Patents Examined by Randy C. Shay
  • Patent number: 6045579
    Abstract: Method and apparatus for promoting a spinal fusion between neighboring vertebrae. Apparatus may be located within the intervertebral disc space and preferably includes a pair of engaging plates for contacting the vertebrae. An alignment device may be used to alter the vertical distance between the engaging plates to customize the apparatus to fit a given patient. In one embodiment, the alignment device includes a pair of struts having a predetermined height and extending between the engaging plates from an anterior end to a posterior end of the apparatus. In another embodiment, the alignment device includes a rotatable connector and cam pins for adjusting the distance between the engaging plates. The alignment device is preferably adapted to vary the distance between the engaging plates such that the height of the apparatus proximate the anterior end is greater than that proximate the posterior end whereby the natural lordosis of the spine is maintained after the apparatus is installed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2000
    Assignee: Spinal Concepts, Inc.
    Inventors: Stephen H. Hochshuler, Erik J. Wagner, Ralph F. Rashbaum, Richard D. Guyer
  • Patent number: 5984970
    Abstract: An arthroplasty joint assembly for medically and articulately interconnecting first and second opposed end regions of lengthwise adjacent first and second bones. The artificial joint assembly includes a first assembly including external threading extending lengthwise from a generally pointed end of the first assembly for anchoring the first assembly within a cavity of the first bone such that an opposite end of the first assembly extends toward the second bone. The artificial joint assembly also includes a second assembly having external threading extending lengthwise from a generally pointed end of the second assembly for anchoring the second assembly within a cavity in the second bone and such that an opposite end of the second assembly extends toward the first bone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 1996
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1999
    Inventor: Dale G. Bramlet
  • Patent number: 5919230
    Abstract: An intraocular lens implant including a lens optic portion, a haptic portion and a support structure formed with the lens implant. The support structure extending longitudinally along at least a portion of the implant. The intraocular lens can be implanted in the capsular bag or placed in the ciliary sulcus after cataract surgery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 6, 1999
    Inventor: Daniel Louis. Sambursky
  • Patent number: 5919228
    Abstract: A corneal ring for the correction of the refractive power of an eye consists or a part of metal or plastic which is formed into a split ring having at least one turn, or into a ring segment having a diameter of effective diameter matched to the periphery of the cornea of an eye. The ring or ring segment is inserted into a ring channel which is formed with a special instrument in the cornea of the eye and the radius or curvature of the ring or ring segment is subsequently adjusted by a laser beam, or by radiation, or electromagnetic induction, or magnetism to achieve a fine correction of the refractive power of the eye.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 6, 1999
    Inventor: Jurgen Hennig
  • Patent number: 5897590
    Abstract: A dissection glove for forming in a patient a tissue pocket to receive an implantable device. The dissection glove is constructed of an absorbent material formed into at least one recess with an open end for receiving a portion of a surgeon's gloved hand. A retaining mechanism is provided for releasably retaining the dissection glove to a portion of the surgeon's gloved hand. An extraction mechanism is optionally provided for extracting the dissection glove from the tissue pocket. The dissection glove may be constructed from a variety of materials, such as polypropylene nonwoven mesh or calcium alginate gauze. The present invention is also directed to a method of forming a tissue pocket in a patient for receiving an implantable device using the present dissection glove.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 27, 1999
    Assignee: Medtronic, Inc.
    Inventor: Maura G. Donovan
  • Patent number: 5897593
    Abstract: A lordotic implant has a frusto-conical shape with external threads. Prior to placement of the implant, vertebrae are distracted in a manner to provide a desired lordosis between the vertebrae. The pre-distracted vertebrae are then tapped to provide a tapped bore having a geometry matching the conical geometry of the implant. The threaded implant is then placed within the pre-tapped conical bore.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 27, 1999
    Assignee: Sulzer Spine-Tech Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas W. Kohrs, Paul M. Sand
  • Patent number: 5888207
    Abstract: A saddle-type prosthesis for replacement of a hip joint; includes a shank assembly for engagement in a femur, a saddle-shaped head having a seat to form a bearing area for engagement by a portion of a pelvic bone, and a mounting for so coupling the saddle-shaped head to the shank assembly as to permit a pivoting of the saddle-shaped head relative to the shank assembly about at least two predetermined axes for rotation with at least two degrees of freedom wherein one of the predetermined axes is positioned above the bearing area of the saddle-shaped head.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 30, 1999
    Assignees: GMT Gesellschaft fur medizinische Technik mbH, Waldemar Link GmbH & Co. KG
    Inventors: Elmar Nieder, deceased, Arnold Keller
  • Patent number: 5888243
    Abstract: This invention is an intrastromal corneal ring housing comprising at least one outer layer of a physiologically compatible polymer having a low modulus of elasticity, which polymer may be hydratable and may be hydrophilic. The inner portion of the hybird intrastromal corneal ring may be hollow or may contain one or more physiologically compatible polymers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: March 30, 1999
    Assignee: KeraVision, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas A. Silverstrini
  • Patent number: 5865847
    Abstract: A lordotic implant has a frusto-conical shape with external threads. Prior to placement of the implant, vertebrae are distracted in a manner to provide a desired lordosis between the vertebrae. The pre-distracted vertebrae are then tapped to provide a tapped bore having a geometry matching the conical geometry of the implant. The threaded implant is then placed within the pre-tapped conical bore.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1997
    Date of Patent: February 2, 1999
    Assignee: Sulzer Spine-Tech Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas W. Kohrs, Paul M. Sand
  • Patent number: 5860964
    Abstract: A diaper is provided with an adhesive fastening tab of the Y-configuration type which includes a welded joinder at the branching point between the fastening tape and release tape portions of the tab, the welded joinder being free of the diaper. The welded joinder comprises a direct weld between the substrates of the fastening tape and release tape portions of the tab, or welds between each of those two substrates and an intermediate junction substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 19, 1999
    Assignee: Avery Dennison Corporation
    Inventors: J. Willekens, J. Van de Water, F. Coumans, P. Dhondt
  • Patent number: 5855600
    Abstract: A stent is adapted for deployment at a preselected site in a duct within the body of a patient to inhibit the lumen of the duct at that site from narrowing to a point that resists passage through the lumen. The stent is a generally cylindrical open-ended element having a perforated self-supporting sidewall of substantially uniform thickness adapted to be selectively expanded radially when the stent is to be deployed, to engage the wall of the duct and to resist radial contraction under forces exerted on said sidewall by the wall of the duct in the region of the engagement. The sidewall has greater rigidity in the midsection of the length of the cylindrical element and greater flexibility at each end thereof, by virtue of its having a composite design of different patterns, each pattern being a network of interconnected links with openings therebetween that determine the relative rigidity and flexibility of the sidewall along the length of the cylindrical element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 5, 1999
    Assignee: Inflow Dynamics Inc.
    Inventor: Eckhard Alt
  • Patent number: 5855607
    Abstract: An implant for medialization of vocal cords after vocal cord paralysis, to be inserted into an opening of a shield cartilage formed by operation, the implant has an element which is bent from a metal strip and has a central part adapted to abut against a vocal cord and two hook-shaped end regions adapted to engage around edges of a shield cartilage opening, the metal strip having a bend arranged between the central part and at least one of the hook-shaped end regions and adapted to be located between a protective cartilage and the vocal cord after insertion of the implant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: January 5, 1999
    Assignee: Heinz Kunz GmbH Medizintechnik
    Inventor: Gerhard Friedrich
  • Patent number: 5843177
    Abstract: An apparatus for manipulating an annuloplasty ring implantation device during implantation includes an elongated handle having a proximal end for grasping by a surgeon and a distal end. A locking surface is provided adjacent the distal end of the elongated handle. The elongated handle carries an engaging tip which extends distally from the locking surface. A locking key extends radially from the engaging tip. The annuloplasty ring implantation device includes an engaging tip opening formed therein adapted for receiving the engaging tip. A key slot is defined in the implantation device and extends radially from the engaging tip opening. The engaging tip and locking key may be inserted into the device at the engaging tip opening and key slot. The elongated handle is locked to the device by inserting the engaging tip and rotating the handle relative to the device such that the locking key and key slot are not aligned. This causes the device to be locked between the locking key and the locking surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 1, 1998
    Assignee: St. Jude Medical, Inc.
    Inventors: Guy P. Vanney, Kimberly A. Anderson
  • Patent number: 5843187
    Abstract: An intraocular lens, capable of being manipulated by a pulling tool through an limbal incision in the eye, which utilizes a optical portion. The optical portion takes the form of a flexible transparent body. A fixation element is also employed in the present invention for positioning the lens in a interior segment of the eye. The fixation means may consist of at least one appendage which is connected to the optical portion. The optical portion further possesses an engagement zone for permitting the exertion of a force adjacent the optical portion by a pulling tool. The integrity of the optical portion and/or the fixation element is maintained by reinforcement or strengthening of the same against forces exerted by the pulling tool.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 1, 1998
    Inventor: Jon H. Bayers
  • Patent number: 5843160
    Abstract: Expandable intraluminal prostheses for the treatment of aneurysmal disease or occlusive disease at a bifurcation of a vessel, duct, or lumen, e.g, disease at the aorto-iliac bifurcation. Each prosthesis includes three expandable, sleeve sections which are arranged to be located in respective portions of the vessel, duct, or lumen contiguous with the bifurcation, and secured together in situ. The prosthesis for aorto-iliac aneurysmal disease includes a common, stent-supported sleeve section having an expandable outer balloon for engaging and trapping the thrombus in the aneurysmal space in the abdominal aorta, and a pair of stent-supported sleeve limb sections. The limb sections are connected to the common section to provide a passage for blood to flow through the prosthesis. One or more of the limb sections can also include a outer balloon for engaging the thrombus within its associated aneurysmal space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 1, 1998
    Inventor: Valentine J. Rhodes
  • Patent number: 5843183
    Abstract: A trileaflet heart valve includes a generally annular valve body having an interior wall of nominally circular cross-section into which three wedge-shaped projections radially extend to provide three pairs of flanking flat surfaces between which three leaflets are pivotally supported. The valve body has an outwardly flaring upstream entrance end that, together with the configuration of the leaflets, assures streamlined flow and low transvalvular pressure drop. Wing sections extend laterally in both directions at angles between about 30.degree. and 50.degree. from flat central sections of the leaflets to create V-shaped cross-section leaflet bodies having short flat edge sections along the lateral edges of both wing sections that create a wide open central flow passageway. The three leaflets assume an orientation parallel or nearly parallel to the central axis in full open position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 1, 1998
    Inventors: Jack C. Bokros, Jonathan C. Stupka
  • Patent number: 5824095
    Abstract: A joint prosthesis is disclosed with stems affixed to the flexing main body at a natural, angle; with positive flexion and extension stops; and with stress-relieving radii at intersections between the stems and the main body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Assignees: E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, De Puy DuPont Orthopedics
    Inventors: William G. Di Maio, Jr., Michele Staud Marcolongo, Arnold-Peter C. Weiss
  • Patent number: 5824052
    Abstract: An endoprosthesis is provided having at least first and second resilient coiled sheet portions, and an intermediate region comprising a helical articulation. The coiled sheet portions may be of the same or different diameters so as to accommodate a taper in the body lumen, while the helical articulation comprises a mesh portion that provides both flexibility and high radial strength, and which contracts to its delivery profile with relatively few turns. The coiled sheet portions also may be of the same or different lengths, and for very long devices, may be interspersed between a plurality of helical articulation portions. The pitch of the helical articulation may be varied to create a partial telescoping of the helical articulation within one of the first and second coiled sheet portions when in a contracted state. The prosthesis may also be used for treating bifurcated vessels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Assignee: EndoTex Interventional Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Farhad Khosravi, Michael Hogendijk, John Spiridigliozzi
  • Patent number: 5824086
    Abstract: This invention is a pre-formed intrastromal corneal insert. It is made of a physiologically compatible polymer and may be used to adjust corneal curvature and thereby correct vision abnormalities. The insert or segment may also be used to deliver therapeutic or diagnostic agents to the interior of the cornea or of the eye. The insert subtends only a portion of a ring, or "arc", encircling the anterior cornea outside of the cornea's field of view. The invention also includes a procedure for inserting the device into the cornea.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Assignee: KeraVision, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas A. Silvestrini
  • Patent number: 5824072
    Abstract: Implants comprising active agents are employed for introduction into a suprachoroidal space or an avascular region of an eye for therapeutic purposes. The administration of drugs is controlled and maintained for long periods of time, while ensuring the substantial absence of significant levels outside the site of administration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Assignee: Oculex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
    Inventor: Vernon G. Wong