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Pressure actuated valve with improved slit configuration

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Pressure actuated valve with improved slit configuration


A valve apparatus for medical applications, comprises a flexible member extending across a lumen through which a flow of materials is to be controlled. The flexible member includes a plurality of movable elements formed on opposite sides of a slit extending through the flexible member. The moveable members are biased so that when a pressure less than a predetermined threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are maintained in a closed position in which no flow is permitted past the flexible member and, when a pressure at least as great as the threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are moved to an open position separated from one another along the slit permitting flow through the lumen.

Browse recent Navilyst Medical, Inc. patents - Marlborough, MA, US
Inventors: Karla Weaver, Jim Culhane
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120271247 - Class: 604247 (USPTO) - 10/25/12 - Class 604 
Surgery > Means For Introducing Or Removing Material From Body For Therapeutic Purposes (e.g., Medicating, Irrigating, Aspirating, Etc.) >Treating Material Introduced Into Or Removed From Body Orifice, Or Inserted Or Removed Subcutaneously Other Than By Diffusing Through Skin >Material Introduced Or Removed Through Conduit, Holder, Or Implantable Reservoir Inserted In Body >Means For Controlling Material Flow To Or From Body, Or Metering A Predetermined Dose Or Amount >Having Fluid Responsive Means (e.g., Check Valve, Etc.)

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120271247, Pressure actuated valve with improved slit configuration.

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CROSS-REFERENCE TO PRIOR APPLICATIONS

This application is a continuation of, and claims priority to, copending U.S. application Ser. No. 10/630,885, filed on Jul. 30, 2003.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Many medical procedures require repeated and prolonged access to a patient\'s vascular system. For example, during dialysis treatment blood may be removed from the body for external filtering and purification, to make up for the inability of the patient\'s kidneys to carry out that function. In this process, the patient\'s venous blood is extracted, processed in a dialysis machine and returned to the patient. The dialysis machine purifies the blood by diffusing harmful compounds through membranes, and may add to the blood therapeutic agents, nutrients etc., as required before returning it to the patient\'s body. Typically the blood is extracted from a source vein (e.g., the vena cava) through a catheter sutured to the skin with a distal needle of the catheter penetrating the source vein.

It is impractical and dangerous to insert and remove the catheter for each dialysis session. Thus, the needle and catheter are generally implanted semi permanently with a distal portion of the assembly remaining within the patient in contact with the vascular system while a proximal portion of the catheter remains external to the patient\'s body. The proximal end is sealed after each dialysis session has been completed to prevent blood loss and infections. However, even small amounts of blood oozing into the proximal end of the catheter may be dangerous as thrombi can form therein due to coagulation which thrombi may then be introduced into the patient\'s vascular system when blood flows from the dialysis machine through the catheter in a later session.

A common method of sealing the catheter after a dialysis session is to shut the catheter with a simple clamp. This method is often unsatisfactory because the repeated application of the clamp may weaken the walls of the catheter due to the stress placed on the walls at a single point. In addition, the pinched area of the catheter may not be completely sealed allowing air to enter the catheter which may coagulate any blood present within the catheter. Alternatively, valves have been used at the opening of the catheter in an attempt to prevent leaking through the catheter when the dialysis machine is disconnected. However, the unreliability of conventional valves has rendered them unsatisfactory for extended use.

SUMMARY

OF THE INVENTION

In one aspect the present invention is directed to a valve apparatus for medical applications, comprising a flexible member extending across a lumen through which a flow of materials is to be controlled. The flexible member includes a plurality of movable elements formed on opposite sides of a slit extending through the flexible member. The moveable members are biased so that when a pressure less than a predetermined threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are maintained in a closed position in which no flow is permitted past the flexible member and, when a pressure at least as great as the threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are moved to an open position separated from one another along the slit permitting flow through the lumen.

In a different aspect, the present invention is directed to a dialysis connector comprising a valve housing having a first end connectable to a patient line and a second end mounted to a dialysis line and a flow passage of the housing being connected to the patient line and being operatively connectable to the dialysis line in combination with a valve element mounted within the flow passage of the housing, the valve element including a flexible member extending across the flow passage, the flexible member including a plurality of movable elements formed on opposite sides of a first slit extending through the flexible member, the moveable members being biased so that, when a pressure less than a predetermined threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are maintained in a closed position in which no flow is permitted past the flexible member and, when a pressure at least as great as

the threshold value is applied to the flexible member, the moveable elements are moved to an open position separated from one another along the first slit permitting flow through the flow passage.

In yet another aspect, the invention is directed to a flow shutoff device for medical applications comprising a housing attachable to a patient line and a pressure actuated valve mounted within the housing to selectively restrict flow therethrough, wherein movable elements of the valve are biased toward a closed position and are movable to an open position when a pressure applied to the valve exceeds a predetermined threshold value. Flow through the housing is prevented when the movable elements are in the closed position.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram of a vascular access catheter;

FIG. 2 is a schematic drawing of a vascular access catheter inserted in a patient\'s vein;

FIG. 3 is a top elevation view of a valve element according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 4 is a top elevation view of a valve element according to another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 5 is a top elevation view of a valve element with double horizontal slits according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 6 is a top elevation view of a valve element with V-configured slits according to an embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 7 is a top elevation view of a valve element with a curved slit according to an embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION



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Industry Class:
Surgery
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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120271247 A1
Publish Date
10/25/2012
Document #
13097215
File Date
04/29/2011
USPTO Class
604247
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
61M25/14
Drawings
5



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