparing method thereof
US20050084842 *Oct 20, 2003Apr 21, 2005O'connor Amanda L.Diagnostic test device and method of using same
US20080119776 *Dec 14, 2004May 22, 2008Zhendong WuWiper and the Preparing Method Thereof
US20110146419 *Feb 10, 2009Jun 23, 2011Gonzalez Bernard ASample acquisition device
US20110179887 *Feb 12, 2009Jul 28, 2011Cobian Paul JSample acquisition device
EP0058008A2 *Jan 26, 1982Aug 18, 1982Canadian Medical Laboratories LimitedDevice for use in the collection and transportation of medical specimens
EP0058008A3 *Jan 26, 1982May 4, 1983Canadian Medical Laboratories LimitedDevice for use in the collection and transportation of medical specimens
EP0155747A1 *Jan 10, 1985Sep 25, 1985Kidde, Inc.Tube culture system
U.S. Classification600/572, 435/810, 435/30, 206/361, 206/572
International ClassificationG01N1/02, A61F13/38, C12M1/30, A61B10/02, A61B10/00
Cooperative ClassificationY10S435/81, A61F13/38, A61B10/0096, G01N2001/028, A61B10/02, C12M33/02, C12M45/22
European ClassificationA61B10/02, C12M1/30