Connect public, paid and private patent data with Google Patents Public Datasets

Bidirectionally flexible segmented tube

Download PDF

Info

Publication number
US3071161A
US3071161A US2944360A US3071161A US 3071161 A US3071161 A US 3071161A US 2944360 A US2944360 A US 2944360A US 3071161 A US3071161 A US 3071161A
Authority
US
Grant status
Grant
Patent type
Prior art keywords
portions
flexible
tube
lines
portion
Prior art date
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.)
Expired - Lifetime
Application number
Inventor
Gustav A Ulrich
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Bausch and Lomb Inc
Original Assignee
Bausch and Lomb Inc
Priority date (The priority date 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 date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Grant date

Links

Images

Classifications

    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F16ENGINEERING ELEMENTS AND UNITS; GENERAL MEASURES FOR PRODUCING AND MAINTAINING EFFECTIVE FUNCTIONING OF MACHINES OR INSTALLATIONS; THERMAL INSULATION IN GENERAL
    • F16LPIPES; JOINTS OR FITTINGS FOR PIPES; SUPPORTS FOR PIPES, CABLES OR PROTECTIVE TUBING; MEANS FOR THERMAL INSULATION IN GENERAL
    • F16L11/00Hoses, i.e. flexible pipes
    • F16L11/04Hoses, i.e. flexible pipes made of rubber or flexible plastics
    • F16L11/12Hoses, i.e. flexible pipes made of rubber or flexible plastics with arrangements for particular purposes, e.g. specially profiled, with protecting layer, heated, electrically conducting
    • F16L11/121Hoses, i.e. flexible pipes made of rubber or flexible plastics with arrangements for particular purposes, e.g. specially profiled, with protecting layer, heated, electrically conducting specially profiled cross sections
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B1/00Instruments for performing medical examinations of the interior of cavities or tubes of the body by visual or photographical inspection, e.g. endoscopes; Illuminating arrangements therefor
    • A61B1/00163Optical arrangements
    • A61B1/00165Optical arrangements with light-conductive means, e.g. fibre optics
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61BDIAGNOSIS; SURGERY; IDENTIFICATION
    • A61B1/00Instruments for performing medical examinations of the interior of cavities or tubes of the body by visual or photographical inspection, e.g. endoscopes; Illuminating arrangements therefor
    • A61B1/005Flexible endoscopes
    • A61B1/0051Flexible endoscopes with controlled bending of insertion part
    • A61B1/0055Constructional details of insertion parts, e.g. vertebral elements
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B25HAND TOOLS; PORTABLE POWER-DRIVEN TOOLS; MANIPULATORS
    • B25JMANIPULATORS; CHAMBERS PROVIDED WITH MANIPULATION DEVICES
    • B25J18/00Arms
    • B25J18/06Arms flexible

Description

G. A. ULRICH 3,071,161

BIDIRECTIONALLY FLEXIBLE SEGMENTED TUBE Filed May 16, 1960 Jan. 1, 1963 o Rum tlllllllllllllllllillllllllllllllllllll Ill!Illllllllllllllflfllllllllllllllllll G USTAV A. ULRICH INVENTOR.

" 8; W .im awzzv ATZDRNEYS United States Patent 3 071 161 BIDIRECTIONALLY FIZEXIBLE SEGMENTED TUBE Gustav A. Ulrich, Rochester, N.Y., assignor to Bausch & Lomb Incorporated, a corporation of New York Filed May 16, 1960, Ser. No. 29,443 3 Claims. (Cl. 138120) This invention relates to an improved flexible tube for use in endoscopic instruments or the like, and, more particularly, to a flexible tube of segmented construction including one portion free to flex in one plane and a second portion for flexing in a different plane.

One object of the present invention is to provide an improved construction for a flexible tube for endoscopes or the like, of the type including two portions for flexing in mutually different planes so that it may be guided into difflcultly accessible body cavities such as the duodenum.

Other objects are: to provide an improved construction for a flexible tube of this character in which a flexing force may be transmitted through a first portion for flexing a second portion without applying undue flexing force to the first portion; to provide an improved device of this character in which mechanical control lines extend through integrally formed guideways in the walls of the individual segments, all of the segments being identical to each other, and selected ones of the lines being independent of flexing of the different portions of the tube; and in general, to provide an improved bi-directionally flexible, segmented tube which is of relatively simple and inexpensive construction, easy to manufacture and assemble, and rugged and long lasting in service.

These and other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of a presently preferred embodiment thereof, taken in conjunction with the drawing wherein:

FIG. 1 is an elevational view, partly in section of an endoscope including a flexible tube according to the invention;

FIG. 2 is an elevational view, on an enlarged scale of a rigid guide segment, which is included in the flexible tube shown in FIG. 1, being disposed between'the tw differently flexing portions thereof;

FIG. 3 is a plan view of the rigid segment shown in FIG. 2; and

FIG. 4 is a cross sectional view taken along the line 4-4 of FIG. 1.

Briefly, the invention contemplates a segmented, articulated tube having at least two longitudinally extending portions arranged in series for flexing in mutually different planes. Tension lines for hingedly securing the segments together and for mechanically operating various difierent portions of the device, as well as for controllably flexing one of the portions of the tube extend longitudinally through the entire length of the tube in separate guideways formed integrally in the individual segments thereof. A special, spirally grooved segment is disposed between the two diflerently flexing portions of the tube for guiding the control lines along a spiral path so that the control lines may be oriented in a rotated relation in one portion with respect to the other portion of the tube.

In this way, certain ones of the control lines may be guided through the length of the tube in positions closely adjacent to the hinge axes between the segments so that flexing of the tube has substantially no effect on them.

The control lines for controllably flexing the one portion of the tube are 90 offset from the hinge connecting points in both portions, so that it might be expected that they would exert a flexing force on both of the portions of the tube. However, in this type of construction, it appears that the flexing force achieved by tensioning the flexing control lines is such that the portion of the tube immediately adjacent to the points of anchorage for the lines flexes first, and substantially one entire portion of the tube may be almost completely flexed without the application of undue flexing force on the other portion, even though the lines are tensioned through the other portion.

Referring now to the drawing, the endoscope illustrated therein includes front and rear elongated flexible portions 10 and 12, respectively, an intermediate cylindrical connector 14 disposed between the flexible portions 10 and 12, an objective assembly (not shown) at the front of the front flexible portion 10, and a control housing 16 secured at the rear of the rear flexible portion 12. The objective assembly is arranged for projecting a light image of the object, or field to be viewed upon the front face of a flexible image transmitting device such as the coherent bundle 18 of glass fibres, which is fitted within the flexible portions 10 and 12 and extends therein from the objective assembly to the control housing 16. A light image transmitted through the fiber bundle 18 may be viewed upon the rear face 20 of the bundle by any convenient viewing device (not shown) such as a low power microscope or other eyepiece.

The flexible portions 10 and 12 are made up of a. plurality of relatively short, articulated tubular segments 22 and 23, all of which are of identical construction. The segments 22 and 23 are urged towards each other by flexible tension members, or hinge lines 24, which extend along opposite sides of the flexible portions 10 and 12 and serve also to align the segments one with another. One face 26 of each segment is tapered to form a diametrically extending pivot ridge 27, which bears against the opposite face 28 of the next segment to provide a fulcrum. The hinge lines 24 extend through guideways 30 in the segment walls, passing through the pivot ridges 27 of the segments, and thereby permitting flexure of the flexible portions 10 and 12 without loss of tension and retaining force.

The segments 22 in the front flexible portion 10 are displaced from the segments 23 in the rear flexible portion 12 so that the front portion 10 flexes perpendicularly to the direction of flexure of the rear portion 12. The hinge lines 24 in the front portion 10 are also 90 displaced from their position in the rear portion 12.

In addition to the hinge lines 24, other control lines 32, 34, and 36 extend through separate guideways 38, 40, and 42 in the segment walls and are retained in the guideways by the elastomeric sheath 56. The lines 32 and 34 may be, for example, tension members for controlling the focus and angular position of the objective assembly at the front end of the front flexible portion 10. The last set of control lines 36, as shown, are flexible tension members for controllably flexing the front portion 10.

It is desirable to maintain the relative positions of the various lines 24, 32, 34, and 36 constant throughout the length of the endoscope so that all of the segments 22 and 23 may be of identical construction, thus minimizing the cost of manufacturing the instrument. Toward this end, in order to maintain the relative positions of the various lines uniform throughout the length of the endoscope, while at the same time providing for differently polarized fiexure of the front and rear portions 10 and 12 respectively, an intermediate connector 14 having spiral guideways 44, 46, 48, and 50 is disposed between the two portions 10 and 12 for positively guiding the lines 24, 32, 34, and 36 through the required 90 displacement.

The guideways 44, 46, 48 and 50 are preferably formed along the natural lines of tension between their angularly displaced entrant and exit ends, so that the lines 24, 32, 34, and 36 will have a natural tendency to remain in the guideways when grey are tensioned.

Preferably, the entrance and exit portions of each guideway are holes formed by drilling, as best shown in FIG. 2, to provide positive retention of the lines at both ends of the guideways. Intermediate portions of the guideways may be formed by milling spiral grooves between the end portions.

The lines are retained within the spiral grooves by an elastomeric sheath 56 which extends over the entire flexible portion of the endoscope.

The intermediate connector 14 thus maintains the desired angular relationship between the two flexible portions and 12 despite tension applied to the various lines 24, 32, 34, and 36, which extend through both of the portions 10 and 12, and which would tend to draw the two portions 10 and 12 into angular alignment with each other. The connector also minimizes friction against the lines 24, 32, 34, and 36, and permits overall simplification of the construction.

Various features of the illustrated endoscope, which are not described in detail herein, are described and claimed in the following co-pending applications of the same assignee:

Gilbert J. Sheldon, Ser. No. 679,566, filed August 22, 1957, entitled Flexible Tube Structures;

Gilbert J. Sheldon, Ser. No. 686,320, filed September 26,1957, entitled Optical Viewing Instrument, now Patent Number 2,975,785;

Gilbert J. Sheldon, Ser, No. 715,820, filed February 17, 1958, entitled Optical System for Endoscopes and the Like, now Patent Number 2,987,960;

Gilbert I. Sheldon, et al., Ser. No. 29,416, filed concurrently herewith, entitled Focusing Endoscope;

Gustav A. Ulrich, Ser. No. 29,255, filed concurrently herewith, entitled Holder for Camera and Viewing Device."

What is claimed is:

1. A flexible tube for an endoscope or the like comprising two elongated flexible portions arranged in series for flexure in mutually different planes, a tension line extending through both of said portions along the side walls thereof, and a guide member between said two portions, an elastomeric sheath encasing said portions and said guide member, said guide member having a spiral guideway for guiding said tension line through an angular displacement between said two portions so that when the respective portions of said line coextensive with said two flexible tube portions are oriented in a rotated relation between said flexible tube portions and said line is tensioned the twisting force exerted by said line upon the tube is resisted by said guide member and the angular displacement between said flexible tube portions remains undisturbed.

2. A flexible tube for an endoscope or the like comprising two flexible portions arranged in series for flexure in mutually dilferent planes, said portions being composed of a plurality of articulated tubular segments, all of said segments being of substantially identical construction and including longitudinally extending guideways in their walls, tension lines extending through said guideways from one of said portions to the other one thereof and lying in corresponding guideways in said two portions, and a guide member disposed between said portions, an elastomeric case receiving said member and said portions of the tube, said guide member having spiral guideways for guiding said lines through an angular displacement between said two portions, the opposite ends of said spiral guideways being aligned respectively with the corresponding longitudinal guideways of said segments of said two portions, whereby the twisting force exerted by said lines when they are tensioned is taken by said guide member without imposing substantial torsional forces between said two flexible portions.

3. A flexible tube for an endoscope or the like comprising two elongated flexible portions arranged in series for flexure in mutually difierent planes, a tension line extending through both of said portions along the side walls thereof, and a guide member between said two portions, an elastomeric sheath enclosing said member and said portions of said tube, said guide member having a spiral guideway for guiding said tension line through an angular displacement between said two portions so that when the respective portions of said line coextensive with said two flexible tube portions are oriented in a rotated relation between said flexible tube portions and said line is tensioned the twisting force exerted by said line upon the tube is resisted by said guide memher and the angular displacement between said flexible tube portions remains undisturbed, said spiral guideway including tubular end portions and an'outwardly opening groove portion intermediate said end portions, said groove portion extending along the natural line of tension between said end portions.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 809,977 OBrien Jan. 16, 1906 1,143,824 Haese June 22, 1915 1,340,818 Brinkman May 18, 1920 2,975,785 Sheldon Mar. 21, 1961

Claims (1)

1. A FLEXIBLE TUBE FOR AN ENDOSCOPE OR THE LIKE COMPRISING TWO ELONGATED FLEXIBLE PORTIONS ARRANGED IN SERIES FOR FLEXTURE IN MUTUALLY DIFFERENT PLANES, A TENSION LINE EXTENDING THROUGH BOTH OF SAID PORTIONS ALONG THE SIDE WALLS THEREOF, AND A GUIDE MEMBER BETWEEN SAID TWO PORTIONS, AN ELASTOMERIC SHEATH ENCASING SAID PORTIONS AND SAID GUIDE MEMBER, SAID GUIDE MEMBER HAVING A SPIRAL GUIDEWAY FOR GUIDING SAID TENSION LINE THROUGH AN ANGULAR DISPLACEMENT BETWEEN SAID TWO PORTIONS SO THAT WHEN THE RESPECTIVE PORTIONS OF SAID LINE COEXTENSIVE WITH SAID TWO FLEXIBLE TUBE PORTIONS ARE ORIENTED IN A ROTATED RELATION BETWEEN SAID FLEXIBLE TUBE PORTIONS AND SAID LINE IS TENSIONED THE TWISTING FORCE EXERTED BY SAID LINE UPON THE TUBE IS RESISTED BY SAID GUIDE MEMBER AND THE ANGULAR DISPLACEMENT BETWEEN SAID FLEXIBLE TUBE PORTIONS REMAINS UNDISTURBED.
US3071161A 1960-05-16 1960-05-16 Bidirectionally flexible segmented tube Expired - Lifetime US3071161A (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US3071161A US3071161A (en) 1960-05-16 1960-05-16 Bidirectionally flexible segmented tube

Applications Claiming Priority (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US3071161A US3071161A (en) 1960-05-16 1960-05-16 Bidirectionally flexible segmented tube

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
US3071161A true US3071161A (en) 1963-01-01

Family

ID=21849021

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US3071161A Expired - Lifetime US3071161A (en) 1960-05-16 1960-05-16 Bidirectionally flexible segmented tube

Country Status (1)

Country Link
US (1) US3071161A (en)

Cited By (63)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3145249A (en) * 1962-01-02 1964-08-18 Bausch & Lomb Endoscope window
US3162214A (en) * 1963-01-16 1964-12-22 American Optical Corp Flexible tubular structures
US3266059A (en) * 1963-06-19 1966-08-16 North American Aviation Inc Prestressed flexible joint for mechanical arms and the like
US3430662A (en) * 1964-09-21 1969-03-04 Stephen Guarnaschelli Flexible segmented tube
US3557780A (en) * 1967-04-20 1971-01-26 Olympus Optical Co Mechanism for controlling flexure of endoscope
US3583393A (en) * 1967-12-26 1971-06-08 Olympus Optical Co Bendable tube assembly
DE1541153B1 (en) * 1966-05-27 1971-06-09 Olympus Optical Co Hose assembly to examine the interior walls of curved bodies
US3598155A (en) * 1967-11-01 1971-08-10 Goodyear Tire & Rubber Flexible member
US3625200A (en) * 1969-08-26 1971-12-07 Us Catheter & Instr Corp Controlled curvable tip member
US3799151A (en) * 1970-12-21 1974-03-26 Olympus Optical Co Controllably bendable tube of an endoscope
US4068088A (en) * 1975-03-20 1978-01-10 Coal Industry (Patents) Limited Underground mine equipment
EP0017016A1 (en) * 1979-03-16 1980-10-15 Robotgruppen HB Flexible arm, particularly a robot arm
WO1984002196A1 (en) * 1982-11-19 1984-06-07 Haduch Judith E Legal Represen Flexible inspection system
US4483326A (en) * 1981-04-21 1984-11-20 Kabushiki Kaisha Medos Kenkyusho Curvature control mechanism in endoscopes
EP0165718A2 (en) * 1984-05-22 1985-12-27 Pilkington Medical Systems Limited (formely Minvade Limited) Endoscopes
US4589410A (en) * 1985-07-15 1986-05-20 Miller Larry S Endotracheal tube
US4643720A (en) * 1986-02-14 1987-02-17 Medi-Tech Drainage catheter
US4726355A (en) * 1986-02-17 1988-02-23 Olympus Optical Co., Ltd. Curvable part device for endoscope devices
US4740195A (en) * 1986-02-14 1988-04-26 Medi-Tech, Incorporated Drainage catheter
US4807370A (en) * 1987-07-06 1989-02-28 Anterior, Inc. Adjustable tube bending pattern device
US5110645A (en) * 1986-10-03 1992-05-05 Olympus Optical Company Ltd. Sheath of articulated tube for endoscope
DE4317914A1 (en) * 1993-05-28 1994-12-01 Haas Carl Gmbh & Co Flexible endoscope tube
US5632432A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-05-27 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5752644A (en) * 1995-07-11 1998-05-19 United States Surgical Corporation Disposable loading unit for surgical stapler
US6648875B2 (en) 2001-05-04 2003-11-18 Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. Means for maintaining tension on a steering tendon in a steerable catheter
US6652506B2 (en) 2001-05-04 2003-11-25 Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. Self-locking handle for steering a single or multiple-profile catheter
US20050020901A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-01-27 Neoguide Systems, Inc., A Delaware Corporation Apparatus and methods for facilitating treatment of tissue via improved delivery of energy based and non-energy based modalities
US6858005B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2005-02-22 Neo Guide Systems, Inc. Tendon-driven endoscope and methods of insertion
USRE38708E1 (en) 1995-07-11 2005-03-01 United States Surgical Corporation Disposable loading unit for surgical stapler
US20050154258A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-07-14 Tartaglia Joseph M. Endoscope with adjacently positioned guiding apparatus
US20050222498A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-10-06 Amir Belson Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US20050251112A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2005-11-10 Danitz David J Articulating mechanism for remote manipulation of a surgical or diagnostic tool
US20050273085A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2005-12-08 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex-hinged links
US20050273084A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2005-12-08 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US20060052664A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2006-03-09 Julian Christopher A Connector device for a controllable instrument
US20060111616A1 (en) * 2004-11-24 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism components and system for easy assembly and disassembly
US20060111615A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating sheath for flexible instruments
US20060111209A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanisms and link systems with torque transmission in remote manipulation of instruments and tools
US20060235457A1 (en) * 2005-04-15 2006-10-19 Amir Belson Instruments having a rigidizable external working channel
US20060258912A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2006-11-16 Amir Belson Activated polymer articulated instruments and methods of insertion
US20070135803A1 (en) * 2005-09-14 2007-06-14 Amir Belson Methods and apparatus for performing transluminal and other procedures
US20070161291A1 (en) * 2005-11-23 2007-07-12 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Non-metallic, multi-strand control cable for steerable instruments
US20070250113A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2007-10-25 Hegeman David E Tool with articulation lock
US20070249901A1 (en) * 2003-03-07 2007-10-25 Ohline Robert M Instrument having radio frequency identification systems and methods for use
US20070270650A1 (en) * 2006-05-19 2007-11-22 Robert Eno Methods and apparatus for displaying three-dimensional orientation of a steerable distal tip of an endoscope
US20070287993A1 (en) * 2006-06-13 2007-12-13 Hinman Cameron D Tool with rotation lock
US20080154288A1 (en) * 2002-01-09 2008-06-26 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Apparatus and method for endoscopic colectomy
US20080255588A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 Hinman Cameron D Tool with multi-state ratcheted end effector
US20080255421A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 David Elias Hegeman Articulating tool with improved tension member system
US20080255608A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 Hinman Cameron D Tool with end effector force limiter
US20080262538A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2008-10-23 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating instrument
US20090216083A1 (en) * 2008-02-25 2009-08-27 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Systems and Methods for Articulating an Elongate Body
US20100041945A1 (en) * 2008-08-18 2010-02-18 Isbell Jr Lewis Instrument with articulation lock
US20110065993A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2011-03-17 Amir Belson Steerable segmented endoscope and method of insertion
WO2011048578A1 (en) * 2009-10-22 2011-04-28 Total S.A. Underwater pipe applied to the exploitation of ocean thermal energy
EP2320262A1 (en) 2009-11-10 2011-05-11 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Inspection device and method for positioning an inspection device
WO2011058008A1 (en) 2009-11-10 2011-05-19 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Inspection device and method for positioning an inspection device
US8419720B1 (en) 2012-02-07 2013-04-16 National Advanced Endoscopy Devices, Incorporated Flexible laparoscopic device
US9161771B2 (en) 2011-05-13 2015-10-20 Intuitive Surgical Operations Inc. Medical instrument with snake wrist structure
US9221179B2 (en) 2009-07-23 2015-12-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism
US9220398B2 (en) 2007-10-11 2015-12-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. System for managing Bowden cables in articulating instruments
US9357984B2 (en) 2013-04-23 2016-06-07 Covidien Lp Constant value gap stabilizer for articulating links
US9737365B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2017-08-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with articulation lock

Citations (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US809977A (en) * 1903-02-02 1906-01-16 Arthur O'brien Flexible pipe.
US1143824A (en) * 1914-12-07 1915-06-22 William C Haese Track-sander spout.
US1340818A (en) * 1916-09-11 1920-05-18 Titeflex Metal Hose Corp Flexible tube
US2975785A (en) * 1957-09-26 1961-03-21 Bausch & Lomb Optical viewing instrument

Patent Citations (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US809977A (en) * 1903-02-02 1906-01-16 Arthur O'brien Flexible pipe.
US1143824A (en) * 1914-12-07 1915-06-22 William C Haese Track-sander spout.
US1340818A (en) * 1916-09-11 1920-05-18 Titeflex Metal Hose Corp Flexible tube
US2975785A (en) * 1957-09-26 1961-03-21 Bausch & Lomb Optical viewing instrument

Cited By (139)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3145249A (en) * 1962-01-02 1964-08-18 Bausch & Lomb Endoscope window
US3162214A (en) * 1963-01-16 1964-12-22 American Optical Corp Flexible tubular structures
US3266059A (en) * 1963-06-19 1966-08-16 North American Aviation Inc Prestressed flexible joint for mechanical arms and the like
US3430662A (en) * 1964-09-21 1969-03-04 Stephen Guarnaschelli Flexible segmented tube
DE1541153B1 (en) * 1966-05-27 1971-06-09 Olympus Optical Co Hose assembly to examine the interior walls of curved bodies
US3557780A (en) * 1967-04-20 1971-01-26 Olympus Optical Co Mechanism for controlling flexure of endoscope
US3598155A (en) * 1967-11-01 1971-08-10 Goodyear Tire & Rubber Flexible member
US3583393A (en) * 1967-12-26 1971-06-08 Olympus Optical Co Bendable tube assembly
US3625200A (en) * 1969-08-26 1971-12-07 Us Catheter & Instr Corp Controlled curvable tip member
US3799151A (en) * 1970-12-21 1974-03-26 Olympus Optical Co Controllably bendable tube of an endoscope
US4068088A (en) * 1975-03-20 1978-01-10 Coal Industry (Patents) Limited Underground mine equipment
EP0017016A1 (en) * 1979-03-16 1980-10-15 Robotgruppen HB Flexible arm, particularly a robot arm
US4483326A (en) * 1981-04-21 1984-11-20 Kabushiki Kaisha Medos Kenkyusho Curvature control mechanism in endoscopes
WO1984002196A1 (en) * 1982-11-19 1984-06-07 Haduch Judith E Legal Represen Flexible inspection system
US4530568A (en) * 1982-11-19 1985-07-23 American Hospital Supply Corporation Flexible optical inspection system
GB2141837A (en) * 1982-11-19 1985-01-03 Haduch Judith E Flexible inspection system
EP0165718A2 (en) * 1984-05-22 1985-12-27 Pilkington Medical Systems Limited (formely Minvade Limited) Endoscopes
EP0165718A3 (en) * 1984-05-22 1986-09-03 Pilkington Medical Systems Limited (formely Minvade Limited) Endoscopes
US4589410A (en) * 1985-07-15 1986-05-20 Miller Larry S Endotracheal tube
US4643720A (en) * 1986-02-14 1987-02-17 Medi-Tech Drainage catheter
US4740195A (en) * 1986-02-14 1988-04-26 Medi-Tech, Incorporated Drainage catheter
US4726355A (en) * 1986-02-17 1988-02-23 Olympus Optical Co., Ltd. Curvable part device for endoscope devices
US5110645A (en) * 1986-10-03 1992-05-05 Olympus Optical Company Ltd. Sheath of articulated tube for endoscope
US4807370A (en) * 1987-07-06 1989-02-28 Anterior, Inc. Adjustable tube bending pattern device
DE4317914A1 (en) * 1993-05-28 1994-12-01 Haas Carl Gmbh & Co Flexible endoscope tube
US5826776A (en) * 1994-12-19 1998-10-27 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5669544A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-09-23 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5673841A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-10-07 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5673840A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-10-07 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5632432A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-05-27 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5692668A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-12-02 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
US5680982A (en) * 1994-12-19 1997-10-28 Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. Surgical instrument
USRE38708E1 (en) 1995-07-11 2005-03-01 United States Surgical Corporation Disposable loading unit for surgical stapler
US5911353A (en) * 1995-07-11 1999-06-15 United States Surgical Corporation Disposable loading unit for surgical stapler
US5752644A (en) * 1995-07-11 1998-05-19 United States Surgical Corporation Disposable loading unit for surgical stapler
US8517923B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2013-08-27 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Apparatus and methods for facilitating treatment of tissue via improved delivery of energy based and non-energy based modalities
US20050020901A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-01-27 Neoguide Systems, Inc., A Delaware Corporation Apparatus and methods for facilitating treatment of tissue via improved delivery of energy based and non-energy based modalities
US6858005B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2005-02-22 Neo Guide Systems, Inc. Tendon-driven endoscope and methods of insertion
US9808140B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2017-11-07 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable segmented endoscope and method of insertion
US20050154258A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-07-14 Tartaglia Joseph M. Endoscope with adjacently positioned guiding apparatus
US20050154261A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-07-14 Ohline Robert M. Tendon-driven endoscope and methods of insertion
US20050222498A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2005-10-06 Amir Belson Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US9427282B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2016-08-30 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Apparatus and methods for facilitating treatment of tissue via improved delivery of energy based and non-energy based modalities
US9138132B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2015-09-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US8888688B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-11-18 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Connector device for a controllable instrument
US20110065993A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2011-03-17 Amir Belson Steerable segmented endoscope and method of insertion
US8845524B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-09-30 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable segmented endoscope and method of insertion
US8834354B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-09-16 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US8827894B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-09-09 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US8721530B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-05-13 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tendon-driven endoscope and methods of use
US8062212B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2011-11-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US20060258912A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2006-11-16 Amir Belson Activated polymer articulated instruments and methods of insertion
US20060052664A1 (en) * 2000-04-03 2006-03-09 Julian Christopher A Connector device for a controllable instrument
US8641602B2 (en) 2000-04-03 2014-02-04 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Steerable endoscope and improved method of insertion
US6652506B2 (en) 2001-05-04 2003-11-25 Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. Self-locking handle for steering a single or multiple-profile catheter
US6648875B2 (en) 2001-05-04 2003-11-18 Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. Means for maintaining tension on a steering tendon in a steerable catheter
US9421016B2 (en) 2002-01-09 2016-08-23 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Apparatus and method for endoscopic colectomy
US8696694B2 (en) 2002-01-09 2014-04-15 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Apparatus and method for endoscopic colectomy
US20080154288A1 (en) * 2002-01-09 2008-06-26 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Apparatus and method for endoscopic colectomy
US8361090B2 (en) 2002-01-09 2013-01-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Apparatus and method for endoscopic colectomy
US8882657B2 (en) 2003-03-07 2014-11-11 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Instrument having radio frequency identification systems and methods for use
US20070249901A1 (en) * 2003-03-07 2007-10-25 Ohline Robert M Instrument having radio frequency identification systems and methods for use
US20070250113A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2007-10-25 Hegeman David E Tool with articulation lock
US9085085B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2015-07-21 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanisms with actuatable elements
US20080262538A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2008-10-23 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating instrument
US9072427B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2015-07-07 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with articulation lock
US9440364B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2016-09-13 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating instrument
US9434077B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2016-09-06 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc Articulating catheters
US7615066B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2009-11-10 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism for remote manipulation of a surgical or diagnostic tool
US20050251112A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2005-11-10 Danitz David J Articulating mechanism for remote manipulation of a surgical or diagnostic tool
US20060094931A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2006-05-04 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism for remote manipulation of a surgical or diagnostic tool
US7682307B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2010-03-23 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism for remote manipulation of a surgical or diagnostic tool
US20100262075A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2010-10-14 Danitz David J Articulating catheters
US9498888B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2016-11-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating instrument
US9550300B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2017-01-24 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating retractors
US20100261964A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2010-10-14 Danitz David J Articulating endoscopes
US9370868B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2016-06-21 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating endoscopes
US20100262180A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2010-10-14 Danitz David J Articulating mechanisms with bifurcating control
US8535347B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2013-09-17 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanisms with bifurcating control
US20100262161A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2010-10-14 Danitz David J Articulating instruments with joystick control
US8100824B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2012-01-24 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with articulation lock
US9737365B2 (en) 2003-05-23 2017-08-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with articulation lock
US20100261971A1 (en) * 2003-05-23 2010-10-14 Danitz David J Articulating retractors
US20050273084A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2005-12-08 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US9861786B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2018-01-09 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex hinged links
US9517326B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2016-12-13 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US8419747B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2013-04-16 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US20100249759A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2010-09-30 Cameron Dale Hinman Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical of diagnostic tools
US7678117B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2010-03-16 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex-hinged links
US20050273085A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2005-12-08 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex-hinged links
US7828808B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2010-11-09 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US20100234831A1 (en) * 2004-06-07 2010-09-16 Hinman Cameron D Articulating mechanism with flex-hinged links
US9095253B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2015-08-04 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex hinged links
US8920429B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2014-12-30 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Link systems and articulation mechanisms for remote manipulation of surgical or diagnostic tools
US8323297B2 (en) 2004-06-07 2012-12-04 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism with flex-hinged links
US20060111209A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanisms and link systems with torque transmission in remote manipulation of instruments and tools
US20110087071A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2011-04-14 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulation sheath for flexible instruments
US9155449B2 (en) 2004-11-23 2015-10-13 Intuitive Surgical Operations Inc. Instrument systems and methods of use
US9700334B2 (en) 2004-11-23 2017-07-11 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanisms and link systems with torque transmission in remote manipulation of instruments and tools
US20060111615A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating sheath for flexible instruments
US7785252B2 (en) 2004-11-23 2010-08-31 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating sheath for flexible instruments
US8277375B2 (en) 2004-11-23 2012-10-02 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Flexible segment system
US20060111210A1 (en) * 2004-11-23 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanisms and link systems with torque transmission in remote manipulation of instruments and tools
US8182417B2 (en) 2004-11-24 2012-05-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism components and system for easy assembly and disassembly
US20060111616A1 (en) * 2004-11-24 2006-05-25 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating mechanism components and system for easy assembly and disassembly
US20060235458A1 (en) * 2005-04-15 2006-10-19 Amir Belson Instruments having an external working channel
US20060235457A1 (en) * 2005-04-15 2006-10-19 Amir Belson Instruments having a rigidizable external working channel
US20070135803A1 (en) * 2005-09-14 2007-06-14 Amir Belson Methods and apparatus for performing transluminal and other procedures
US20070161291A1 (en) * 2005-11-23 2007-07-12 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Non-metallic, multi-strand control cable for steerable instruments
US8083879B2 (en) 2005-11-23 2011-12-27 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Non-metallic, multi-strand control cable for steerable instruments
US20070270650A1 (en) * 2006-05-19 2007-11-22 Robert Eno Methods and apparatus for displaying three-dimensional orientation of a steerable distal tip of an endoscope
US9357901B2 (en) 2006-05-19 2016-06-07 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Methods and apparatus for displaying three-dimensional orientation of a steerable distal tip of an endoscope
US8568299B2 (en) 2006-05-19 2013-10-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Methods and apparatus for displaying three-dimensional orientation of a steerable distal tip of an endoscope
US9561045B2 (en) 2006-06-13 2017-02-07 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with rotation lock
US20070287993A1 (en) * 2006-06-13 2007-12-13 Hinman Cameron D Tool with rotation lock
US20080255421A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 David Elias Hegeman Articulating tool with improved tension member system
WO2008131046A2 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-30 Novare Surgical Systems, Inc. Articulating tool with improved tension member system
WO2008131046A3 (en) * 2007-04-16 2009-05-07 Novare Surgical Systems Inc Articulating tool with improved tension member system
US20080255608A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 Hinman Cameron D Tool with end effector force limiter
US20080255588A1 (en) * 2007-04-16 2008-10-16 Hinman Cameron D Tool with multi-state ratcheted end effector
US7862554B2 (en) 2007-04-16 2011-01-04 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating tool with improved tension member system
US8409244B2 (en) 2007-04-16 2013-04-02 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with end effector force limiter
US8562640B2 (en) 2007-04-16 2013-10-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Tool with multi-state ratcheted end effector
US9220398B2 (en) 2007-10-11 2015-12-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. System for managing Bowden cables in articulating instruments
US20090216083A1 (en) * 2008-02-25 2009-08-27 Neoguide Systems, Inc. Systems and Methods for Articulating an Elongate Body
US8182418B2 (en) 2008-02-25 2012-05-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Systems and methods for articulating an elongate body
US8608647B2 (en) 2008-02-25 2013-12-17 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Systems and methods for articulating an elongate body
US9033960B2 (en) 2008-08-18 2015-05-19 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Instrument with multiple articulation locks
US8465475B2 (en) 2008-08-18 2013-06-18 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Instrument with multiple articulation locks
US20100041945A1 (en) * 2008-08-18 2010-02-18 Isbell Jr Lewis Instrument with articulation lock
US9737298B2 (en) 2008-08-18 2017-08-22 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Instrument with articulation lock
US9221179B2 (en) 2009-07-23 2015-12-29 Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Articulating mechanism
WO2011048578A1 (en) * 2009-10-22 2011-04-28 Total S.A. Underwater pipe applied to the exploitation of ocean thermal energy
WO2011058010A1 (en) 2009-11-10 2011-05-19 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Inspection device and method for positioning an inspection device
WO2011058008A1 (en) 2009-11-10 2011-05-19 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Inspection device and method for positioning an inspection device
EP2320262A1 (en) 2009-11-10 2011-05-11 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Inspection device and method for positioning an inspection device
US9161771B2 (en) 2011-05-13 2015-10-20 Intuitive Surgical Operations Inc. Medical instrument with snake wrist structure
US8419720B1 (en) 2012-02-07 2013-04-16 National Advanced Endoscopy Devices, Incorporated Flexible laparoscopic device
US9357984B2 (en) 2013-04-23 2016-06-07 Covidien Lp Constant value gap stabilizer for articulating links

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
US3434775A (en) Flexible fiber optic borescope
US3091235A (en) Diagnostic instruments
US5919128A (en) Sparse aperture endoscope
US5895350A (en) Electronic endoscope
US4765710A (en) Distributing frame for optical waveguides and the like
US4212514A (en) Connectors for optical conductors utilizing elastomeric pads
US6582357B2 (en) Treating instrument erecting device for use in endoscope
US5002041A (en) Bending device and flexible tube structure
US4580551A (en) Flexible plastic tube for endoscopes and the like
US4646723A (en) Construction of a forward end portion of an endoscope using a heat conductive material
US3190286A (en) Flexible viewing probe for endoscopic use
US4953929A (en) Fiber optic connector assembly and adapter for use therewith
US4264167A (en) Adapter for coupling a camera with a viewing device
US5009487A (en) Prism system for a stereoscopic microscope
US5573493A (en) Endoscope attachment for changing angle of view
US4773395A (en) Endoscope
US5122650A (en) Stereo video endoscope objective lens system
US5868665A (en) Endocoupler system
US3561432A (en) Endoscope
US4708434A (en) Fiberscope with bending mechanism
US4036218A (en) Endoscope
US3166623A (en) Spherical lens imaging device
US20030063867A1 (en) Fiber optic plug
US3096756A (en) Optical bronchoscope
US4059344A (en) Retrofocus-type objective for endoscopes