US 3121427 A
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Feb. 18, 1964 J. M. MOSIER 3,121,427
E 0R. Fig. 3. Jack M. MOSIER BY XMM4MM Arron/v rs Feb. 18, 1964 J. M. MOSIER CATAMENIAL APPLIANCE AND COMPOSITION 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed June 13, 1960 INVENTOR. JAck M. MOSIER XWMJMWM Fig. 10.
ATrore/vm s United States Patent 3,121,427 CATAMENIAL APPLIANCE AND COMPOSITION Jack M. Mosier, 4228 Broadmoor Drive NE, Albuquerque, N. Mex. Filed June 13, 1960, Ser. No. 35,590 6 Claims. (Cl. 128-284) The present invention relates to c-atamenial appliances such as sanitary napkins and vaginal tampons.
Presently available sanitary napkins or pads comprise absorbent cellulosic substances formed in a rectangular shape and surrounded by gauze extending beyond each end of the pad for attachment anteriorly and posteriorly to a sanitary belt consisting of a waist band carrying suitable attachment means. Such napkins are centered over the vulva with the attaching gauze extending anteriorly to a waist band and posteriorly over the anus between the buttocks to the waist band. In order to prevent leakage of menstrual secretion, the wearer pulls each of the gauze attachments very tightly whereby the napkin and associated gauze is drawn very tightly into the crotch.
Such conventional cellulosic pads are capable of rapid absorption of large amounts of fluid; however, they have little retaining powers and the absorbed fluid is very easily squeezed out of the cellulose material. Thus, as the wearer moves causing the thighs to squeeze the pad, the absorbed fluid is exuded producing undesirable stainmg.
it is, therefore, a primary object of the present invention to provide a sanitary napkin which releases relatively little menstrual fluid when compressed.
in order to eliminate the problem of releasing menstrual fluid under pressure, present day sanitary napkins are manufactured in fairly large sizes. Such large sizes are undesirable because of discomfort to the wearer and because they may produce an undesirable appearance in tight fitting clothes. Furthermore, when such large pads are flushed down conventional toilets, they frequently clog up the plumbing.
It is, therefore, a further object of the present invention to provide a sanitary napkin incorporating greatly improved absorbing means thus allowing the napkin to have a much smaller size.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a sanitary napkin capable of being flushed down a toilet without clogging the plumbing.
A further object of the invention is to provide a sanitary napkin which is comfortable and not irritating.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide an improved catamenial appliance.
Further objects of the invention are to provide an improved vaginal tampon; to provide a vaginal tampon which inhibits the release of menstrual fiuid under increased pressure from the vaginal walls; to provide a vaginal tampon incorporating means for preventing undesired sliding out of the vaginal cavity; to provide a vaginal tampon which is not rigid after insertion but rather is pliable and adjusts itself to the vaginal shape so as to be comfortable and prevent leakage, and to provide a vaginal tampon which allows less leakage upon removal.
Related objects and advantages will become apparent as the description proceeds.
In accordance with the present invention, there is provided a catamenial appliance comprising a material capable of absorbing menses by osmosis and of forming a gel therewith, and means for supporting said material in the vaginal area.
The full nature of the invention will be understood from the accompanying drawings and the following description and claims.
FIG. 1 is a plan view of a sanitary napkin and holder embodying the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a portion of the female body showing the napkin and holder of FIG. 1 in proper position.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view of the napkin and holder of FIG. 1 showing it in position over the vulvar area.
FIG. 4 is a plan view of a sheet of material forming a portion of a vaginal tampon embodying the present invention.
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a tampon formed from the material of FIG. 4 showing the tampon prior to the drawing of its ends together.
FIG. 6 is a sectional view of the vagina showing the tampon upon initial insertion.
FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6 showing the tampon after it has absorbed a substantial amount of menstrual fluid.
FIG. 8 is a plan view of a sheet of material forming a portion of an alternative tampon.
FIG. 9 is a plan view of the tampon of FIG. 8 showing it in a partially assembled condition.
FIG. 10 is a perspective View of the tampon of FIG. 8 showing it in completely assembled condition.
Referring now more particularly to the drawings, there is illustrated a sanitary napkin and bolder arrangement 19 comprising a generally rectangular, somewhat elongated section 11 of cloth, plastic or similar material having loops 12 of elastic material secured thereto at the opposite longitudinal edges 15 thereof. In the embodiment illustrated, the loops are closed and sewn to the edges 15 so as to extend along those edges. The transverse edges 16 and 17 of the rectangular section 11 of cloth have elastic sewn thereto so as to cause the rectangular section of cloth to cup around a sanitary napkin or pad 18 formed of layers of absorbent material as is conventionally used for sanitary napkins.
The sanitary napkin 18 is detachably secured to the section 11 by means of conventional snap fasteners 20 and 21, the female portions of the respective fasteners being mounted on the reactangular section 11. It should be noted that the female portion of the snap fastener 21 is located closer to the rearward edge 17 of the section than the female portion of the snap fastener 20 is located to the forward edge 16 of the section of material. Because the male portions are spaced generally equally from the ends of the sanitary napkin, the loops 12 join the section 11 closer to the rearward end of the sanitary napkin than to the forward end thereof. Because the loops and snaps are so proportioned and arranged, the napkin 18 when in position (FIG. 3) covers only the forward portion of the perineum and does not cover the rectum.
In place of the snap fasteners 20 and 21, one snap fastener or even other fastening means might the used. For example, there is a commercially available fastening means comprising a pair of nylon tapes, one having a decoy surface and the other a burr surface. When these surfaces are placed together, they adhere producing an excellent fastening means. One such burr section of nylon tape might be secured to the holder at the forward end thereof and each pad would have a decoy section of tape secured thereto at the forward end thereof to quickly indicate the forward portion of the pad to the user.
The napkin 18 is stitched on the napkin face 25 which is away from the section 11 of cloth to cause a portion of the napkin to extend upwardly away from face 25 forming an elongated fin-like projection 26. This projection 26 is more thoroughly described and claimed in the copending application of Jeanette Elaine J. Mosier for Catamenial Appliance riled on or about May 6, 1960. The projection 26 bears against the wearer acting as an indicating devicegiving confidence to the wearer and assuring her that the napkin is in proper position, yet does not result in the irritation which may result from the conventional tampon or devices extending into the vestibule area between the labia. Whenthe wearer is lying in a horizontal upwardlyfacing position as in sleep, the projection 26provides an effective damming action deterring rearward seepage of fluid and'preventing' soiling of the clothes.
Referring more particularly to' FIGS. 2 and 3, between the legs the female thigh is narrowed at the groove between the lateral margin of the labia majora and the proximal portion of the internal femoral region. Because of the narrowing of the female thigh in this area, the elastic loops 12 may be seated securely to encircle the thighs soas to pass through the above mentioned groove and the gluteal fold, and to extend laterally just above the trochanteric region, ranteriorly across the subinguinal regions just above the medial termination of the inguinal ligament and again to said groove. When the holder and napkin of the present invention are so received on the female form, they are comfortable and cause little or no skin chafing and irritation.
Centrally located at the face 25 of the napkin just below the outer gauze layeris a small liquid permeable container 27 which may be formed of folded tissue paper or the like. Received within the container 27 is approximately cc. of a special absorbing material described in detail below. This absorbing material in a preferred embodiment consists of 28% gelatin, 17% agar-agar and 55% common sugar by volume and all in granular form and in a simple mechanicalmixture forming a random matrix.
This mixture has the ability to absorb many times its volume of bloodor other liquid and to retain the blood in a gel form. Since the absorption is by osmosis rather than capillarity (as in a conventional completely cellulose napkin), the blood is retained in the mixture in gel form and does not leak therefrom even though the'mixture is subjected to high pressure. With the gelatin mixture incorporated in the sanitary napkin, the menses is absorbed to form a cohesive'hemoglobin-gelatin-water complex in gel form which localizes the menses andgreatly resists leakage of the menses from the napkin even though subjected to a severe queezing action by the thighs.
It should be noted that the menstrual secretion contains an anti-clotting agent which prevents the above mentioned gel from being in any sense a blood clot. For this reason and because the gelatin passes into a sol form in large amounts of Water, the used napkin of the present invention may beplaced in atoilet bowl where the hemoglobin-gelatin-water complex will go into solution. Be cause of the high absorptive and retaining powers of the special absorbing material of the present invention, the napkin 18 may have a much smaller size and may contain a much smaller amount of cellulose material than conventional napkins and may be easily flushed down a toilet Without clogging plumbing. The agar-agar within the mixture, while not as good a gel forming substance as gelatin itself, has a heavier specific gravity and tends to prevent floating of the used napkin in the bowl.
It should be understood that the gel-forming mixture of the present invention need not necessarily be placed in the napkin 18 within a tissue paper container such as the container 27. For example, the mixture might be distributed uniformly throughout the complete napkin. Various alternative gel forming mixtures can be used in place of the above described preferred mixture and are described in detail below following a description of the tampon of the present invention.
Referring to FIGS. 4-7, there is illustrated an elongated sheet 39 of gauze or similar liquid permeable material. Portions 3 1'(totaling approximately 5 cc.) of the special absorbing mixture described above are placed toward each end of the sheet of gauze in the areas 33 of sheet 30' and the longitudinal edges 32 of the sheet are sewn together as illustrated in FIG. 5 carefully maintaining the absorbent mixture in the areas 33 and out of central portion 35 of the sheet. The end portions 36 of the sheet are folded over and secured together by the string 37 (which forms a pull string for the tampon) as shown in MG. 6 and the central portion 35 is folded at 40 as shown in FIG. 6. The resulting tampon 42 may be inserted in the vagina -41 by means of a conventional commercially available cardboard tube device which will retain the tampon in the condition and shape shown in FIG. 6 until it is received in the vagina.
Because of the fact that the gel-forming mixture 31 is granular in form, the tampon 42; is pliable and adapts itself to theshape of the vagina. Also the folded central portion 35 having no mixture therein forms a means for retaining the tampon in the vagina because it allows the upper end of the tampon to expand to the shape illustrated in FIG. 7 forming a wedge retaining the tampon in the vaginal cavity.
Referring to FIGS. 8-10, there is illustrated a sheet 45 ofgauze or similar liquid permeable material which has a somewhat less elongated shape than the sheet 30 of FIGS. 4-7. A portion 46 of the above described special absorbing mixture is placed centrallyl upon the sheet 45 and the sheet is folded along the dotted lines 47 into the shape of FIG. 9. The ends 50 of the sheet are then tied together by a string 51 which also functions as a pull string for the finished tampon 52 illustrated in FIG. 10. This tampon functions similarly to the tampon 4-2 above described.
The special absorbing material which fills the container 27 in the napkin or which is received within the tampons 42 and 52. is made up of an amount of a watersoluble carbohydrate and an amount of gel-forming material. The gel-forming material is customarily agaragar and a proteinaceous substance suchas gelatin or other derived proteins (split protein), galactosans or h'emicelluloses and the like and can be present in the special absorbing composition in an amount varying from about 30% to about 75 by volume. The water-soluble carbohydrate, which is present in the special absorbing composition in an amount varying from 25% to 70% volume, is preferably sucrose although other disaccharides such as maltose, lactose and fructose, monosaccharides such as glucose as well as water-soluble higher saccharides can also'be used.
The special absorbing composition useful in the devices of'this invention can be prepared by thoroughly mixing a water solution of the gel-forming substance and a water solution of the carbohydrate, each solution containing the desired amount ofeach substance, andthen evaporating the water therefrom until a solid residue is formed. This residue is a matrix comprised of the gel-forming substance and the carbohydrate. It can be ground, with cooling if necessary, to give an easily handled powder useful for inclusion in the novel devices of this invention. Preferably, however, the water-soluble gel-forming substance and the water-soluble carbohydrate can be employed in the form of a simple mechanical mixture forming a random matrix. For example, using gelatin and sucrose for illustrative purposes only, from 30% to 75% by volume of granular gelatin is mixed with 25% to 70% by volume of granular sucrose and from 4 to 6 cc. of the mixture is enclosed in the cellulose package 2'7 and the package placed in the sanitary naqkin as illustrated. Alternatively, from 4 to 6 cc. of the mixture are mixed with an inert fibrous material and the consequent mixture used as a filler for a tampon.
In the special absorbent composition useful in the devices of this invention, the gel-forming substance or principle is chiefly responsible for the absorption of menstural fluids, the water soluble carbohydrate being present as an inert non-absorbing substance whose function is to maintain the maximum amount of surface of the gel-forming substance available for the absorption of fluids. For example, when a matrix of gel-forming substance and carbohydrate is formed prior to the incorporation of the mixture into a cata-menial device, the more rapid solubility of the carbohydrate component causes it to dissolve out of the preformed matrix, thus continually exposing fresh absorbing surfaces of the gel-forming component or" the matrix. Likewise, when a simple mixture of the gelforming substance and carbohydrate is used as the primary absorbing substance in a catamenial device, the first fluid to contact the mixture causes the formation of a gummy gelatinous mass or matrix of the gelatinous mass. Further fluid causes the more readily soluble carbohydrate component to dissolve, thus making available openings in the newly formed gelatinous mass through which the menstrual fluid can pass to contact and thus be absorbed by yet unused gel-forming substance. It will, of course, be obvious to those skilled in the art that other Water-soluble materials, as for example, salts such as sodium chloride can replace the water soluble carbohydrate in forming matrices with gel-forming materials as set forth above. Of course, any cuts or scratches might be irritated by sodium chloride.
The chief advantage of using a Water-soluble gel-forming substance as the primary absorbent in the present novel catamenial devices is the fact that these gel-forming substances absorb water by osmosis and not by capillarity, as in a sponge. Thus, fluid once absorbed by a gel-forming substance cannot be readily expressed therefrom by squeezing. In the more familiar catamenial devices, the capillary absorption of a sponge-like fibrous material is relied upon to absorb slufied menstrual fluids. Pressure, as of the thighs upon a sanitary napkin while running, walking or sitting, can of course squeeze the absorbed menstrual fluid right back out of the spongy fiber since it is held only by capillary action. Pressure upon a catamenial device of the type provided by this invention, in which menstrual fluid is absorbed by osmosis in a gel-forming substance, will not squeeze out the absorbed fiuid, a fact which provides a distinct advantage for the novel devices of this invention over those of the prior art.
The following are further specific examples of the invention:
Example 1 55 parts of sucrose, 28 parts of gelatin and 17 parts of agar-agar, all by volume, are thoroughly mixed. About 48 cc. of the mixture is placed in a cotton bag, the open end of which is then sealed, and the sealed bag incorporated into a sanitary napkin as previously set forth.
Example 2 Alternatively, 4 cc. of the above mixture are mixed with 2 cc. of compressed cellulose fiber and the resulting mixture is used to fill a tampon as previously set forth.
From the above description, it can be seen that the present invention comprises an improved catamenial appliance which eliminates or reduces the undesirable squeezing out of fluid from the appliance as a result of the movement of the thighs. It can also be appreciated that the present invention provides an improved sanitary napkin which is capable of being flushed down a toilet without clogging plumbing. Furthermore, the present invention provides an improved vaginal tampon incorporating means for preventing undesired sliding out of the vaginal cavity and which is pliable and sel fadjusting to the vaginal shape so as to be comfortable and prevent leakage.
While the invention has been illustrated and described in detail in the drawings and foregoing description, the same is to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, it being understood that only the preferred embodiment has been shown and described and that all changes and modifications that come within the spirit of the invention and the scope of the claims are also desired to be protected.
The invention claimed is:
1. A catamenial appliance comprising a pad of cellulosic material, a gauze wrapper for said pad surrounding and engaging said pad, a non-toxic material capable of forming a gel with menses received within said wrapper, said material being a random matrix of discrete particles of .vater-dispersible gel-forming substances and watersoluble solutes.
2. A catameniai appliance comprising a pad of cellulosic material, a gauze wrapper for said pad surrounding and engaging said pad, 21 non-toxic material capable of forming a gel with menses received within said wrapper, said material being a random matrix of water-dispersible gel-forming substances and water-soluble solutes, said water-soluble solutes being sufficiently soluble to dissolve away from said gel-forming substance when menses come in contact with said material permitting said menses to move to the interior of said material and leaving said substance to form a gel with said menses.
3. A catamenial appliance comprising a pad or cellulosic material, a gauze Wrapper for said pad surrounding and engaging said pad, a mixture of between 30% to by volume oi gelatin and between 25% to 70% by volume of sucrose received within said wrapper.
4. A oatamenial appliance comprising a pad of cellulosic material, a gauze wrapper for said pad surrounding and engaging said pad, a liquid permeable container carried by said pad beneath said wrapper, a non-toxic random matrix of discrete particles of water-dispersible gelforming substances and water-soluble solutes within said container, said water-soluble solutes being sufliciently soluble to dissolve away from said gel-forming substances when menses come in contact with said material permitting said menses to move to the interior of said material and leaving said substance to form gel with said menses.
5. A vaginal tampon comprising an elongated, menses permeable, tubular container, string securing the opposite ends of the container together and forming a pull string for said tampon, and a non-toxic material capable of absorbing menses by osmosis and of forming a gel therewith received within said container and accessible to menses moving through the walls of said container, said material being located adjacent the ends of said container, the central portion of said container being empty of said material and folded between the material carrying portions of said container whereby said tampon can expand to form a pear shape adapted to resist falling out of the vagina, said material being a random matrix of discrete particles of water-dispersible gel-forming substances and Water-soluble solutes.
6. a catamenial appliance comprising a non-toxic random matrix from 30% to 75% water-dispersible, gelfor-ming substance and 25% to 70% of water-soluble carbohydrate, and an insoluble menses permeable container receiving said material.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,702,530 Williams Feb. 19, 1929 2,137,169 Levey Nov. 15, 1938 2,230,903 Ostenbe-rg Feb. 4, 1941 2,331,271 Gilchrist Oct. 5, 1943 2,340,311 Donovan Feb. 1, 1944 2,899,362 Sieger et al Aug. 11, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 722,629 Great Britain I an. 26, 1955 568,042 Great Britain Mar. 15, 1945 446,404 Great Britain Apr. 29, 1936
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