Patents Examined by David M. Ruddy
  • Patent number: 7079882
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for quantifying nerve and neural-muscular integrity related to pelvic organs or pelvic floor functions. In one embodiment, the invention is a method and device to measure muscle or nerve activity in the pelvis or pelvic floor. In a modification of this embodiment, the invention includes means for inducing an efferent nerve signal in the spinal cord or sacral nerves and then measuring the resulting nerve activity of the nerves of the pelvic floor region. In a preferred embodiment, the invention includes placing a probe in the anal canal or vagina, the probe having proximal recording electrodes along its outer surface. In one possible embodiment, the probe has a distensible sheath having recording electrodes located on its outside surface. In another embodiment, the probe has an inflatable balloon at its distal end with recording electrodes located on the outside surface of the inflatable balloon.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2006
    Inventor: Richard Schmidt
  • Patent number: 6712810
    Abstract: Methods and devices for occlusion of the fallopian tubes of a woman. The method involves thermally damaging the lining of the utero-tubal junction with relatively low power, followed by placement of a reticulated foam plug. In one embodiment, vascularized tissue grows into the plug and prevents or discourages formation of scar tissue around the plug. Another embodiment with a relatively small foam pore size encourages formation of a vascularized capsule around the plug. The presence of this vascularized capsule limits the patient's foreign body response, so that the capsule does not constrict around the plug. Also presented is a catheter designed for wounding the epithelial layer of the utero-tubal junction, and a method of using the catheter to form a long yet shallow lesion in the utero-tubal junction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 30, 2004
    Assignee: Adiana, Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas C. Harrington, Victoria E. Carr-Brendenl, Brett S. Bowman
  • Patent number: 6695838
    Abstract: A method of forming a lesion at a predetermined heart location is provided. An energy-delivering electrode is positioned proximal to the predetermined heart location; a return electrode is positioned in contact with cardiac tissue. An electrosurgical current, capable of delivering energy through the energy-delivering electrode to the predetermined heart location at a magnitude and for a duration effective to form a lesion is established. A system for treating atrial fibrillation by forming transmural lesions and a heart-positioning device including a return electrode are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2004
    Assignee: Ethicon, Inc.
    Inventors: Parris S. Wellman, Rajesh Pendekanti
  • Patent number: 6687524
    Abstract: An ECT, EEG, EMG, ENG or impedance pneumography hospital electrode is designed for use on neonates in high humidity environments, such as in a high humidity incubator. The electrode includes a silver-silver/chloride sensor; a signal transmitting lead connected to the sensor; and an electrically conductive, self-adhesive gel which electrically connects the sensor to the patient's skin. The conductive, self-adhesive gel is formed from a hydrogel which is hydrophilic in nature. In order to stabilize the adhesiveness of the gel in the high humidity environment, the gel is provided with an adjunct non-hydrophilic adhesive member which provides improved adhesion to the skin while maintaining contact between the conductive gel and the patient's skin. The use of the adjunct adhesive member enables the electrode assembly to be used in the high humidity environment for extended periods of time without becoming detached from the patient's skin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 1999
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2004
    Assignee: CAS Medical Systems, INC
    Inventor: Christian A. Svejk
  • Patent number: 6666862
    Abstract: Information indicative of the flow rate of fluid through a biological organ is provided to a processor. Using this information the processor assesses whether the fluid-flow rate is high or low and controls a generator such that the generator provides energy to an electrode positioned within the organ to effect tissue ablation. Energy of a first level is provided during periods of high fluid-flow and energy of a second level, less than the first level, during periods of low fluid-flow. The flow rate information may be provided by an electrocardiograph (ECG) device or a flow sensor. A temperature sensor provides temperature signals to the processor indicative of the electrode temperature. The processor further controls the generator based on the electrode temperature to maintain the temperature at or near a target temperature and below a maximum threshold temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 2001
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2003
    Assignee: Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc.
    Inventors: Mudit K. Jain, Milton M. Morris, Bruce KenKnight
  • Patent number: 6663623
    Abstract: The electric surgical operation apparatus of the present invention easily and securely shortens the rising time until incision and coagulation effects appear even if electrodes having different volumes or surface areas are used for the treatment tool. Cutting sharpness and safety are improved and the operation time is shortened. In the electric surgical operation apparatus, contact of a monopolar electrode of a monopolar treatment tool with organic tissue is detected by a voltage or current sensor. Based on a detection signal therefrom, a high-frequency output is supplied at a predetermined value from a high-frequency cautery power source device, and a high-frequency output is supplied at a higher initial setting value than the predetermined value during an initial period at a rising time. Setting of at least one of the initial period and the initial setting value can be changed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2000
    Date of Patent: December 16, 2003
    Assignee: Olympus Optical Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masahide Oyama, Kenji Harano, Hiroyuki Takahashi, Kazuya Hijii
  • Patent number: 6650921
    Abstract: A lead assembly adapted for endocardial fixation to a human heart is provided. The lead assembly includes a lead body that has a proximal end provided with a connector for electrical connection to a cardiac stimulator. The cardiac stimulator may be a pacemaker, a cardioverter/defibrillator, or a sensing instrument. The distal end of the lead body is connected to a tubular electrode housing. The lead body consists of one or more noncoiled conductor cables surrounded by a coextensive insulating sleeve. Each conductor cable consists of a conducting element covered by a coextensive insulating sleeve. The conducting element may be a single filament wire or a plurality of individual conductor wires. In contrast to conventional leads, the lead body of the present invention does not require coiled conductor wires. Lead body diameters of 1.04 mm or smaller are possible.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2003
    Assignee: Intermedics Inc.
    Inventors: Paul R. Spehr, Elmar R. Fischer, Sr., James E. Machek
  • Patent number: 6640120
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a probe assembly for mapping and ablating pulmonary vein tissue and method of using the same. The probe assembly includes an expandable and collapsible basket assembly having multiple splines. One or more of the splines carry one or more electrodes adapted to sense electrical activity in the pulmonary vein tissue. The basket assembly defines an interior, and a microporous expandable and collapsible body is disposed in the interior of the basket assembly and defines an interior adapted to receive a medium containing ions. An internal electrode is disposed within the interior of the body and is adapted to transmit electrical energy to the medium containing ions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: SciMed Life Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: David K. Swanson, Anant V. Hegde, Anna Hartzog, Alan McMillan, Dennis O'Brien
  • Patent number: 6638275
    Abstract: A transurethral apparatus for radio frequency ablation treatment of the prostate having prostatic tissue of a human male having urethra which extends through the prostate comprising an elongate probe sized so that it is adapted to be introduced into the urethra and having a passageway extending therethrough. The elongate probe has proximal and distal extremities. Proximal and distal pairs of needle electrodes are provided which are carried by the distal extremity of the probe. A control mounted on the proximal extremity of the probe and extends through the passageway and is coupled to the proximal and distal pairs of needle electrodes for movement of the needle electrodes into and out of the prostate. A RF generator is provided for supplying RF energy to the needle electrodes for solely creating bipolar ablation with respect to the proximal and distal pairs of needle electrodes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2003
    Assignee: Medironic, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas H. McGaffigan, Allan O. Mekailian
  • Patent number: 6635053
    Abstract: A cryogenic medical system includes a medical device and a console connectable to the medical device at a connection point. The console controls the temperature of the medical device. The console includes a first cooling system directing coolant to the medical device at a first temperature along a coolant supply line and a second cooling system chilling the coolant within the coolant supply line to a temperature below the first temperature before the coolant reaches the connection point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 21, 2003
    Assignee: CryoCath Technologies Inc.
    Inventors: Jean-Pierre Lalonde, Marwan Abboud, Rachid Mahrouche, Dan Wittenberger
  • Patent number: 6628976
    Abstract: A mapping catheter comprises a catheter body and a mapping assembly. The catheter body has an outer wall, proximal and distal ends, and at least one lumen extending therethrough. The mapping assembly comprises a generally straight proximal region attached to the catheter body, a generally circular main region distal the proximal region having an outer circumference, and a generally straight distal region distal the main region. The mapping assembly also comprises a support member having shape-memory, a non-conductive covering over the support member, and a plurality of electrodes on the non-conductive covering along the generally circular main region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2003
    Assignee: Biosense Webster, Inc.
    Inventors: Kristine B. Fuimaono, Michel Haissaguerre
  • Patent number: 6625481
    Abstract: An electrode assembly adapted to be attached to the skin over selected facial muscle groups picks up signals to be analyzed by an anesthesia adequacy monitor that measures the level of awareness of a living animal, typically a human being. The electrode assembly also includes a stimulator that stimulates a facial nerve to determine the level of paralysis, or neuro muscular block, of the facial muscles. Also disclosed is a method of manufacturing the electrode assembly by printing a pattern of electrically conductive material through a silk-screen or an ink type process onto a flexible layer, and then coating the result with a non-conducting adhesive except at points corresponding to sensing points for the desired muscle groups. Finally, a method for using such sensing and stimulating devices is shown in determining and maintaining an appropriate level of patient awareness, muscle paralysis, and analgesia under anesthesia.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2003
    Inventors: Henry L. Bennett, Jeffrey R. Cram, Bruce Jay Simon
  • Patent number: 6616661
    Abstract: A surgical device for severing tissue, the surgical device comprising; a first shaft having a first internal lumen and a first slot disposed at a distal end; a clamp slidingly disposed in the first slot between open and closed positions to capture tissue in the first slot, the clamp having a clamping surface disposed at a distal end; at least one electrode for applying RF energy to the tissue captured in the first slot; a cutting blade slidingly disposed in the first slot between open and closed positions, the cutting blade having a cutting edge to sever the tissue; first actuation means for actuating the clamp between the open and closed positions; and second actuation means for actuating the cutting blade between the open and closed positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2003
    Assignee: Ethicon, Inc.
    Inventors: Parris S. Wellman, Kevin S. Weadock, Robert Nering
  • Patent number: 6613057
    Abstract: The invention relates to an epilating device which comprises a housing (1) with an opening (5), after which a rotatable drive shaft (7) is arranged extending parallel to said opening and carrying a series of cooperating pinching elements (9) coupled to the drive shaft in a rotational direction (R). During rotation of the drive shaft, pairs of adjacent pinching elements are periodically pivoted with respect to each other, under the influence of a compression member (81), from a catching position, in which a distance is present between the pinching elements near the opening, into a pinching position, in which the pinching elements contact each other near said opening. At least one of the pinching elements of each pair comprises a delaying element (49, 65) for delaying or postponing a pivotal motion of the pinching elements towards the pinching position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2003
    Assignee: Koninklijke Philips Electronics, N.V.
    Inventor: Wolfgang Johannes Obermann
  • Patent number: 6602251
    Abstract: Devices and methods are disclosed for treating a uterine disorder which receive its blood supply from a uterine artery. In particular, uterine fibroids are effectively treated by occluding the uterine arteries using trans-vaginal, trans-uterine, transrectal, or retroperitoneal approaches. The devices and methods are advantageous because the inventive procedures may be performed by a patient's gynecologist in the course of treatment, avoiding the need for referrals to specialist practitioners and for more radical treatments, such as hysterectomies. The methods include both temporary and permanent occlusion of the arteries. A cannula carries an imaging device and a member which will easily penetrate tissue, the member including a device which partially or completely, and temporarily or permanently, occludes a uterine artery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2003
    Assignee: Vascular Control Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Fred Burbank, Michael Jones, Paul Lubock
  • Patent number: 6595989
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an anchor device comprising an elongated tubular body having an expandable member disposed on its distal end portion. The invention also relates to a system adapted to position and anchor the distal end of an ablation device at a location where a pulmonary vein extends from the atrium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2003
    Assignee: Atrionix, Inc.
    Inventor: Alan K. Schaer
  • Patent number: 6592580
    Abstract: An apparatus for the high-frequency treatment of body tissue comprises a head (10) which is provided with at least one HF electrode (14a, 14b, 14c) of an electrically conductive material. Optionally one electrode (14a, 14b) can be brought into contact with the tissue (24) to be treated and electrically activated. In order to avoid undesired temperature peaks provisions are made that the head supporting the HF electrode or the HF electrodes, respectively, comprises highly heat conductive portions (12) in order to dissipate heat generating at the HF electrode or the HF electrodes, respectively, in particular in the proximal direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2003
    Assignee: Stockert GmbH
    Inventor: RĂ¼diger Stockert
  • Patent number: 6592581
    Abstract: A wire housed within a sheath is formed of a shape-retentive and resilient material having a curved shape at its distal-end region resulting in the catheter sheath having the curved shape. The catheter sheath also has an axially oriented tendon for causing deflection of the distal-end region. A movable outer sleeve surrounds the sheath and conforms the portion of the wire positioned within the outer sleeve to the shape of the outer sleeve. Upon relative displacement of the sheath and the outer sleeve a portion of the sheath extends beyond the outer sleeve and resumes its preformed curved distal shape thereby forcing the catheter distal-end region into the same curved shape. The operator may adjust the relative positions of the sheath and outer sleeve to changes the shape of the distal-end region. The operator may also axially move the tendon to adjust the radius or curvature of the distal-end region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2003
    Assignee: Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc.
    Inventor: Wade A. Bowe
  • Patent number: 6592577
    Abstract: A cryogenic medical system includes a medical device and a console connectable to the medical device at a connection point. The console controls the temperature of the medical device. The console includes a first cooling system directing coolant to the medical device at a first temperature along a coolant supply line and a second cooling system chilling the coolant within the coolant supply line to a temperature below the first temperature before the coolant reaches the connection point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2003
    Assignee: CryoCath Technologies Inc.
    Inventors: Marwan Abboud, Rachid Mahrouche, Jean-Pierre Lalonde, Dan Wittenberger
  • Patent number: 6587731
    Abstract: Devices, systems, and method for treating urinary incontinence generally rely on energy delivered to a patient's own pelvic support tissue to selectively contract or shrink at least a portion of that pelvic support tissue so as to reposition the bladder. The energy will preferably be applied to the endopelvic fascia and/or an arcus tendineus fascia pelvis. The invention provides a variety of devices and methods for applying gentle resistive heating of these and other tissues to cause them to contract without imposing significant injury on the surrounding tissue structures. Alternatively, heat-applying probes are configured to heat tissue structures which comprise or support a patient's urethra. By applying sufficient energy over a predetermined time, the tissue can be raised to a temperature which results in contraction without significant necrosis or other tissue damage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2003
    Assignee: SURx, Inc.
    Inventors: Frank Ingle, Garry Carter, Michael D. Laufer