The assignee for this patent, patent number 8795183, is
Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Medical devices for surgical procedures such as lipoplasty typically include a handpiece that allow surgeons to easily hold and manipulate the medical device when using the device during a medical procedure. Medical devices used in lipoplasty include ultrasonic probe assemblies and cannulas.
"Ultrasonic probes are available in different shapes and sizes for emulsifying adipose tissue in different parts of the body. An ultrasonic driver assembly is typically included within a handpiece with various probes able to be connected to the ultrasonic driver and handpiece. The probes are typically threaded on one end and engage threads on the ultrasonic driver. When engaging the probe with the driver the probe is tightened to ensure good mechanical coupling. During tightening, the ultrasonic driver assembly may rotate within the handpiece causing wires that power the assembly to twist. Repeated rotation of the ultrasonic driver assembly to connect and disconnect various probes results in broken wires and shorting of the ultrasonic driver assembly.
"Medical devices that are reused, such as handpieces, must be sterilized before each use. Sterilization typically is performed using steam within a pressurized autoclave. The steam kills microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses. After the sterilization process, a dry cycle is performed to eliminate any trapped moisture that remains from the steam, such as may occur within a handpiece with an ultrasonic driver assembly. Medical professionals do not always follow the appropriate procedures to ensure that all of the trapped moisture is removed during the dry cycle. The resulting condensation from the trapped humidity may create corrosion problems or other damage to electrical or other components of the medical device.
"Embodiments of the present invention have been made in light of these and other considerations. However, the relatively specific problems discussed above do not limit the applicability of the embodiments of the present invention."
In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "The summary is provided to introduce aspects of some embodiments of the present invention in a simplified form, and is not intended to identify key or essential elements of the claimed invention, nor is it intended to limit the scope of the claims.
"Embodiments of the present invention include methods and devices for holding an ultrasonic driver assembly within a handpiece and preventing the ultrasonic driver assembly from rotating within the handpiece. Embodiments include positioning the ultrasonic driver assembly such that the ultrasonic driver assembly is held in place at a vibrational node of the ultrasonic driver assembly. A mechanism is then provided at the node of the ultrasonic driver assembly to limit the rotation of the driver assembly within the handpiece.
"Other embodiments of the present invention are directed to methods and devices for venting a handpiece of a medical device. These embodiments provide a vent for the handpiece. A porous membrane is positioned over an opening of the vent to allow gas, including steam, to enter and escape from the handpiece and prevent liquids from entering the handpiece."
For more information, see this patent: Siebrecht, Wayne A.; Wesley, David J.; Mogill, David B.; Goldberger, Daniel S.. Handpiece for Ultrasonic Medical Devices Including Seal for Mechanical Isolation of
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