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Patent Issued for Connector Module Assemblies, Methods, and Components for Implantable Medical Electrical Devices

January 29, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Journal of Engineering -- A patent by the inventors Ries, Andrew J. (Lino Lakes, MN); Prasannakumar, Jeevan M. (Circle Pines, MN); Nelson, Richard P. (Hudson, WI), filed on May 17, 2012, was published online on January 14, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews correspondents.

Patent number 8628348 is assigned to Medtronic, Inc. (Minneapolis, MN).

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Implantable medical systems that are designed to deliver electrical stimulation, for example, to cardiac muscle or the spinal cord, and/or to monitor bodily electrical activity, typically include a relatively compact implantable device, for example, like an exemplary device 100 shown in FIG. 1, and one or more elongate implantable electrical leads (not shown). With reference to FIG. 1, those skilled in the art will appreciate that three connector terminals of one or more leads may be plugged into bores 121, 122 of a connector module assembly 115 of device 100, to electrically couple electrodes of the one or more leads to a power source and circuitry which is contained in a hermitically sealed housing 104, for example, formed from a Titanium alloy, on which connector module assembly 115 is mounted. Connector module assembly 115 includes one or more contact surfaces exposed along a length of each bore 121, 122 for electrical coupling with corresponding contact surfaces of the corresponding lead connector terminal inserted therein. An insulative body of connector module assembly 115 supports and isolates the contact components and corresponding conductive interconnects that extend from the contact components to hermetically sealed feedthroughs, within the insulative body, for electrical coupling of the contact components to the circuitry and power supply within housing 104. Numerous constructions and assembly methods for implantable medical device connector module assemblies are known in the art, some of which are disclosed in commonly assigned U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,895,276, 7,309,262, 7,317,946, 7,526,339, 7,717,754 and 8,032,221. However, there is still a need for new and improved connector module assembly constructions and associated assembly methods."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "A contact component of an implantable medical device connector module assembly, according to some embodiments of the present invention, includes a connector bore, which is aligned and in fluid communication with a corresponding connector bore of an insulative body of the assembly (i.e. to receive insertion of a connector terminal of an implantable medical electrical lead therein), and a threaded bore, which is adapted to mate with a set screw and position a conductive end thereof in contact with a connector terminal inserted within the connector bore. According to some preferred embodiments, the contact component further includes a flanged bore, which is in fluid communication with the threaded bore; and the insulative body preferably includes an insulative bore that extends from the flanged bore of the contact component to an opening, at a surface of the body, for example, to form either a bond zone for a sealing grommet/septum, or a sealing zone for a seal member of a sealing type of set screw that is engaged within the threaded bore.

"The flanged bore of each contact component, according to some preferred embodiments and methods, has a relatively smooth perimeter surface sized to create a shutoff with a pin when the flanged bore is positioned thereabout during injection molding to form the insulative body of the connector module assembly. A perimeter surface of an insulative bore of the body, formed around the pin, is preferably flush with the flanged bore. Furthermore, a centerline axis of the flanged bore is preferably aligned with that of the threaded bore, for example, to within approximately 0.002 inch (0.05 mm), so that the resulting insulative bore of the molded body has a centerline aligned with that of the threaded bore.

"According to some embodiments and methods, in which an elongate finger-like portion of an electrical component is welded to each contact component of the connector module assembly, prior to molding, a welding fixture pin may be inserted within the above-described flanged bore of each contact component, such that the engagement therebetween is similar to that with the aforementioned pin used in molding, in order to hold each contact component in position, for example, relative to one another, for welding. According to those preferred embodiments that include a plurality of the above-described contact components, the fit of each welding fixture pin and of each mold core pin in the flanged bore of the corresponding contact component can be useful for holding a desired positional tolerance of the contact components relative to one another during welding and molding.

"According to some methods, a two-stage molding process is employed to form the insulative body of the connector module assembly, such that the insulative body includes a core portion, formed by a first shot of insulative material, and an overlay portion, formed by a second shot of insulative material. At least one of the above-described contact components may be molded within the core portion during the first stage of the molding process; and the above-described insulative bore, which extends from the flanged bore of each contact component, is preferably wholly formed by the second shot of insulative material."

URL and more information on this patent, see: Ries, Andrew J.; Prasannakumar, Jeevan M.; Nelson, Richard P.. Connector Module Assemblies, Methods, and Components for Implantable Medical Electrical Devices. U.S. Patent Number 8628348, filed May 17, 2012, and published online on January 14, 2014. Patent URL:

Keywords for this news article include: Medtronic Inc.

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Source: Journal of Engineering

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