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Surgical instrument organizer

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Publication number
US20060076254A1
US20060076254A1 US11248046 US24804605A US2006076254A1 US 20060076254 A1 US20060076254 A1 US 20060076254A1 US 11248046 US11248046 US 11248046 US 24804605 A US24804605 A US 24804605A US 2006076254 A1 US2006076254 A1 US 2006076254A1
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Prior art keywords
strip
surgical
walls
wall
instrument
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US11248046
Inventor
John Corbitt
Gabrielle Fuller
Bruce Favre
Original Assignee
Corbitt John D Jr
Gabrielle Fuller
Bruce Favre
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B50/00Containers, covers, furniture or holders specially adapted for surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments, e.g. sterile covers
    • A61B50/20Holders specially adapted for surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments
    • A61B50/22Racks
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B50/00Containers, covers, furniture or holders specially adapted for surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments, e.g. sterile covers
    • A61B50/20Holders specially adapted for surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B50/00Containers, covers, furniture or holders specially adapted for surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments, e.g. sterile covers
    • A61B50/30Containers specially adapted for packaging, protecting, dispensing, collecting or disposing of surgical or diagnostic appliances or instruments
    • A61B50/33Trays

Abstract

A surgical instrument organizer for holding surgical instruments on a horizontal surface includes an elongate strip having opposed front and rear walls, end walls, an upper portion, and a lower portion, and a support member in engagement with the strip, the support member in use maintaining the front and rear walls generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface. The upper portion is defined by a plurality of notches, the notches being of a size and shape to receive surgical instruments and maintain them in a propped-up, spaced-apart position. In the preferred embodiment, each of the notches is generally V-shaped, with each notch being about 0.875 inch deep and having side walls that terminate in points spaced about 0.375 inch from each other. Preferably the foam is made of crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin. The support member can be provided in a variety of forms, including spaced stands, an elongate block, and an open-ended surgical tray. It is expected that the strip will be sufficiently inexpensive that it can be discarded after first use.

Description

    REFERENCE TO PRIOR APPLICATION
  • [0001]
    The present application claims priority from, and incorporates by reference, U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 60/617,629 entitled Surgical Instrument Organizer, filed Oct. 12, 2004 by John D. Corbitt, Jr., et al.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0002]
    1. Field of the Invention
  • [0003]
    The present invention relates to the organization of surgical instruments and, more particularly, to a technique for organizing surgical instruments for use during a surgical procedure.
  • [0004]
    2. Description of the Prior Art
  • [0005]
    Surgical instruments that are used during the course of a surgical procedure typically are disposed atop a so-called Mayo stand. In the usual case, a first towel is placed on the stand and a second towel is rolled-up and placed on the first towel. Surgical instruments then can be placed in various places on the first towel. Some instruments such as scissors can be placed atop the rolled-up second towel such that the finger loop portions of the scissors can be elevated. With respect to the instruments that rest atop the second towel, the instruments generally will be positioned parallel or nearly parallel with each other for use by the surgeon.
  • [0006]
    Unfortunately, the foregoing techinque has a number of drawbacks. Because the instruments are loosely placed on the tray, they can be inadvertently moved or knocked off the Mayo stand. As a consequence, the instruments can become unsterile, which requires that they be resterilized or replaced with different sterile instruments. The instruments placed atop the second towel usually will lean against each other, which tends to make it difficult to select a particular instrument for use. Moreover, because the instruments are in contact with each other, it can be difficult to identify and access a desired instrument. Delays or confusion in selecting an instrument during the course of a surgical procedure can be quite undesirable.
  • [0007]
    A number of different approaches have been taken in an attempt to address the foregoing concerns. The following patents disclose various approaches to organizing surgical instruments: U.S. patent application Ser. No. 381,143 to Kimball; U.S. patent application Ser. No. 896,432 to Booth; U.S. Pat. No. 2,018,651 to Bates; U.S. Pat. No. 2,659,485 to Duley, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 2,903,129 to Anderson; U.S. Pat. No. 3,696,920 to Lahay; U.S. Pat. No. 4,011,944 to Cooley, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 4,229,420 to Smith, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 4,501,363 to Isbey; U.S. Pat. No. 4,541,992 to Jerge, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 4,774,063 to Runnells; U.S. Pat. No. 5,046,624 to Murphy, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 5,082,111 to Corbitt, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 5,145,655 to Darlak; U.S. Pat. No. 5,542,533 to Vargas; U.S. Pat. No. 6,345,873 to Kim; U.S. Pat. No. 6,367,637 to Davis, et al; U.S. Pat. No. 6,405,863 to Dhindsa; U.S. Pat. No. 6,426,041 to Smith; and U.S. Pat. No. 6,629,615 to Kim.
  • [0008]
    The referenced patents disclose an approach wherein a surgical instrument organizer has a horizontal member with notches, grooves, or channels along its upper edge for receiving surgical instruments. The patent to Anderson discloses a tray having an upstanding rear wall with notches along its upper edge. The notches are intended to receive surgical instruments for purposes of keeping them organized. The patents to Murphy et al. and Darlak disclose a stand-alone member with open-top compartments 5 (Murphy) or corrugations 30 (Darlak) along its length that can receive surgical instruments for the purpose of keeping them organized.
  • [0009]
    Despite the teachings of the prior art, there remains a need for a surgical instrument organizer that can be used with a Mayo stand. Any such organizer preferably will be inexpensive, will hold instruments securely, and will permit instruments to be identified and accessed quickly.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0010]
    In response to the foregoing concerns, the present invention provides a new and improved surgical instrument organizer. The surgical instrument organizer according to the invention is intended to hold surgical instruments on a horizontal surface. The organizer includes an elongate strip having opposed front and rear walls, end walls, an upper portion, and a lower portion. A support member is in engagement with the strip, the support member in use maintaining the front and rear walls generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface.
  • [0011]
    The upper portion is defined by a plurality of notches, the notches being of a size and shape to receive surgical instruments and maintain them in a propped-up, spaced-apart position. In the preferred embodiment, each of the notches is generally V-shaped, with each notch being about 0.875 inch deep and having side walls that terminate in points spaced about 0.375 inch from each other. Preferably the foam is made of crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin. It is expected that the strip will be provided to the user in a sterilized package and will be sufficiently inexpensive that it can be disposed of after use in a surgical procedure.
  • [0012]
    The support member can be provided in a variety of forms, including spaced stands, an elongate block, and an open-ended surgical tray. Preferably, the stands include channels that receive and interact with channels formed in the lower portion of the strip. For maximum convenience, the stands are made of the same material as the strip, are provided to the user in a sterilized package, and are intended to be discarded after use in a surgical procedure.
  • [0013]
    If the support member is in the form of an elongate block, the block will include a groove of a size and shape to receive the strip. The block can be made of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious material if continued used is desired, or the block can be made of the same or similar material as the strip is one-time use is desired.
  • [0014]
    When the tray is used as a support member, it preferably has a floor, opposed side walls, and an end wall, the strip being disposed between the side walls and against the end wall. The strip can be held in place against the end wall by a variety of techniques, including a tab extending upwardly from the floor, the tab being spaced from the end wall a distance sufficient to permit the strip to be disposed between the tab and the end wall. The strip also can be held in place by a layer of adhesive disposed along a selected one of the front or rear walls and a removable, non-stick sheet disposed stop the layer of adhesive; upon removal of the non-stick sheet, the adhesive can engage the end wall and hold the strip in place there. It also is possible that the strip can be formed as an integral part of the tray, thereby eliminating the need for a separate end wall for the tray.
  • [0015]
    Due to the particular shape of the notches, it is expected that the surgical instruments will be supported more effectively than was possible with prior devices. If the strip is made of foam such as crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin, the strip will be slightly resilient but with adequate strength to hold the instruments in a desired position. The foregoing and other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from a review of the following description and the accompanying drawings.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0016]
    FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a surgical instrument organizer according to the invention employing a support member in the form of spaced stands, one of which has been removed for clarity of illustration;
  • [0017]
    FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a surgical instrument organizer similar to that of FIG. 1 employing a support member in the form of a block having a groove formed therein;
  • [0018]
    FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a surgical instrument organizer similar to that of FIG. 1 employing a support member in the form of an open-ended surgical tray and showing how a surgical instrument can be supported in use; and
  • [0019]
    FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the surgical instrument organizer shown in FIG. 3.
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
  • [0020]
    Referring now to the drawings, and more particularly to FIG. 1, a surgical instrument organizer according to the invention is indicated by the reference numeral 10. The organizer 10 is especially adapted for use with a Mayo stand or any other structure having a horizontal surface. The organizer 10 includes an elongate strip 12 and a support member in the form of spaced stands 14. It is expected that the strip 12 and the stands 14 will be provided to the user in a sterilized package and will be sufficiently inexpensive that they can be disposed of after use in a surgical procedure.
  • [0021]
    The strip 12 has a front wall 16, a rear wall (not shown), end walls 18 (one of which is shown), an upper portion 20, and a lower portion 22. The upper portion 20 is defined by a plurality of notches 24 having points 26. The strip includes spaced channels 28 in the lower portion 22. Each stand 14 includes a channel 30. The channels 28, 30 are approximately the same size and shape in order to permit the strip 12 and the stands 14 to engage each other securely. Each stand 14 preferably is approximately 1.0 inch high, and the channels 28, 30 are about 0.375 inch wide and about 0.5 inch deep. The orientation of the channels 30 is such that the front wall 16 and the rear wall of the strip 12 are maintained in a position generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface during use.
  • [0022]
    Preferably the strip 12 is formed of a resilient, sterilizable polymer foam. A particularly effective material for the strip 12 is a crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin having a density within the range of about 4.0- 7.4 lb./ft3, a tensile strength of at least about 65 psi, an elongation of at least about 149%, a tear strength of at least about 12.1 lb./in., a 25% compression deflection value of at least about 15.9%, and a compression set at 50% deflection value of no greater than about 16.6%. Such a material is commercially available from Voltek LLC, Lawrence, Mass. 01843 under the trademark MINICEL.
  • [0023]
    It is preferred that each of the notches 24 be generally V-shaped, with each notch 24 being about 0.875 inch deep and having side walls that terminate in points 26 spaced about 0.375 inch from each other. The distance between the front and rear walls (thickness of the strip 12) preferably is approximately 0.5 inch, the distance between the upper and lower portions (height of the strip 12) is approximately 2.25 inches, and the distance between the end walls 18 (length of the strip 12) is approximately 11.625 inches. It will be understood that the foregoing dimensions are of the present preferred embodiment, but that they may be modified by those skilled in the art to suit their particular needs.
  • [0024]
    The notches 24 are designed to hold instruments securely in place to prevent the instruments from becoming disorganized during any procedure. In order to accomplish this function, the notches 24 are V-shaped and relatively deep. Also, the thickness of the strip 12 (the distance between the front and back walls) is great enough to provide support for surgical instruments disposed in the notches 24. Because the sidewalls of the notches 24 are disposed at an angle from the vertical, any instruments that are held by the notches will be slightly inclined from the vertical. It is believed that this orientation of the instruments will permit the instruments to be identified and grasped easier. Because the notches 24 are deep, it is expected that the instruments will not be dislodged in the event that the strip 12, stands 14, or the entire Mayo stand is moved, either purposely or accidently, during the course of a surgical procedure.
  • [0025]
    Referring now to FIG. 2, an alternate embodiment of the invention is indicated by the reference numeral 40. The embodiment 40 employs a strip 42 that is identical to the strip 12 except that the channels 28 are not used. The embodiment 40 includes a support member in the form of a block 44. The block 44 has an upper wall 46, a lower wall (not shown), end walls 48, and a longitudinally extending groove 50 that opens through the end walls 48. The size and shape of the groove 50 is such that the lower portion 22 of the strip 42 will be securely held in place within the groove 50. The configuration of the block 44 is such that the front wall 16 and the rear wall of the strip 42 are maintained in a position generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface during use.
  • [0026]
    The block 44 can be made of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious material such as stainless steel or a plastics material, or it can be made of the same material as that of the strip 42. If the block 44 is made of the former material it is expected that the block 44 can be sterilized and used repeatedly. If the block is made of the latter material, it is expected that the block 44 will be discarded after first use.
  • [0027]
    Referring now to FIGS. 3 and 4, an alternate embodiment of the invention is indicated by the reference numeral 60. In FIG. 3, a surgical instrument indicated in dashed lines is shown in a propped-up position as it would be during the course of a surgical procedure. The embodiment 60 employs a strip 62 that is identical to the strip 42. The embodiment 60 includes a support member in the form of an open-ended tray 64. The tray 64 has a floor 66, side walls 68, an end wall 70, and several tabs 72 that extend upwardly from the floor 66. The tabs are spaced far enough from the end wall 70 that the strip 62 can be held in place against the end wall 70 during use. The configuration of the tray 64 is such that the front wall 16 and the rear wall of the strip 62 are maintained in a position generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface during use.
  • [0028]
    Although the tray 64 can be made of the same or similar material as the strip 62, it is expected that the tray 64 will be made of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious material such as stainless steel or a plastics material. Such a material can be sterilized and reused, if desired.
  • [0029]
    In a variant of the embodiment 60, use of the tabs 72 can be eliminated. In such a case, the strip 62 can be provided with a layer of adhesive material (not shown) on a selected one of the front wall 16 or the rear wall. A removable, non-stick sheet (not shown) can be disposed atop the layer of adhesive. Upon removal of the non-stick sheet, the adhesive can be applied to the end wall 70 such that the strip 62 can be removably adhered to the end wall 70.
  • [0030]
    It also is possible to provide the tray 64 with the strip 62 comprising the end wall 70. In such a case the tray 64 with its integral strip 62 presumably will be discarded after first use, although sterilization and reuse will be possible.
  • [0031]
    As will be apparent from the foregoing description, the present invention provides an inexpensive surgical instrument organizer that permits surgical instruments to be maintained in a propped-up, spaced apart position. Due to the size and shape of the notches and the thickness of the elongate strip, and due to the slight resilience of the preferred foam material, instruments will be held in place securely. As a consequence, the Mayo stand (or the embodiment 60 and its variants) can be moved from place-to-place in the surgical theater without concern for disturbing the arrangement of the instruments. Moreover, because the instruments can be maintained in a well organized manner, the surgeon or an assistant can identify and access any particular instrument without delay.

Claims (20)

1. A surgical instrument organizer for holding surgical instruments on a horizontal surface, comprising:
an elongate strip having opposed front and rear walls, end walls, an upper portion, and a lower portion;
a support member in engagement with the strip, the support member in use maintaining the front and rear walls generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface; and
the upper portion being defined by a plurality of notches, the notches being of a size and shape to receive surgical instruments and maintain them in a propped-up, spaced-apart position.
2. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein each of the notches is generally V-shaped, with each notch being about 0.875 inch deep and having side walls that terminate in points spaced about 0.375 inch from each other.
3. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the distance between the front and rear walls is approximately 0.5 inch.
4. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the distance between the upper and lower portions is approximately 2.25 inches and the distance between the end walls is approximately 11.625 inch.
5. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the strip is formed of a resilient, sterilizable polymer foam.
6. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 5, wherein the foam is made of crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin having a density within the range of about 4.0-7.4 lb./ft3, a tensile strength of at least about 65 psi, an elongation of at least about 149%, a tear strength of at least about 12.1 lb./in., a 25% compression deflection value of at least about 15.9%, and a compression set at 50% deflection value of no greater than about 16.6%.
7. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the support member is in the form of spaced stands to which the strip is connected.
8. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 7, wherein each stand includes an upper portion having a channel therein of a size and shape to receive the lower portion of the strip, and the lower portion of the strip includes a channel of a size and shape to receive the channel of the stand.
9. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 8, wherein each stand is approximately 1.0 inch high, and each channel included as part of the strip and the stands is about 0.375 inch wide and about 0.5 inch deep.
10. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 7, wherein the stands are made of the same material as the strip.
11. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the support member is in the form of an elongate block having upper and lower walls and end walls, the lower wall adapted to be placed on the horizontal surface and the upper wall having a longitudinally extending groove that opens through the end walls, the groove being of a size and shape to receive the lower portion of the strip.
12. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 11, wherein the strip is formed of a resilient, sterilizable polymer foam and the block is made of a material selected from the group consisting of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious substance and the same material as the strip.
13. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 1, wherein the support member is in the form of an open-ended surgical tray having a floor, opposed side walls, and an end wall, the strip being disposed between the side walls and against the end wall.
14. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 13, wherein the tray includes a tab extending upwardly from the floor, the tab being spaced from the end wall of the tray a distance sufficient to permit the strip to be disposed between the tab and the end wall of the tray and retained in place there.
15. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 13, further comprising a layer of adhesive disposed along a selected one of the front or rear walls and a removable, non-stick sheet disposed stop the layer of adhesive, whereby, upon removal of the non-stick sheet, the adhesive can engage the end wall of the tray and hold the strip in place there.
16. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 13, wherein the strip is formed of a resilient, sterilizable polymer foam and the tray is formed of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious substance.
17. A surgical instrument organizer for holding surgical instruments on a horizontal surface, comprising:
an elongate strip formed of a resilient, sterilizable polymer foam having opposed front and rear walls, end walls, an upper portion, and a lower portion, the upper portion being defined by a plurality of notches, the notches being of a size and shape to receive surgical instruments and maintain them in a propped-up, spaced-apart position;
each of the notches being generally V-shaped, with each notch being about 0.875 inch deep and having side walls that terminate in points spaced about 0.375 inch from each other, the distance between the front and rear walls is approximately 0.5 inch, the distance between the upper and lower portions is approximately 2.25 inches, and the distance between the end walls is approximately 11.625 inch, and wherein the foam is made of crosslinked, closed-cell polyolefin having a density within the range of about 4.0-7.4 lb./ft3, a tensile strength of at least about 65 psi, an elongation of at least about 149%, a tear strength of at least about 12.1 lb./in., a 25% compression deflection value of at least about 15.9%, and a compression set at 50% deflection value of no greater than about 16.6%; and
a support member in engagement with the strip, the support member in use maintaining the front and rear surfaces generally perpendicular to the horizontal surface.
18. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 17, wherein the support member is in the form of spaced stands to which the strip is connected, each stand being made of the same material as that of the strip, each stand being about 1.0 inch high and including an upper portion having a channel therein of a size and shape to receive the lower portion of the strip, and the lower portion of the strip includes a channel of a size and shape to receive the stand.
19. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 17, wherein the support member is in the form of an elongate block having upper and lower walls and end walls, the lower wall adapted to be placed on the horizontal surface and the upper wall having a longitudinally extending groove that opens through the end walls, the groove being of a size and shape to receive the lower portion of the strip, the block being made of a material selected from the group consisting of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious substance and the same material as the strip.
20. The surgical instrument organizer of claim 17, wherein the support member is in the form of an open-ended surgical tray formed of a sterilizable, rigid, fluid-impervious substance having a floor, opposed side walls, and an end wall, the strip being disposed between the side walls and against the end wall of the tray and held in place against the end wall of the tray by structure selected from the group consisting of a tab extending upwardly from the floor, the tab being spaced from the end wall of the tray a distance sufficient to permit the strip to be disposed between the tab and the end wall of the tray, and a layer of adhesive disposed along a selected one of the front or rear walls, the adhesive being engageable with the end wall of the tray.
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US20070007339A1 (en) * 2005-07-04 2007-01-11 Cyril De Uthemann Process for storing and sorting surgical instruments
US20100217246A1 (en) * 2009-02-20 2010-08-26 Nichols-Reeves Enterprises, Llc Surgical Instrument Holder
US20110240577A1 (en) * 2010-03-31 2011-10-06 Sylvia Jones Apparatus configured to support surgical instruments
US20110266178A1 (en) * 2010-04-30 2011-11-03 Frank Pinal Autoclavable Medical Instrument Case For Reduced Instrument Corrosion
US8162156B1 (en) * 2009-06-29 2012-04-24 Bruce Crisman Implement holder and methods of use
US20150129522A1 (en) * 2013-11-14 2015-05-14 Spencer D. Werden Lay Flat Toothbrush Holder

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US20070007339A1 (en) * 2005-07-04 2007-01-11 Cyril De Uthemann Process for storing and sorting surgical instruments
US20100217246A1 (en) * 2009-02-20 2010-08-26 Nichols-Reeves Enterprises, Llc Surgical Instrument Holder
US8997985B2 (en) 2009-02-20 2015-04-07 Nichols-Reeves Enterprises, Llc Surgical instrument holder
US8511468B2 (en) * 2009-02-20 2013-08-20 Nichols-Reeves Enterprises, Llc Surgical instrument holder
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US8505748B2 (en) * 2010-03-31 2013-08-13 Sylvia Jones Apparatus configured to support surgical instruments
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US20110266178A1 (en) * 2010-04-30 2011-11-03 Frank Pinal Autoclavable Medical Instrument Case For Reduced Instrument Corrosion
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