Aural Protectors (e.g., Ear) Patents (Class 128/864)
  • Patent number: 10325585
    Abstract: Ambient sound is converted into digital signals. A processor performs active noise cancellation and/or a transformation operation that is distinct from the active noise cancellation on the digital signals. The active noise cancellation and the transformation operation transform the digital signals into modified digital signals. The modified digital signals are converted into modified analog signals. The modified analog signals are outputted as audio waves. An interior microphone is configured to output an output signal to the processor in response to receiving the modified analog signals. In response to receiving the output signal from the interior microphone, the processor is configured to determine whether the modified digital signals produce desired audio waves.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2019
    Assignee: Dolby Laboratories Licensing Corporation
    Inventors: Jeffrey Baker, Anthony Parks, Sal Gregory Garcia, Thomas Ezekiel Burgess, Matthew Fumio Yamamoto, Nils Jacob Palmborg, Noah Kraft, Richard Fritz Lanman, III, Daniel C. Wiggins
  • Patent number: 10292811
    Abstract: An expansible ear canal insert for treating TMJ disorders and headaches which acts directly on the TMJ and associated ligament and muscle structures to reduce stress and loads placed on the articulator disc located between the temporal bone and the mandible, as well as supportive muscles and ligaments near the TMJ. The insert is adapted to expand by application of body heat. In the expanded condition, the insert provides support to the TMJ and associated ligament and muscle structures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Inventors: William Coole, Lawrence G. Clayton
  • Patent number: 10284974
    Abstract: Disclosed herein, among other things, are methods and apparatus for mitigating foreign material buildup for hearing assistance device components. The present subject matter includes a hearing assistance device transducer barrier layer configured to resist accumulation and passage of foreign materials. In various embodiments, the barrier layer includes a membrane that is coated with oleophobic and hydrophobic materials, wherein the barrier is acoustically transparent but prevents the accumulation and passage of unwanted materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2019
    Assignee: Starkey Laboratories, Inc.
    Inventors: Farhad Kazemzadeh, Robert Jacoby, Gerald Shamla, Brian Dobson, Richard Huynh, Wei Li Lin
  • Patent number: 10064758
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a method, apparatus and computer program for provision of meteorological data pertaining to a particular atmospheric condition to assist in the timing of a remedy to ameliorate involuntary physical distress caused by a change in the atmospheric condition. The remedy according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention may be an earplug including a body having a first end, a second end and a longitudinal axis extending from the first end to the second end, a bore defined within the body and extending from the first end to the second end along the longitudinal axis of the body, and a pressure regulator positioned within the bore and providing an air flow rate of 3.4×10?6 to 7.8×10?5 cc/sec through the bore.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2018
    Assignee: CIRRUS HEALTHCARE PRODUCTS, LLC
    Inventors: Drew E. O'Connell, Sr., Nicholas A. Petry, Lansing M. Lewis, III, Bradley Dean
  • Patent number: 10045133
    Abstract: A device combining a variable sound attenuator with a hearing device, (such as a hearing aid or tinnitus device) that allows a user to adjust the amount of attenuation of environmental sound in a variable, continuous fashion or in a discrete controlled fashion from zero attenuation to maximum attenuation without removing the device from the ear. The attenuator includes a housing having a passageway, the passageway allowing for sound to pass through the housing and a variable control, the variable control able to control the size of the passageway through the housing and the device including a second passageway for transmitting amplified sound from the hearing device into the ear of the wearer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2018
    Inventors: Natan Bauman, Ralph T. Campagna
  • Patent number: 9980067
    Abstract: A hearing device contains a hearing device housing, which is insertable into an auditory canal of a person wearing the hearing device and which has a through-opening leading to the interior of the hearing device housing. The hearing device has a wax guard which is inserted into the through-opening and serves to protect against dirt, and wax, entering the hearing device housing. The guard contains a filter housing, which carries a filter element. At least one aperture is formed in a peripheral wall of the filter housing, which peripheral wall, in the correct insertion state, faces toward a peripheral wall of the hearing device housing delimiting the through-opening, and, in order to carry way and/or take up dirt, the aperture communicates with at least one hollow space arranged in the hearing device housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Assignee: Sivantos Pte, Ltd.
    Inventor: Theo Dorn
  • Patent number: 9924276
    Abstract: An ear tip apparatus for use with a hearing device is provided and comprises a malleable structure. The malleable structure is sized and configured for placement in an ear canal of a user. The malleable structure is deformable to allow an adjustable venting of the ear canal, thereby minimizing the occlusion effect. Methodology for adjusting a degree of venting of the ear canal is also provided, including the automatic adjustments. Adjusting the degree of venting may be done in response to one or more of detected feedback or an environmental cue.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 26, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: EarLens Corporation
    Inventor: Stuart W. Wenzel
  • Patent number: 9906878
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for transmitting vibrations via an electronic and/or transducer assembly through a tooth or teeth are disclosed herein. The assembly may be attached, adhered, or otherwise embedded into or upon a removable oral appliance to form a hearing aid assembly. Such an oral appliance may be a custom-made device. The electronic and transducer assembly may receive incoming sounds either directly or through a receiver to process and amplify the signals and transmit the processed sounds via a vibrating transducer element coupled to a tooth or other hone structure, such as the maxillary, mandibular, or palatine bone structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2018
    Assignee: SoundMed, LLC
    Inventors: Amir Abolfathi, Vahid Saadat, Loc X. Phan
  • Patent number: 9900714
    Abstract: An intra-oral appliance for transmitting sound via bone conduction and optimized for comfort, safety, speech intelligibility, eating and drinking and extended wear by the user including an actuator to provide bone conduction sound transmission; a transceiver coupled to the actuator to cause the actuator to generate sound; and a first chamber containing the actuator and the transceiver, said first chamber adapted to be coupled to one or more teeth of the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: SoundMed, LLC
    Inventor: Amir A. Abolfathi
  • Patent number: 9854342
    Abstract: An in-ear earphone featuring a housing, an audio output device carried in the housing, a hollow elongated stem formed integral with the housing and a toroidal-shaped ear dome. The stem having a first output end extending therefrom and being audibly coupled at a second input end to the output device. The ear dome integrally formed on the output end of the stem.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 26, 2017
    Assignee: Chicago Custom Acoustics
    Inventors: Stavros Basseas, Russ Schreiner, Sargon Khamo, Rony Michael
  • Patent number: 9781525
    Abstract: An intra-oral appliance for transmitting sound via bone conduction and optimized for comfort, safety, speech intelligibility, eating and drinking and extended wear by the user including an actuator to provide bone conduction sound transmission; a transceiver coupled to the actuator to cause the actuator to generate sound; and a first chamber containing the actuator and the transceiver, said first chamber adapted to be coupled to one or more teeth of the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2017
    Assignee: SoundMed, LLC
    Inventor: Amir A. Abolfathi
  • Patent number: 9769557
    Abstract: A proximity sensing headphone may include a gyroscopic sensor to determine the motion of the headphone structure and a proximity sensor to determine the movement of an external object through a three-dimensional ambient environment. A proximity sensing headphone control circuit determines the relative motion or movement between the headphone structure in the three-dimensional ambient environment and the external object in the three-dimensional ambient environment to determine at least a distance between the headphone structure and the external object and a velocity of the external object through the three-dimensional ambient environment about the headphone structure. The control circuit may provide an alert output if the determined distance between the headphone structure and the external object is less than a defined distance threshold or the velocity of the external object through the three-dimensional ambient environment about the headphone structure exceeds a defined velocity threshold.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 24, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Assignee: INTEL CORPORATION
    Inventors: Suraj Sindia, Meggie Hakim, Robert F. Kwasnick
  • Patent number: 9763832
    Abstract: An earplug for blocking sound can be installed uniformly deep in a person's ear canal and can be easily withdrawn. The earplug includes a foam cylinder (12) and a string (14) extending in a loop from the rear of the cylinder, with opposite front ends (32, 34) of the string loop projecting into the body and held therein as by adhesive (38).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Inventor: Howard S. Leight
  • Patent number: 9737439
    Abstract: A push-in earplug including an elongate core and outer layer is disclosed. The outer layer includes a sound attenuating portion having a first average density and a stem portion having a second average density, and the second average density is greater than the first average density.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: 3M INNOVATIVE PROPERTIES COMPANY
    Inventors: James P. Endle, Jeffrey L. Hamer, Alan R. Seville, Kenneth F. Teeters
  • Patent number: 9615182
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for transmitting vibrations via an electronic and/or transducer assembly through a tooth or teeth are disclosed herein. The assembly may be attached, adhered, or otherwise embedded into or upon a removable oral appliance to form a hearing aid assembly. Such an oral appliance may be a custom-made device. The electronic and transducer assembly may receive incoming sounds either directly or through a receiver to process and amplify the signals and transmit the processed sounds via a vibrating transducer element coupled to a tooth or other bone structure, such as the maxillary, mandibular, or palatine bone structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 4, 2017
    Assignee: SoundMed LLC
    Inventors: Amir A. Abolfathi, Vahid Saadat, Loc X. Phan
  • Patent number: 9521480
    Abstract: An ear attenuator headset that allows a user to adjust the amount of attenuation in a variable, continuous fashion from zero attenuation to maximum attenuation without removing the device from a user's head. The ear attenuator headset includes a passageway, the passageway allowing for sound to pass through the headset and a control element, the control element able to control the amount of sound that passes through the passageway of the ear attenuator headset. The ear attenuator can be used in headsets, headphones, and earbuds where electronic sounds are transmitted and added variable attenuation is also available for the consumer to take advantage of for reduction of the external environmental sounds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2016
    Inventors: Natan Bauman, Ralph T. Campagna
  • Patent number: 9521495
    Abstract: A method of manufacturing an acoustic seal for a CIC hearing aid has the steps of: embedding sacrificial particles of 50 ?m to 250 ?m into a silicone rubber matrix, the concentration and size of the sacrificial particles being selected to achieve a porosity of at least 40%; molding the silicone rubber matrix using a mold and curing the silicone rubber matrix; removing the sacrificial particles from the silicone rubber matrix by leaching out the sacrificial particles in a solvent; and drying the silicone rubber matrix. The seal is to surround at least part of the hearing aid and by selection of the size and/or concentration and/or the distribution of the sacrificial particles, to provide for an acoustic attenuation of at least 20 dB in a frequency range between 200 Hz and 6 kHz, with a compliance of at least 50 mm/N when the hearing aid is inserted into the ear canal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 13, 2016
    Assignee: Sonova AG
    Inventors: Erdal Karamuk, Stuart Wenzel
  • Patent number: 9486365
    Abstract: An earplug includes a sleeve, a resonance tube, and a tip. The sleeve has a plurality of slits, and the resonance tube is connected between the sleeve and the tip. When the sleeve is pressed to deform, the slits are opened to allow sound to enter the sleeve, and pass through the resonance tube and the tip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 8, 2016
    Assignee: Chiun Mai Communication Systems, Inc.
    Inventor: Chuan-Hsien Cheng
  • Patent number: 9414966
    Abstract: An earpad (1) to provide an interface between an earcup (4) of a headset (7), a headphone (8) or an ear defender (9). The earpad (1) comprises a contact surface (2) contacting the skin (10) of the ear (11) or ear surroundings of the user. The earpad (1) comprises one or more metal members (3, 6, 12, 13, 33) to transfer heat away from the contact surface (2).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2016
    Assignee: GN Netcom A/S
    Inventor: Sunny Ji
  • Patent number: 9398370
    Abstract: An intra-oral appliance for transmitting sound via bone conduction and optimized for comfort, safety, speech intelligibility, eating and drinking and extended wear by the user including an actuator to provide bone conduction sound transmission; a transceiver coupled to the actuator to cause the actuator to generate sound; and a first chamber containing the actuator and the transceiver, said first chamber adapted to be coupled to one or more teeth of the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2016
    Assignee: SoundMed, LLC
    Inventor: Amir A. Abolfathi
  • Patent number: 9333116
    Abstract: A sound attenuator that allows a user to adjust the amount of attenuation in a variable, continuous fashion or in a discrete controlled fashion from zero attenuation to maximum attenuation without removing the device from the ear. The ear attenuator includes a housing having a passageway, the passageway allowing for sound to pass through the housing and a variable control, the variable control able to control the size of the passageway through the housing and the amount of attenuating material located within the passageway through the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2016
    Inventors: Natan Bauman, Ralph T. Campagna
  • Patent number: 9265664
    Abstract: An ear plug (1) for a hearing aid is made of a resilient material and provided with an extraction cord (4) for providing a grip by which a user can pull the ear plug (1) out of an ear canal. The extraction cord (4) is arranged partly in the resilient material and partly outside the ear plug. A securing bulge (6) is arranged on the part of the extraction cord arranged in the resilient material, in order to secure the position of the extraction cord in the resilient material. The extraction cord is bonded to the resilient material. The invention further concerns a method for manufacturing the ear plug.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 18, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2016
    Assignee: Widex A/S
    Inventors: Klaus Henrik Vaarbroe, Peter Nordland Jensen
  • Patent number: 9185481
    Abstract: An earpiece is provided containing a thermal activator layer comprised of a first polymer, the thermal activator layer being separated from the tympanic membrane of the user's ear by an air gap, and an acoustical reflector layer, containing a second polymer and pigment particles, adjacent to the thermal activator layer. The earpiece may be produced by sequential introduction of various liquefied components in layers within the ear canal, with the components being cured to provide the thermal activator layer and the acoustical reflector layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 10, 2015
    Assignee: Personics Holdings, LLC
    Inventors: Steven Goldstein, John Patrick Keady, Paul Calvert
  • Patent number: 9078783
    Abstract: A method is disclosed for clearing effusion from an ear. The method may include applying liquid to an ear canal, which is proximal to a perforated tympanic membrane, which is proximal to a middle ear containing effusion, applying an ear device to seal and pressurize the liquid inside the ear canal, the ear device regulating the amount of pressure inside the ear canal, and inducing a Eustachian tube, which is distal to the middle ear, to open, which causes the fluid to displace the effusion into the Eustachian tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2015
    Assignee: Acclarent, Inc.
    Inventors: John H. Morriss, Greg Liu, Rohit Girotra, Tom Thanh Vo, Richard Roy Newhauser, Jr., Thomas Jenkins, Joshua Makower
  • Publication number: 20150068539
    Abstract: A system and method for use in iontophoretic anesthesia of a tympanic membrane are disclosed. The system generally includes an earplug and an electrode device. The earplug includes at least one sealing member for sealing the earplug in an ear canal. The sealing member includes microholes which vent fluid above a certain pressure threshold. A headset may connect the earplug to a second earplug. The method involves using the system on a human or animal subject.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2014
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Inventors: John H. Morriss, Greg Liu, Rohit Girotra, Bernard H. Andreas, Scott J. Baron, Paul G. Hayter, Thomas R. Jenkins, Richard R. Newhauser, JR., Jeffrey A. Walker
  • Publication number: 20150059775
    Abstract: An earplug is provided to prevent the tinnitus, which comprises an earplug body and at least one tube. The earplug body is made from a soft moldable material. The tube is placed inside the earplug body surrounded by the soft moldable material, and having two openings at two ends of the tube, and a diameter of the tube is in a range from 0.03 cm to 0.15 cm. The tube is configured for communicating outside air to maintain the balance of the air pressure, and thus the earplug of the present invention is able to prevent the tinnitus of the user. Further, although the earplug of the present invention blocks most of the external sound, it still allows some thimbleful sound entering through the tube. In this way, the user does not need to worry about losing contact with the outside and remain the ability of noise reduction, so the user may feel more relieved while sleeping.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 6, 2014
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Inventor: Hung-Wen Hung
  • Publication number: 20150047650
    Abstract: An ear tip is disclosed that comprises an annular flange having a first end tapering downwardly to a second end and having a circular lateral cross-section. The annular flange is defined by a plurality of sections and each section has a varying wall thickness. An inner body extends internally from the first end within a hollow interior defined by the annular flange toward the second end. An acoustic channel extends through the inner body, where the annular flange at least partially occludes an ear canal from ambient noise and creates at least a partial air seal in the ear canal and the acoustic channel is configured to allow the passage of sound into the ear canal when the inner body is connected with a sound source.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 14, 2013
    Publication date: February 19, 2015
    Applicant: Klipsch Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Mark A. Blanchard
  • Patent number: 8955519
    Abstract: An earplug insertion device can include a housing that is configured to hold a first earplug and a second earplug. The device can also include an ejection mechanism that can be configured to respond to a first user force by ejecting the first earplug from the device in a first ejection motion. The ejection mechanism can also being configured to respond to a second user force by ejecting the second earplug from the device in a second ejection motion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: J3 Group, LLC
    Inventors: Shawn Matthew Johnson, John Matthew Johnson, Joshua Ingvald Kenneth Johnson
  • Publication number: 20150038849
    Abstract: An in-ear device configured to help a subject manage or reduce pain, discomfort, or other symptoms associated with TMJ disorder. Also disclosed are methods of using optical scanning to create a three dimensional replication of the ear canal that is used to design a customized in-ear device. Also disclosed is a method of helping manage at least one symptom associated with TMD by providing an in-ear device for wear while the subject is awake and providing a bite guard for wear at night while the subject is sleeping.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 2, 2013
    Publication date: February 5, 2015
    Applicant: United Sciences, LLC
    Inventors: Karol Constantine Hatzilias, Mayoor Patel, Wess Eric Sharpe, William Jacob Thompson
  • Patent number: 8931489
    Abstract: Hearing protection devices and kits may include an earplug body and an adjustable sound attenuation assembly composed of an attenuator case and an attenuator insert that is removably insertable into the attenuator case. The attenuator case has a hollow barrel portion that accommodates the attenuator insert and a hollow extension portion connected to the hollow barrel portion. The hollow extension portion includes a soundpath channel therethrough defining a soundpath axis. The attenuator insert is rotatable within the hollow barrel portion of the attenuator case about a rotation axis that is noncollinear with the soundpath axis. The attenuator insert has a thickness along the soundpath axis that varies with respect to a rotation angle of the attenuator insert within the attenuator case. Thereby, sound waves that enter the soundpath channel through the distal opening are attenuated proportionally to the thickness of the attenuator insert along the soundpath axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignee: So Others May Hear, LLC
    Inventor: Jeremiah Smith
  • Patent number: 8852277
    Abstract: A system and method for correcting misshaped ears using a molding device having one or more braces supporting a scaphal mold. The one or more braces and the scaphal mold are adapted to retain the helix and the helical rim of a misshaped ear within a space defined between the one or more braces and the scaphal mold, and to maintain a substantially correct anatomical shape of the helix and the helical rim.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Inventors: Henry Stephenson Byrd, C. Kenneth French, Garrett Barker
  • Publication number: 20140246029
    Abstract: An apparatus and a method of making a corded earplug, including a flexible cord material having a particular cross-section. An earplug having a nose portion for insertion into the ear and a handle portion extending from the nose portion and lying outside of the ear when the nose portion is inserted into the ear. The handle portion including at least two openings physically displaced from each other. At least one of the openings extends within the handle portion and with at least one of the openings having a cross-section different than the cross-section of the cord material. An end portion of the flexible cord material is inserted into the at least one opening extending within the handle portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 8, 2014
    Publication date: September 4, 2014
    Applicant: MOLDEX-METRIC, INC.
    Inventors: Mark Magidson, Crest Turdjian, Fred Ryan
  • Patent number: 8820470
    Abstract: An adjustably attenuating ear plug adapted for use in an ear canal, includes a flexible body, and a valve assembly further comprising a disk and knob translatable relative to the disk, wherein the knob defines at least one inlet, the disk alternately defines at least one shield and hole, and the inlet is alternatively aligned with the hole and shield to varying degrees, so as to selectively and variably expose the canal to the environment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Inventor: Thomas Brown
  • Publication number: 20140216480
    Abstract: A device includes a core, a membrane, at least one first electrode coupled to the core, at least one second electrode coupled to the core or the membrane and a collapsible electroactive polymer element. The collapsible polymer element is configured to extend from or extend around at least a portion of the core where the element is in an expanded configuration without application of a voltage and in a collapsed configuration with the application of the voltage or in a collapsed configuration without application of a voltage and in an expanded configuration with the application of the voltage. The voltage is applied via the at least one first electrode and the at least one second electrode. Other embodiments are disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 7, 2014
    Publication date: August 7, 2014
    Applicant: PERSONICS HOLDINGS, LLC.
    Inventor: John P. Keady
  • Patent number: 8776801
    Abstract: The in-ear device is shaped to fit a wearer's ear morphology. The device includes a main body having at least three generally convex sides, an innermost face and an outermost face. A first side is shaped to fit the tragus of a wearer's ear, and a second side is shaped to fit an antitragus of a wearer's ear. At least three tips, generally rounded, join respective two adjacent sides. The main body is within an outer ear plane substantially perpendicular to an entrance of an ear canal of a wearer's ear.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Sonomax Technologies Inc.
    Inventor: Ian McIntosh
  • Patent number: 8739798
    Abstract: In a hearing protection earplug made of foamed material, provision is made in order to attain a defined attenuation and avoid annoyances caused by self-generated sounds, that the surface of the hearing protection earplug has hollows in the area of the inner end face. The hearing protection earplug includes a main body having a central center longitudinal axis and in the direction of this central center longitudinal axis an axially inner end face and an axially outer end face. In the area of the inner end face, surface area enlarging inner hollows are provided, one of which, in the form of an inner central longitudinal hollow, extends inward longitudinally relative to the center longitudinal axis, starting from the inner end face. Also provided is an outer central longitudinal hollow that extends inward longitudinally relative to the center longitudinal axis, starting from the outer end face.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 3, 2014
    Assignee: Uvex Arbeitsschutz GmbH
    Inventors: Göran Berg, Jörgen Hakannson
  • Patent number: 8733711
    Abstract: The cannula support includes a helical cord flexible along its length to permit selective axial displacement of adjacent coils for insertion of a cannula tube therein and a breathable material that permits prolonged skin contact substantially without irritation. Furthermore, the cannula support includes an exterior surface having a coefficient of friction substantially preventing sliding movement along the length of the cannula tube when mounted thereon.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 27, 2014
    Inventor: Paula Fristoe
  • Publication number: 20140102461
    Abstract: Systems and methods are provided for sealing an ear canal for retaining a solution in the ear canal. Adhesive earplugs are provided through which the solution can be delivered, and which, following delivery, retain the fluid in the ear canal. The systems and methods may also be useful for delivering an anesthetizing solution to the ear canal of a human patient and for maintaining the solution therein for use with an iontophoresis system for anesthetizing the tympanic membrane.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 14, 2013
    Publication date: April 17, 2014
    Applicant: Acclarent, Inc.
    Inventors: Rohit Girotra, Bernard H. Andreas, Alfredo Cantu, Nikhil Bhat, Mansour Saleki, Shrirang V. Ranade, Miranda Ray
  • Patent number: 8679607
    Abstract: A foamable article is disclosed. The article includes a substrate and an outer layer covering at least a portion of the substrate and including an unactivated expandable sphere foaming agent and an unactivated chemical foaming agent. The unactivated foaming agents may be activated to increase the volume of the outer layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Jeffrey L. Hamer, Alan R. Seville, Kenneth F. Teeters
  • Patent number: 8678011
    Abstract: Orifice insertion devices are provided. An orifice insertion device includes a stent and a plurality of sealing elements. Each sealing element is attached to the stent. At least one sealing element includes an expandable section configured to exert a pressure on an ear canal wall to seal an ear canal, without appreciable deformation of the ear canal wall. At least two of the plurality of sealing elements are formed from different materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 25, 2014
    Assignee: Personics Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: Steven Wayne Goldstein, John Patrick Keady
  • Patent number: 8671948
    Abstract: An apparatus and a method of making a corded earplug, including a flexible cord material and a pair of earplugs. Each earplug has a nose portion for insertion into the ear and a rear portion extending from the nose portion and lying outside of the ear when the nose portion is inserted into the ear. Each rear portion has a pair of openings physically displaced from each other and/or angularly displaced from each other. At least one of the openings extends through the rear portion. A short portion of the flexible cord material is inserted through the at least one opening extending through the rear portion. The short portion of the flexible cord material is then inserted into the other opening to have the short portion of the flexible cord material physically displaced and/or angularly displaced along its length to lock the flexible cord material to the rear portion of the earplug.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Assignee: Moldex-Metric, Inc.
    Inventor: Crest Turdjian
  • Patent number: 8671949
    Abstract: A headgear-earwear assembly and a method of assembling the same. The headgear-earwear assembly can include an earwear and a headgear adapted to be coupled together. The earwear can include an elongated member, such as a cord, having a length, and an earpiece coupled to the elongated member. The headgear can include a major surface and a channel oriented substantially along the major surface of the headgear. The channel can be configured to removably house at least a portion of the length of the elongated member. The method can include positioning at least a portion of the elongated member in the channel, such that at least a portion of the length of the elongated member is removably housed in the channel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Glenn D. Oshima, Yuichi Ogawa, Hiroshi Shimatani
  • Publication number: 20140069442
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention is directed to an earplug that includes a cylindrical body having a pair of faces positioned on opposite sides of the cylindrical body, and indicia printed on at least one face of the pair of faces. Other embodiments of the present invention are directed to a method and a system for producing the earplug having indicia thereon. The method includes forming the earplug with the cylindrical body and the pair of faces, and printing the at least one indicia on at least one face of the pair of faces. The system includes an extrusion machine configured to form the earplug, a smoothing roller configured to smooth the earplug, and a printing apparatus configured to print the indicia on the earplug. The earplug is formed silicone comprised of 60-90% vinyl stopped dimethypolysiloxane, 10-30% treated fumed silica and 0.5% or less of a fluoropolymer by weight.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 11, 2012
    Publication date: March 13, 2014
    Applicant: Cirrus Healthcare Products, LLC
    Inventors: Lansing M. Lewis, III, Drew E. O'Connell, SR.
  • Publication number: 20140069443
    Abstract: An earplug insertion device can include a housing that is configured to hold a first earplug and a second earplug. The device can also include an ejection mechanism that can be configured to respond to a first user force by ejecting the first earplug from the device in a first ejection motion. The ejection mechanism can also being configured to respond to a second user force by ejecting the second earplug from the device in a second ejection motion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 20, 2013
    Publication date: March 13, 2014
    Applicant: J3 GROUP, LLC
    Inventors: Shawn Matthew Johnson, John Matthew Johnson, Joshua Ingvald Kenneth Johnson
  • Patent number: 8656927
    Abstract: An earplug is provided and includes a tip for use in forward and lateral sealing, which is formed to define a rearward recessed cavity, and a stem. The stem includes a user graspable elongate portion configured with a stiffness in a first direction that is greater than a stiffness in a second direction, which is transverse to the first direction, and a member, disposed at a forward end of the elongate portion and configured to be insertable into the cavity, the member including a surface to be adhered to an interior facing surface of the cavity and on which a channel is defined to allow for outflow from the cavity, and the member being formed with a shape to complement that of the cavity to axially and circumferentially align the tip and the stem.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventors: Robert Nicolo Falco, Jeffrey L. Hamer
  • Publication number: 20140014121
    Abstract: A push-in earplug including an elongate core and outer layer is disclosed. The outer layer includes a sound attenuating portion having a first average density and a stem portion having a second average density, and the second average density is greater than the first average density.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 12, 2012
    Publication date: January 16, 2014
    Inventors: James P. Endle, Jeffrey L. Hamer, Alan R. Seville, Kenneth F. Teeters
  • Patent number: 8616214
    Abstract: An earplug for insertion into an ear canal of a user has a front, a back, a side extending between the front and the back, a longitudinal axis, and a transverse axis. A core structure is selectively moveable from an un-deformed position to a deformed, insertable position suitable for insertion of the earplug into the ear canal of the user. A cover covers at least a portion of the core structure and is adapted for contact with the ear canal of the user. An actuator is operatively connected to the core structure for moving the core structure from the un-deformed position to the deformed, insertable position upon application of a force to the actuator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc.
    Inventors: KangSoo Park, JungMo Kim, InYoung Sa
  • Patent number: 8616213
    Abstract: An earplug insertion device can include a housing that is configured to hold a first earplug and a second earplug. The device can also include an ejection mechanism that can be configured to respond to a first user force by ejecting the first earplug from the device in a first ejection motion. The ejection mechanism can also being configured to respond to a second user force by ejecting the second earplug from the device in a second ejection motion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: J3 Group, LLC
    Inventors: Shawn Matthew Johnson, John Matthew Johnson, Joshua Ingvald Kenneth Johnson
  • Patent number: 8596279
    Abstract: The invention provides a stem for an earplug and an earplug incorporating the stem where the stem includes an attachment portion configured to receive and retain a sound attenuating element, the attachment portion extending substantially along an attachment axis, and a handle portion extending from the attachment portion substantially along a handle axis, where at least part of the handle axis is non-collinear with respect to the attachment axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2013
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventor: Robert N. Falco
  • Patent number: 8590539
    Abstract: A headgear-earwear assembly and a method of assembling the same. The headgear-earwear assembly can include an earwear and a headgear adapted to be coupled together. The earwear can include an elongated member, such as a cord, and an earpiece coupled to the elongated member. The headgear can include a major surface and a channel oriented substantially along the major surface of the headgear. The channel can be configured to removably house at least a portion of the length of the elongated member. The headgear can further include an aperture positioned adjacent the channel and open to the channel. The aperture can include an undulating shape along at least a portion of its length. The method can include positioning at least a portion of the elongated member in the channel, such that at least a portion of the length of the elongated member is removably housed in the channel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company
    Inventor: Laurent Froissard