Patents Represented by Attorney Wayne D. House
  • Patent number: 8308749
    Abstract: The present invention is a catheter device that includes a disruptable guidewire channel. The guidewire channel is configured to provide necessary trackability of the catheter along the guidewire during introduction of the catheter to a treatment site. Once treatment is completed, the guidewire channel can then be disrupted so as to free the guidewire from the catheter in situ. The apparatus of the present invention provides distinct advantages over existing over-the-wire and rapid exchange catheter introduction methods, including the ability to achieve much faster treatment implement exchanges, the ability to rapidly deliver multiple treatment implements in series, and the ability to maintain multiple treatment implements simultaneously at a treatment site using a single guidewire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Eric Gerard Johnson, George N. Foutrakis, D H Perkins, Sherif Eskaros
  • Patent number: 8308789
    Abstract: A constraining sheath for use around an endoprosthesis (e.g., a stent device, with or without a graft covering), which may be a balloon expandable endoprosthesis but more preferably is a self-expanding prosthesis. The endoprosthesis is coaxially enclosed within and substantially covered by the constraining sheath, which is an outer, removable tubular sheath, preferably made of ePTFE. The sheath is preferably corrugated circumferentially along at least a portion of the length of the endoprosthesis. The constraining sheath and endoprosthesis are preferably mounted together as an assembly at the distal end of a delivery means such as a catheter shaft, for delivery of the endoprosthesis to a desired location within a body conduit such as an artery. The constraining sheath is removed by the application of tension to a tensile member such as a tether to cause sequential pulling out of the corrugations followed by release and deployment of the endoprosthesis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventor: Joseph R. Armstrong
  • Patent number: 8216396
    Abstract: Articles made of shape memory alloys having improved fatigue performance and to methods of treating articles formed from shape memory alloy materials by pre-straining the articles (or desired portions of the articles) in a controlled manner so that the resultant articles exhibit improved fatigue performance. The shape memory articles are preferably medical devices, more preferably implantable medical devices. They are most preferably devices of nitinol shape memory alloy, most particularly that is superelastic at normal body temperature. The pre-straining method of the present invention as performed on such articles includes the controlled introduction of non-recoverable tensile strains greater than about 0.20% at the surface of a desired portion of a shape memory alloy article. Controlled pre-straining operations are performed on the shape-set nitinol metal to achieve non-recoverable tensile strain greater than about 0.20% at or near the surface of selected regions in the nitinol metal article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Bret A. Dooley, Christopher C. Lasley, Michael R. Mitchell, Robert R. Steele, Eric M. Tittelbaugh
  • Patent number: 8216294
    Abstract: The present invention is a catheter device that includes a disruptable guidewire channel. The guidewire channel is configured to provide necessary trackability of the catheter along the guidewire during introduction of the catheter to a treatment site. Once treatment is completed, the guidewire channel can then be disrupted so as to free the guidewire from the catheter in situ. The apparatus of the present invention provides distinct advantages over existing over-the-wire and rapid exchange catheter introduction methods, including the ability to achieve much faster treatment implement exchanges, the ability to rapidly deliver multiple treatment implements in series, and the ability to maintain multiple treatment implements simultaneously at a treatment site using a single guidewire.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Eric G. Johnson, George N. Foutrakis, D H Perkins
  • Patent number: 8177927
    Abstract: A method of making articles made of shape memory alloys having improved fatigue performance and to methods of treating articles formed from shape memory alloy materials by pre-straining the articles (or desired portions of the articles) in a controlled manner so that the resultant articles exhibit improved fatigue performance. The shape memory articles are preferably medical devices, more preferably implantable medical devices. They are most preferably devices of nitinol shape memory alloy, most particularly that is superelastic at normal body temperature. The pre-straining method of the present invention as performed on such articles includes the controlled introduction of non-recoverable tensile strains greater than about 0.20% at the surface of a desired portion of a shape memory alloy article. Controlled pre-straining operations are performed on the shape-set nitinol metal to achieve non-recoverable tensile strain greater than about 0.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Bret A. Dooley, Christopher C. Lasley, Michael R. Mitchell, Robert R. Steele, Eric M. Tittelbaugh
  • Patent number: 8177832
    Abstract: An endoprosthesis expansion system having, in combination, a delivery component such as a length of catheter tubing having at its distal end an intermediate sheath component, and an inner tube within the full length of the delivery catheter and intermediate sheath component. The inner tube has a protrusion affixed to its distal end, and an expandable endoprosthesis is fitted in a compacted state about the intermediate sheath, immediately proximal to the protrusion. If the endoprosthesis is a self-expanding endoprosthesis (as is preferred), an exterior constraining sheath is required around the outer surface of the endoprosthesis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph R. Armstrong, Edward H. Cully, Craig T. Nordhausen, Mark J. Ulm, Michael J. Vonesh
  • Patent number: 8048440
    Abstract: A medical device provided with at least a partial surface coating of a thermoplastic copolymer of tetrafluoroethylene and perfluoroalkylvinylether that is free of cross-linking monomers and curing agents. The fluoropolymer coating is preferably an amorphous thermoplastic, is highly inert and biocompatible, has elastomeric characteristics that provide desirable mechanical properties such as good flexibility and durability. These characteristics allow the coating to be considered “functionally transparent” because it withstands mechanical deformations required for the assembly, deployment, expansion, and placement of medical devices, without any adverse effect on the mechanical and biological functionality of the coated device. Further, its inertness, derived from the perfluorocarbon structure, contributes to its functionally transparent nature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2011
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: James W. Chang, Robert L. Cleek, Edward H. Cully, Michael J. Vonesh
  • Patent number: 8029563
    Abstract: A prosthetic implantable device that offers a reduction in fluid loss when the device is punctured, such as by a dialysis needle or suture needle, and the needle is subsequently removed. The device may be made to be thin and flexible, and with longitudinal stretch, in order that it also offers good handling and kink resistance to a surgeon. While the device is preferably of tubular form, flat sheets or other forms may also be made. The device includes inner and outer layers of a porous material having a microstructure of nodes interconnected by bent fibrils, and having void spaces between adjacent bent fibrils. The inner and outer layers are joined by an elastomeric adhesive that may interpenetrate the void spaces of the adjacent surfaces of the inner and outer layers, that is, the inner surface of the outer layer and the outer surface of the inner layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2011
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Wayne D. House, Edward H. Cully, Daniel B. Pond
  • Patent number: 8016752
    Abstract: A catheter provided with a guidewire catheter lumen having a thin covering that is easily punctured by a guidewire at virtually any desired point along the catheter length. The thin covering may be integral with the catheter shaft, or may be a separate component that covers only the portion of the catheter shaft immediately adjacent the outer portion of the guidewire lumen, or may be a thin tubular construct that surrounds the entire catheter shaft. The covering is preferably relatively translucent, allowing for good visualization of the location of the end of the guidewire to enable puncturing of the covering at the desired location along the length of the catheter shaft. The covering is also preferably tear resistant at puncture sites. The catheter shaft is preferably made of a material having a color that provides good visibility against an operating field, and more preferably is phosphorescent either entirely or in part.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 2003
    Date of Patent: September 13, 2011
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph R. Armstrong, Edward H. Cully, Keith M. Flury, Michael J. Vonesh
  • Patent number: 8003180
    Abstract: A thin-wall PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) tube in the form of a tube of porous expanded PTFE film wherein the porous PTFE film has a microstructure containing a multiplicity of fibrils oriented substantially parallel to each other. The tube has a wall thickness of less than about 0.25 mm and is made from at least one first layer and at least one second layer of porous PTFE film, wherein the fibrils of the first and second layers are oriented substantially perpendicular to each other. Preferably the fibrils of the at least one first layer are oriented substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis of the tube and the fibrils of the at least one second layer of porous PTFE film are oriented substantially circumferential to the tube. The first and second layers may be inner and outer layers respectively, or alternatively their relationship may be reversed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 23, 2011
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Donald G. M. Goffena, David J. Myers
  • Patent number: 7914568
    Abstract: A stent-graft which is particularly useful for applications in biliary ducts. An expandable stent is provided with a covering of a material which is substantially impervious to body fluids and tissue ingrowth and has an increased resistance to bacterial attachment due to its lack of porosity and reduced surface texture. A preferred covering is porous PTFE film rendered substantially non-porous by a coating of a polymeric material such as FEP. The resulting stent has a thin wall for minimum pre-deployment diameter and for minimum interference with fluid flow through the device after implantation. It has good flexibility, allowing its use in curved ducts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2011
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Edward H Cully, Erin B Hutchinson, Michael C Nilson, Ricardo A Rivera
  • Patent number: 7811393
    Abstract: Articles made of shape memory alloys having improved fatigue performance and to methods of treating articles formed from shape memory alloy materials by pre-straining the articles (or desired portions of the articles) in a controlled manner so that the resultant articles exhibit improved fatigue performance. The shape memory articles are preferably medical devices, more preferably implantable medical devices. They are most preferably devices of nitinol shape memory alloy, most particularly that is superelastic at normal body temperature. The pre-straining method of the present invention as performed on such articles includes the controlled introduction of non-recoverable tensile strains greater than about 0.20% at the surface of a desired portion of a shape memory alloy article. Controlled pre-straining operations are performed on the shape-set nitinol metal to achieve non-recoverable tensile strain greater than about 0.20% at or near the surface of selected regions in the nitinol metal article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 12, 2010
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Bret A. Dooley, Christopher C. Lasley, Michael R. Mitchell, Robert R. Steele, Eric M. Tittelbaugh
  • Patent number: 7789979
    Abstract: Articles made of shape memory alloys having improved fatigue performance and to methods of treating articles formed from shape memory alloy materials by pre-straining the articles (or desired portions of the articles) in a controlled manner so that the resultant articles exhibit improved fatigue performance. The shape memory articles are preferably medical devices, more preferably implantable medical devices. They are most preferably devices of nitinol shape memory alloy, most particularly that is superelastic at normal body temperature. The pre-straining method of the present invention as performed on such articles includes the controlled introduction of non-recoverable tensile strains greater than about 0.20% at the surface of a desired portion of a shape memory alloy article. Controlled pre-straining operations are performed on the shape-set nitinol metal to achieve nonrecoverable tensile strain greater than about 0.20% at or near the surface of selected regions in the nitinol metal article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2003
    Date of Patent: September 7, 2010
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Bret A. Dooley, Christopher C. Lasley, Michael R. Mitchell, Robert R. Steele, Eric M. Tittelbaugh
  • Patent number: 7691141
    Abstract: A method of making an tubular intraluminal graft in the form of a tubular diametrically adjustable stent having a tubular covering of porous expanded polytetrafluoroethylene which is less than 0.10 mm thick. The covering may be on the exterior surface of the stent, or on the interior surface of the stent, or both. The covering may be affixed to the stent by an adhesive which is preferably fluorinated ethylene propylene.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 6, 2010
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: James D. Lewis, David J. Myers, Wayne D. House
  • Patent number: 7547304
    Abstract: A catheter for use with a guidewire, the catheter having a distal tip that centers the guidewire even when the catheter is severely bent, thereby avoiding protrusion of the distal tip of the catheter at the outer meridian of the catheter bend and reducing the risk of the catheter tip catching on the luminal surface of the adjacent vasculature. The distal tip of the catheter incorporates at least one guidewire bearing, preferably multiple bearings in the form of longitudinally oriented ribs, which provide the centering characteristic with minimal friction between the inner surface of the catheter distal tip and the outer surface of the guidewire. Preferably, at least four guidewire bearings are provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 16, 2009
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventor: Eric G. Johnson
  • Patent number: 7462675
    Abstract: An improved elastomeric material is described comprising an essentially noncross-linkable amorphous copolymer of tetrafluoroethylene (TFE) and perfluoromethyl vinyl ether (PMVE) which is both a thermoplastic and exhibits exceptional mechanical properties. This material is particularly suitable for use in ultra-clean environments, and particularly for use in an implantable device, since it does not contain contaminants that previous thermoset TFE/PMVE copolymers have required. Among the improved properties of the present invention are excellent biocompatibility, high matrix tensile strength, high clarity, high abrasion resistance, high purity, adequate elasticity, and ease of processing due to the thermoplastic, and noncross-linkable structure of the copolymer. The material of the present invention is also a high strength bonding agent particularly suited for bonding porous PTFE to itself or to other porous substances at room or elevated temperatures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2008
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: James W. Chang, Jack Hegenbarth, Jon P Moseley, Huey Shen Wu
  • Patent number: 7279208
    Abstract: A thin-wall PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) tube in the form of a tube of porous expanded PTFE film wherein the porous PTFE film has a microstructure containing a multiplicity of fibrils. The thin-wall tube is used in a non-porous embodiment as the balloon portion of a balloon catheter. The thin-wall tube is not elastomeric; however, because of the thinness, strength and flexibility of the tube, it may be inserted into a body conduit in a collapsed state and then deployed from a catheter and inflated up to the maximum diameter of the thin-wall tube. The porous PTFE film is provided with a continuous layer of adhesive to provide the non-porous tube; the adhesive is preferably a thermoplastic and more preferably a thermoplastic fluoropolymer such as fluorinated ethylene propylene.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2007
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc
    Inventors: Donald G. M. Goffena, David J. Myers
  • Patent number: 7165795
    Abstract: A device for use in lifting an air conditioning compressor from an air conditioning unit for servicing or replacement of the compressor. The lifting device is also useful for setting a replacement compressor back into place in an air conditioning unit. It simplifies the task of lifting the compressor by allowing the lifting to be performed at a height that reduces risk of bodily injury and thereby allows the task to be more easily performed. The device is usable by either a single person or by two people if the weight of the particular compressor calls for two people.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2007
    Inventor: Columbus H. Williams
  • Patent number: 7049380
    Abstract: An improved elastomeric material is described comprising an essentially noncross-linkable amorphous copolymer of tetrafluoroethylene (TFE) and perfluoromethyl vinyl ether (PMVE) which is both a thermoplastic and exhibits exceptional mechanical properties. This material is particularly suitable for use in ultra-clean environments, and particularly for use in an implantable device, since it does not contain contaminants that previous thermoset TFE/PMVE copolymers have required. Among the improved properties of the present invention are excellent biocompatibility, high matrix tensile strength, high clarity, high abrasion resistance, high purity, adequate elasticity, and ease of processing due to the thermoplastic, and noncross-linkable structure of the copolymer. The material of the present invention is also a high strength bonding agent particularly suited for bonding porous PTFE to itself or to other porous substances at room or elevated temperatures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2006
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: James W. Chang, Jack Hegenbarth, Jon P Moseley, Huey Shen Wu
  • Patent number: 7020529
    Abstract: An implantable electrode provided with a thin, porous, wettable polymeric covering. The electrode covering of the present invention tightly conforms to the external profile of an electrode, which minimizes air gaps and voids. The electrode covering is relatively thin, preferably less than 0.13 mm thick, and is treated to enhance rapid wetting by bodily fluids. The combination of minimal air gaps, tight conformance to the electrode, wettability and porosity of the thin covering, allows repeated, high energy electrical discharges to be transmitted without significant bubble formation, sparking or degradation of the covering. In addition, the electrode covering of the present invention has pore sizes tailored to minimize cellular ingrowth and tissue attachment thereby allowing a less traumatic removal of the electrode after implantation if extraction becomes necessary, for example due to infection or electrode dislodgment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2006
    Assignee: Gore Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Robert C. Krall, Louis J. Smith, Peter J. Zeller