Patents Examined by Michael Buiz
  • Patent number: 6635063
    Abstract: A surgical inserter is provided which includes (a) a head portion formed with a ring acceptor for accepting a ring of the surgical screw; and (b) a neck portion connected to, or integrally formed with, the head portion. The neck portion is formed with two longitudinal grooves for engaging a folded band of connective tissue therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 21, 2003
    Assignee: T.A.G. Medical Products
    Inventors: Yoram Litwin, Ran Oren
  • Patent number: 6494861
    Abstract: A system for controlling delivery of a physiological fluid internally to a patient from a balloon catheter. The system includes a controller, an inflation-fluid pressurizer for maintaining inflation fluid in an inflation-fluid conduit under pressure, and a physiological-fluid pressurizer for maintaining physiological fluid in a physiological-fluid conduit under pressure. The inflation-fluid pressurizer is connected to receive signals from the controller to cycle pressure in the inflation-fluid conduit between a balloon inflating pressure and a balloon deflating pressure. The physiological-fluid pressurizer is connected to receive signals from the controller to cycle pressure in the physiological-fluid conduit between a fluid delivery pressure and a resting pressure. The controller is programmed to synchronize signals to the inflation-fluid pressurizer with signals to the physiological-fluid pressurizer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2002
    Assignee: Boston Scientific Corporation
    Inventor: Vladimir Tsukernik
  • Patent number: 6482208
    Abstract: A fracture reduction clamp for the reduction of a fractured bone. The fracture reduction clamp is particularly suitable for surgical procedures wherein a bone having a fracture is to be fixated with a fixation apparatus after reduction of the bone with a strap. The fracture reduction clamp includes a bifurcated strap guiding head for contacting and firmly gripping the fractured bone, and a strap retainer disposed between the strap guiding head and a rotatable strap tensioner for retaining the ends of the strap being used to reduce the fractured bone. The strap guiding head can include a retractable spike for enhancing the grip of the fractured bone by the fracture reduction clamp. Rotation of the strap tensioner will tighten or loosen the strap about the fractured bone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 19, 2002
    Assignee: Alliance Orthopedic, Inc.
    Inventors: Jon David Michael Ahrend, Don Maddox Womble
  • Patent number: 6413257
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to one piece connector for connecting angularly misaligned implanted pedicle screws to transverse spinal rods in spinal fixation systems. The body portion includes a bore having an inside diameter and a longitudinal axis, with the longitudinal axis of the bore being positioned perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the leg portion. The leg portion includes a slot placed through a section of the leg portion, along the transverse axis of the leg portion and parallel to the longitudinal axis of the leg portion. The slot intersects the bore of the body portion perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the bore. The slot allows the one piece connector to be securely clamped around a longitudinal spinal rod when a pedicle screw is implanted at variable distances from the longitudinal spinal rod.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2002
    Assignee: Surgical Dynamics, Inc.
    Inventors: Chih-I Lin, David Nichols
  • Patent number: 6406479
    Abstract: A fastener for use in soft tissue repair includes a resorbable polymer or suture core having one or more collagen bands in surrounding relation to the core. The bands are expandable between a dehydrated state for insertion and a hydrated state for healing, and are dimensioned and positioned to bring two sides of a tear into apposition to promote healing of the tear. The fastener insertion method includes driving an elongated tube across the tear, inserting a fastener down the tube until it breaches the tear, and removing the tube, leaving the fastener in position to expand and promote healing of the tear.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2002
    Inventors: Daniel F. Justin, Thomas F. Winters
  • Patent number: 6398798
    Abstract: A catherer system and method are provided including a blunt end assembly with a catheter and a blunt end member. The blunt end member includes jaw sections which have a first position or closed position for locating the blunt end member at the site of the occlusion within the native lumen of the blood vessel and a second position or open position wherein the jaw sections are able to press against the interior walls of the lumen adjacent the occlusion. The assembly includes an actuation member for moving the jaw sections from the closed to the open positions repeatedly resulting in a fracturing of the occlusion. A guide wire may be thread through an internal opening in the catheter and the blunt end member and after fracturing, across the occlusion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2002
    Assignee: LuMend, Inc.
    Inventors: Matthew R. Selmon, Gerald Hansen, Charles Milo
  • Patent number: 6383204
    Abstract: The variable stiffness vasoocclusive coil is given variable stiffness along the length of the coil by selectively heat treating certain segments of a primary or secondary coil. The primary coil can be selectively heat treated to form soft or deformable segments along the length of the coil, and can then be shaped into a secondary shape that is set by a heat treatment process. Distal regions of the coil can also be heat treated to make the distal ends of the coil softer, more deformable, or less traumatic.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2002
    Assignee: Micrus Corporation
    Inventors: David A. Ferrera, Daniel R. Kurz
  • Patent number: 6379373
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus of forming hydrogel systems in situ are provided using a delivery system configured to deliver two or more fluent prepolymer solutions without premature crosslinking. The delivery system comprises separate first and second lumens coupling first and second inlet ports and first and second outlet ports, respectively, and may include a balloon, flexible distal region, mixing chamber or steerable distal end. Multi-component hydrogel systems suitable for use with the inventive methods and apparatus are also described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2002
    Assignee: Confluent Surgical, Inc.
    Inventors: Amarpreet S. Sawhney, John Spiridigliozzi
  • Patent number: 6364871
    Abstract: This invention is a method for sculpturing a laser beam (13) in a predetermined pattern using a device (17) between the laser source (11) and the target (23). The method comprises a series of sequential steps in which at least two regions of the cornea (177) are each exposed to increasingly larger portions of the laser beam (13). In the preferred embodiment, two pairs of complementary regions of the cornea (177) will be sequentially exposed to laser radiation. In each such region, a first part will be exposed to a substantially segmental portion of the beam (13), and then at least another larger substantially segmental portion of the beam (13) in which the larger segmental portion, includes the smaller segmental portion. In the preferred embodiment, the target (23) is the human eye, and the predetermined pattern is intended to shape the eye to treat it for astigmatism, myopia, or hyperopia.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2002
    Assignee: Apollo Vision, Inc.
    Inventors: Nicholas Sotiropoulos, Gregory Berlin, George Rozakis
  • Patent number: 6340360
    Abstract: An implantable infection shield and system for drug delivery in vascular tissue includes a relatively non-biodegradable porous linked fibrous biomaterial which controls and directs cell growth and angiogenesis from adjacent vascular tissue into the implant. Infection shield embodiments stimulate cell growth and angiogenesis from adjacent vascular tissue which effectively blocks passage of pathogenic microorganisms along percutaneously implanted objects. In embodiments for drug delivery, a reservoir of the same biomaterial may contain either (1) a cell culture system enclosed within a porous sealable interior chamber or (2) a biodegradable matrix in which one or more drugs are dispersed. After implantation of a reservoir of the first embodiment in an organism, cultured cells obtain food and oxygen via diffusion in tissue fluid through the porous walls of the interior chamber, while metabolic products, including drugs, diffuse away from the cell culture in an analogous manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 1998
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2002
    Assignee: MED USA
    Inventors: Mark B. Lyles, Charles A. McLaughlin, Glenn A. Halff, William A. Mallow
  • Patent number: 6322578
    Abstract: Microsurgical instruments for performing extremely small-scale, minimally-invasive microsurgery such as thoracoscopic coronary artery bypass grafting. The instruments utilize a symmetrical, forcep-like actuator which provides extremely precise actuation and control of the instrument and which mimics the feel of instruments used in conventional open surgical procedures. The instruments generally include a pair of coaxially arranged shafts, an end-effector at the distal ends of the shafts, and an actuator at the proximal ends of the shafts. The actuator includes a pair of arms pivotally coupled to one of the outer and inner shafts, and a pair of links pivotally coupled at one end to the arms, and at a second end to the other of the shafts. The links are coupled to a proximal portion of the arms to maximize mechanical advantage and reduce interference. The actuator may be easily adapted for either pull-type or push-type actuation, and for either outer shaft or inner shaft translation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2001
    Assignee: Heartport, Inc.
    Inventors: Philip R. Houle, Alex T. Roth, Scott H. Miller
  • Patent number: 6315789
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for anchoring percutaneous devices, e.g., tubes or catheters or leads, extending percutaneously through a percutaneous passageway from the skin of a patient to a subcutaneous location or body cavity or tract or lumen from movement further into the body or retraction out of the body. An implantable anchor comprising an anchor body and a tensioning filament is inserted through the percutaneous passageway and deployed subcutaneously with the anchor body in engagement with body tissue in a manner that inhibits it from being retracted through the passageway. The tensioning filament extends from the anchor body and alongside the percutaneous device body through the percutaneous passageway and tension is applied to it to draw the deployed anchor against subcutaneous body tissue and toward the patients skin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2001
    Inventor: Andrew H. Cragg
  • Patent number: 6309400
    Abstract: A curved ultrasonic blade including a concave top surface, a convex bottom surface and a central ridge running along the concave top surface is described. In a curved blade according to the present invention the blade has a cross section which is substantially trapezoidal. The blade edges may be sharp or blunt and the convex bottom surface has a width of at least two times the width of the central ridge and, preferably, three times the width of the central ridge. A balanced ultrasonic instrument including a curved blade having a trapezoidal cross section is also described. A balanced ultrasonic surgical instrument according to the present invention includes an ultrasonic transmission rod which is connected to the curved blade by a balance portion which includes first and second balance asymmetries designed to compensate for the imbalances induced by asymmetry of the curved blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2001
    Assignee: Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc.
    Inventor: Jean M. Beaupre
  • Patent number: 6309402
    Abstract: A encapsulated stent device for implantation within the vascular system includes a balloon of a balloon catheter formed around and adhered to a wire-like stent so that the outer surface of the device is more regular for delivery through the vascular system without an exterior sheath. The encapsulation securely anchors the stent to the balloon and maintains a low profile for negotiation of tortuous and narrowed vessels. Encapsulation requires placement of the stent over the balloon, placement of a sheath over the stent on the balloon, heating and preferably pressurization of the balloon to cause it to expand around the stent within the sheath, and cooling while preferably maintaining pressure to cause the balloon to adhere to the stent and to set the shape of the expanded balloon. Retainers may be placed at the distal and/or proximal ends of the stent during the encapsulation process, or the balloon material may expand to form retainers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2001
    Assignee: Medtronic Ave, Inc.
    Inventors: Bradley A. Jendersee, Robert D. Lashinski, Michael D. Bonneau
  • Patent number: 6305181
    Abstract: A heat pump in which there are provided two separate but mutually interacting and communicating absorption devices, in which in the evaporator of the first device a liquid is present having a low freezing point such as to be able to operate as a heat pump recovering heat from an external fluid having a temperature even of 0° C. or less.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2001
    Inventor: Roberto Gianfrancesco
  • Patent number: 6302888
    Abstract: A spinal implant assembly is provided which has a stabilizer rod clamped into position within an anchor by means of a sliding closure member including a mating set screw or hook. The exterior faces of the anchor are contoured to optimize interface in the surgical setting. The anchor includes a U-shaped channel having multiple undercut surfaces such as grooves, which mate with flange like projections or “dovetails” of a closure member which is slid in a direction corresponding to the longitudinal axis of the rod. The closure member has on either side a flange mating with opposing recesses formed at the top of the U-shaped channel so as to lock the closure member in place. The set screw has an external hex head for tightening, and a plurality of radically extending prongs which are undercut and which mate with the recesses in the top of the U-shaped channel of the anchor. The hex head sheers at a necked area above the radial collar to provide for a flush surface relative to the closure member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 19, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Interpore Cross International
    Inventors: Philip A. Mellinger, Donald B. Knoth
  • Patent number: 6302883
    Abstract: A bone plate apparatus of the present invention includes a plate having a slot extending between the superior and inferior surfaces of the plate, and a rim extending about the slot which includes an interrupted surface, a fastener including a shaft formed for extension into the bone, a collar coupled to the shaft having an interrupted surface which mates with the interrupted surface of the rim of the slot, and a head coupled to the collar for movement in the slot, and a nut forred to cooperate with the head of the fastener to couple the interrupted surfaces of the fastener and the rim together, thereby locking the head in a fixed position within the slot.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: DePuy Acromed, Inc.
    Inventor: Frank S. Bono
  • Patent number: 6302134
    Abstract: This invention provides methods and apparatus for performing microanalytic and microsynthetic analyses and procedures. Specifically, the invention provides a microsystem platform for use with a micromanipulation device to manipulate the platform by rotation, thereby utilizing the centripetal force resulting from rotation of the platform to motivate fluid movement through microchannels embedded in the microplatform. The microsystem platforms of the invention are also provided having microfluidics components, resistive heating elements, temperature sensing elements, mixing structures, capillary and sacrificial valves, and methods for using these microsystems platforms for performing biological, enzymatic, immunological and chemical assays. An electronic spindle designed rotor capable of transferring electrical signals to and from the microsystem platforms of the invention is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Tecan Boston
    Inventors: Gregory Kellogg, Stephen G. Kieffer-Higgins, Bruce L. Carvalho, Gene A. Davis, John P. Willis, Ted Minior, Laura L. Chapman, Mikayla Kob, Sarah D. Oeltjen, Shari Ommert, Alec Mian
  • Patent number: 6296010
    Abstract: This invention is an automatic shut-off valve and gauge for tires during inflation. Configured as a double stem valve joined either on the outside or inside the rim of the tire. One stem serves as an air valve for inflating tires with a metal or plastic line attached to it extending into the second stem, which is a valve that regulates the air pressure in the tire. Air supplied during inflation of the tire causes a linkage to move and open a vent to the atmosphere which was otherwise closed. A spring loaded valve is designed to open when the air pressure in the tire exceeds the correct operating pressure and to allow excess air to escape to the atmosphere. A retracting and extending indicia is provided on the top of a spring loaded valve to indicate when the tire is properly inflated to a preset pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2001
    Inventor: Gerard Michael DeLauer
  • Patent number: 6287320
    Abstract: The present invention provides a technique for treating diseased portions of tissue lumens by the focal introduction of at least one therapeutic agent at the diseased region. A catheter is positioned in a lumen such that first and second expansile members surround the diseased portion of tissue. The expansile members are expanded to occlude the diseased region and a therapeutic agent is introduced to the occluded diseased region via the catheter. The catheter is allowed to remain in place for a therapeutically effective period of time to allow the therapeutic agent to contact the diseased portion for such a period of time. The catheter arrangement also can be used to occlude a diseased region, remove physiological fluid from the occluded region and subsequently to disrupt the diseased region and/or apply the therapeutic agent. The therapeutic agent can be selected to suppress cell proliferation in the diseased region, and the occluded region can be treated with a medicament to promote vessel healing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2001
    Assignee: Endoluminal Therapeutics, Inc.
    Inventor: Marvin J. Slepian