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United States Patent Application 20160262598
Kind Code A1
Levy; Avi ;   et al. September 15, 2016

Rotatable Connector for an Endoscope

Abstract

A rotating connector formed within an endoscope console for connecting an endoscope to a console, comprising: a fixed part located on the endoscope console for attaching the rotating connector to the console; and a rotating part adapted to be attached to the at least one fixed part such that the rotating part can rotate relatively to the at least one fixed part, the rotating part also adapted to receiving an endoscope connector, wherein the rotating connector enables rotation of the endoscope while eliminating twisting of a proximal shaft connecting the endoscope to the console.


Inventors: Levy; Avi; (Herzliya, IL) ; Levi; Moshe; (Ganey Tikva, IL) ; Aizenfeld; Amram; (Ramot Menashe, IL) ; Kirma; Yaniv; (Karcur, IL)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

EndoChoice Innovation Center Ltd.

Caesarea

IL
Family ID: 1000001967394
Appl. No.: 15/069732
Filed: March 14, 2016


Related U.S. Patent Documents

Application NumberFiling DatePatent Number
13713466Dec 13, 20129314147
15069732
61569798Dec 13, 2011

Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A61B 1/00124 20130101; A61B 1/018 20130101; A61B 1/00066 20130101; A61B 1/0005 20130101; A61B 1/0661 20130101; A61B 1/00039 20130101; A61B 1/04 20130101
International Class: A61B 1/00 20060101 A61B001/00; A61B 1/04 20060101 A61B001/04; A61B 1/06 20060101 A61B001/06; A61B 1/018 20060101 A61B001/018

Claims



1. A rotating connector formed within an endoscope console for connecting an endoscope to a console, comprising: at least one fixed part located on the endoscope console for attaching the rotating connector to the console; and a rotating part adapted to be attached to the at least one fixed part such that the rotating part can rotate relatively to the at least one fixed part, the rotating part also adapted to receiving an endoscope connector, wherein the rotating connector enables rotation of the endoscope while essentially eliminating or reducing twisting of a proximal shaft connected to the endoscope.

2. The rotating connector according to claim 1, wherein said at least one fixed part comprises a housing for covering at least partially the rotating part.

3. The rotating connector according to claim 1, wherein the rotating part comprises a cylindrical opening adapted to receive at least one pin protruding from the endoscope connector.

4. The rotating connector according to claim 1, wherein the rotating part comprises a cylindrical opening adapted to receive a tube for passing gas, fluid or liquid to the endoscope connector.

5. The rotating connector according to claim 1, wherein the at least one fixed part comprises a recess and the at least one rotating part comprises a protruding part so that movement of the moving part within the recess limits the rotation of the at least one rotating part.

6. The rotating connector according to claim 5, wherein the rotation of the at least one rotating part is limited to about 90 degree.degree..

7. The rotating connector according to claim 1, wherein the at least one fixed part comprises a disk.

8. The rotating connector according to claim 7, wherein the disk comprises a recess for containing gas, fluid or liquid over flow, and a gasket for sealing a gap between the disk and the at least one rotating part.

9. A connector for connecting an endoscope to an endoscope console, comprising: a connector connected to a proximal shaft of the endoscope and adapted to be inserted into a rotating connector located on the endoscope console; wherein the connector and the rotating connector are adapted to enable rotation of the endoscope while eliminating twisting of the proximal shaft connecting the endoscope to the console.

10. The connector of claim 9, further comprising a protruding part adapted to be inserted into a recess in the rotating connector.

11. The connector of claim 9, further comprising a cannula for receiving flow of gas, liquid or fluid supplied from the console via a tube contained within the rotating connector.

12. (canceled)

13. A connector designed to connect an endoscope and an endoscope console, comprising: at least one first part adapted to be connected to the endoscope console; and at least one second part adapted to be connected to the endoscope, wherein the at least one first part can rotate relatively to the at least one second part.

14. The connector of claim 13 where in the at least one first part comprises at least two parts which may not rotate relatively to each other.

15. The connector of claim 13 where in the at least one second part comprises at least two parts which may not rotate relatively to each other.
Description



FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] Embodiments of the disclosure relate to a rotatable connector for an endoscope.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Endoscopes have attained great acceptance within the medical community, since they provide a means for performing procedures with minimal patient trauma, while enabling the physician to view the internal anatomy of the patient. Over the years, numerous endoscopes have been developed and categorized according to specific applications, such as cystoscopy, colonoscopy, laparoscopy, upper GI endoscopy and others. Endoscopes may be inserted into the body's natural orifices or through an incision in the skin.

[0003] An endoscope is usually an elongated tubular shaft, rigid or flexible, having one or more video cameras, fiber optic lens assemblies, or any other capturing device at its distal end or more proximally on or near the lateral surface area of the tip section. Various surgical tools may be inserted through a working channel and used near the endoscope distal end for performing different surgical procedures. The endoscope distal end or its surrounding may also comprise one or more openings through which air, water or another gas, fluid or liquid may be injected through the endoscope and into the body cavity, for purposes such as cleaning the body cavity, applying suction in order to evacuate various liquids or solids that interfere with the inspection, inflating the body cavity which may be beneficial for cases in which the body cavity, such as the colon, is shriveled or otherwise does not allow for efficient inspection, or the like.

[0004] The shaft is connected to a handle, which may include controls for operating the endoscope or an ocular for direct viewing. Viewing may also be possible via an external screen.

[0005] The endoscope may receive supplies by connecting the endoscope handle to one or more consoles providing water, air, or any other gas, fluid or liquid, or suction. Also passed through the endoscope shaft are cables such as electric wires, optic fibers, video cables or the like, for transferring signals or energy to and from the endoscope. The signals may also be received from one or more consoles, which may be the same console as the one supplying fluids or liquids, or a different one.

[0006] There is a need in the art for endoscopes, such as colonoscopies, that allow more convenient operation to the operator, and safer structure for protecting the sensitive components of the endoscope as well as the operator, such as fiber optics electrical systems, or the like.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] One aspect of the disclosure relates to a rotating connector formed within an endoscope console for connecting an endoscope to a console, comprising: one or more fixed parts located on the endoscope console for attaching the rotating connector to the console; and a rotating part adapted to be attached to any one or more of the fixed parts, such that the rotating part can rotate relatively to the fixed part, the rotating part also adapted to receiving an endoscope connector, wherein the rotating connector enables rotation of the endoscope while essentially eliminating or reducing twisting of a proximal shaft connected to the endoscope. In some embodiments of the rotating connector the fixed part may comprise a housing for covering at least partially the rotating part. In some embodiments of the rotating connector, the rotating part may comprise a cylindrical opening adapted to receive one or more pins protruding from the endoscope connector. In some embodiments of the rotating connector the rotating part may comprise a cylindrical opening adapted to receive a tube for passing gas, fluid or liquid to the endoscope connector. In some embodiments of the rotating connector, the fixed part may comprise a recess and the rotating parts may comprise a protruding part so that movement of the moving part within the recess limits the rotation of the rotating part. In some embodiments of the rotating connector the rotation of any of the rotating parts may be limited to about 90.degree.. In some embodiments of the rotating connector, the fixed parts may comprise a disk. In some embodiments of the rotating connector the disk may comprise a recess for containing gas, fluid or liquid over flow, and a gasket for sealing a gap between the disk and the at least one rotating part.

[0008] Another aspect of the disclosure relates to a connector for connecting an endoscope to an endoscope console, comprising: a connector connected to a proximal shaft of the endoscope and adapted to be inserted into a rotating connector located on the endoscope console, wherein the connector and the rotating connector are adapted to enable rotation of the endoscope while eliminating twisting of a proximal shaft connecting the endoscope to the console. In some embodiments the connector may further comprise a protruding part adapted to be inserted into a recess in the rotating connector. In some embodiments the connector may further comprise a cannula for receiving flow of gas, liquid or fluid supplied from the console via a tube contained within the rotating connector.

[0009] Yet another aspect of the disclosure relates to an endoscope console comprising a rotating connector adapted for receiving an endoscope connector, the rotating connector comprising: one or more fixed parts located on the endoscope console for attaching the rotating connector to the console; and a rotating part adapted to be attached to one or more of the fixed parts such that the rotating part can rotate relatively to the fixed part, the rotating part also adapted to receiving an endoscope connector, wherein the rotating connector enables rotation of the endoscope while essentially eliminating or reducing twisting of a proximal shaft connected to the endoscope.

[0010] Yet another aspect of the disclosure relates to a connector designed to connect an endoscope and an endoscope console, comprising: one or more first parts adapted to be connected to the endoscope console; and one or more second parts adapted to be connected to the endoscope, wherein one of the first parts can rotate relatively to one or more of the second parts. In some embodiments of the connector one of the first parts may comprise two or more parts which may not rotate relatively to each other. In some embodiments of the connector, one or more of the second parts may comprise two or more parts which may not rotate relatively to each other.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

[0011] Exemplary embodiments are illustrated in referenced figures. Dimensions of components and features shown in the figures are generally chosen for convenience and clarity of presentation and are not necessarily shown to scale. The figures are listed below.

[0012] FIG. 1 shows a semi-pictorial view of an endoscopy system;

[0013] FIG. 2 shows a semi-pictorial view of an endoscopy system with a twisted proximal shaft;

[0014] FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of an endoscope proximal shaft to be connected to a console via a rotating connector, in accordance with some exemplary embodiments of the disclosure;

[0015] FIGS. 4A-4C show perspective views of an endoscope proximal shaft rotated in various angles and connected to a console via a rotating connector, in accordance with some exemplary embodiments of the disclosure;

[0016] FIG. 5 shows a perspective cross section of a rotating connector of an endoscope console, in accordance with some exemplary embodiments of the disclosure;

[0017] FIG. 6 shows a perspective cross section of an endoscope connector connected to a rotating connector of an endoscope console, in accordance with some exemplary embodiments of the disclosure; and

[0018] FIG. 7 shows a perspective view of a rotating connector for an endoscope, in accordance with some exemplary embodiments of the disclosure.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0019] An aspect of some embodiments of the disclosure relates to a rotating connector, connected to an endoscope console, and adapted to receive am\n endoscope connector, so that rotations applied to the endoscope may be released and do not cause the endoscope proximal shaft cable to become twisted.

[0020] One technical problem addressed by the disclosed subject matter relates to the rotations and twists applied to the endoscope handle during operation.

[0021] When an operator uses an endoscope, he or she may be turning and twisting the endoscope handle when navigating within the body cavity into which the endoscope is inserted. Repeated twisting and handling may accumulate to substantial twisting of the endoscope proximal shaft, may eventually damage the proximal shaft connecting the endoscope handle to the console, or any of the tubes, cords or fibers going through the proximal shaft. Such twisting may shorten the available length of the proximal shaft, and may reduce the flexibility and ease with which the operator can use the device, thus harming its efficiency. However, in addition to releasing the rotation, it is required to provide continuous supply of gas, liquid, fluid, or suction to the endoscope, or to transfer signals or energy to or from the endoscope without having the supply interrupted by the rotation or the release thereof.

[0022] One technical solution is the provisioning of a rotating connector which connects on one side to the endoscope console, and on the other to the endoscope proximal shaft. The rotating connector provides for avoiding twists while ensuring continuous provisioning of gas, liquid, fluid or suction to the endoscope. Using the rotating connector, twists and turns applied to the endoscope handle are essentially, not formed, released and/or do not accumulate, so the endoscope proximal shaft does not become twisted or tangled.

[0023] One technical effect of the disclosed subject matter is the elimination of twists of an endoscope proximal shaft, thus avoiding damage to the proximal shaft or to fibers, cords or tubes going through the proximal shaft. A further advantage of the rotating connector is the elimination of the shortening of the proximal shaft, thus providing for enhanced ease and comfort to a user, and greater functionality. Yet, the rotating connector provides for continuous supply of gas, liquid, fluid, to the endoscope.

[0024] Another technical effect of the disclosed subject matter is that since the rotating connector is attached to the endoscope console, fewer parts are rotating, compared for example to systems in which the connector used for releasing the twists is located on the endoscope handle. In particular, no cords or fibers are twisted which reduces their wear and tear, keeps them at better state, and improves the maintainability of the endoscope system.

[0025] Yet another technical effect of the disclosed subject matter is that the provisioning of the release mechanism on the endoscope console, rather than on the endoscope handle or another part held by an operator, eliminates the need to carry further weight by the operator, and enhances operation simplicity.

[0026] Referring now to FIG. 1, showing a semi-pictorial view of an endoscopy system 100. System 100 may include endoscope 102. Endoscope 102 may include a handle 104, from which an elongated shaft 106 emerges. Elongated shaft 106 terminates with a tip section 108 which may be turnable by way of a bending section 110.

[0027] Tip 108 may include one or more capturing devices such as a camera, one or more internal or external illuminators, i.e., an illuminator which produces light, or an illuminator which reflects light produced elsewhere, an opening for a surgical tool, a fluid or liquid injector, or the like.

[0028] Handle 104 may be used for maneuvering elongated shaft 106 within a body cavity by pushing, pulling, rotating or other motions; the handle may include one or more knobs and/or switches 105 which control bending section 110 as well as endoscopic functions such as fluid or liquid injection, or suction. Handle 104 may further include one or more working channel openings such as working channel opening 112 through which surgical tools may be inserted which may then be used in the vicinity of endoscope tip 108 within the body cavity.

[0029] One or more cables or tubes such as proximal shaft 114 may connect between handle 104 and one or more consoles such as console 116. Proximal shaft 114 may include therein one or more fluid channels, one or more electrical or data channels, optic fibers or the like. The electrical channel(s) may include at least one data cable for receiving visual signals such as video signals from a capture device located on tip 108, as well as one or more power cables for providing electrical power to the capture devices or to the illuminators. Proximal shaft 114 may connect to console 116 using a connector 118.

[0030] Console 116 may govern power transmission to endoscope's 102 tip section 108, such as for the tip section's capture devices and illuminators. Console 116 may further provide one or more gas, fluid, liquid and/or suction pump which provide corresponding functionalities to endoscope 102. One or more input devices, such as a keyboard 120 may be connected to console 116 for the purpose of human interaction with the controller. In another configuration (not shown), an input device, such as a keyboard, may be integrated with the console in the same casing.

[0031] A display 120 may be connected to or embedded within console 116, and configured to display images and/or video streams received from the cameras of tip 108. Display 120 may further be operative to display a user interface for allowing a human operator to set various features or parameters of system 100.

[0032] Optionally, the image streams received from the one or more cameras of endoscope 102 may be displayed on display 120. If endoscope 102 comprises multiple cameras, the images may be displayed on display 120 side-by-side, interchangeably (namely, the operator may switch between views from the different cameras manually), or in any other manner. Alternatively, the video streams may be processed by console 116 to combine them into a single video frame which may be panoramic or three-dimensional, based on an overlap between fields of view of the cameras or on known coordinates obtained for example from fiducials. In another configuration (not shown), two or more displays may be connected to console 116, each for displaying a video stream from a different camera of the multi-camera endoscope.

[0033] It will be appreciated that handle 104 may be connected to two or more consoles, each providing one or more different functionalities of the endoscope. For example, a first console may provide liquids, fluids, and suction while another console may provide electric power and receive video images.

[0034] Referring now to FIG. 2, showing the endoscope of FIG. 1, wherein the proximal shaft is highly twisted.

[0035] The endoscope of FIG. 2 may have been used for some period of time by an operator, who turned and rotated and twisted endoscope handle 104, and caused Proximal shaft 114 to twist and entangle.

[0036] For illustration purposes only, the entangling effect may be similar to what may happen to a phone handset connected to the base station when the cord entangles. However, an endoscope proximal shaft, due for example to the stiff tubes, may bear much less twisting. After twisting the endoscope may become less comfortable to use and the operator may have lesser flexibility and freedom to operate the endoscope.

[0037] Referring now to FIG. 3, showing a perspective view of an endoscope proximal shaft to be connected to a console via a rotating connector.

[0038] FIG. 3 shows proximal shaft 114, connected to connector 300. Connector 300 has protruding therefrom a short pipe or cannula 308 and a pin 312. Connector 300 may be connected to the rotating connector of the endoscope console (not shown) having external housing 304. The Rotating connector, exemplary embodiments of which are detailed in association with FIG. 5 and FIG. 6 below, has one or more rotating parts and one or more fixed parts. The fixed parts, including housing 304, are attached to console 116 and do not rotate. Thus, when proximal shaft 114 is rotated, connector 300 and the rotating parts of the rotating connector of the endoscope console rotate with it, but the rotation is released by the relative movement enabled between the rotating parts and the fixed parts of the rotating connector of the endoscope console, and thus proximal shaft 114 is prevented from twisting.

[0039] It will be appreciated that in some embodiments, the relative movement between the rotating part and the fixed part of the rotating connector may be limited to a predetermined angle, which is in accordance with the operational requirements of the endoscope. This angle limitation is also detailed on association with FIG. 5 and FIG. 6 below.

[0040] Referring now to FIGS. 4A-4C, showing connector 300 as connected to the rotating connector of the endoscope console (shown by housing 304). As seen in FIGS. 4A-4C, connector 300 may rotate due to rotation of proximal shaft 114, which may be caused by the operator maneuvering the endoscope handle. Connector 300 is 90.degree. apart between FIG. 4A and FIG. 4B, and between FIG. 4B and FIG. 4C. Connector 300 thus rotates, and so do the rotating parts of the rotating connector of the endoscope console. However, the fixed parts of rotating console connector such as housing 304, do not rotate. Thus, the proximal shaft may be rotated, but it may not become twisted, and continuous provisioning of supplies to the endoscope is not interrupted.

[0041] Referring now to FIG. 5, showing an exemplary embodiment of perspective cross section of a rotating connector of an endoscope console.

[0042] The connector, generally referenced 500 comprises rotating part 508, adapted to receive connector 300 which may connect to the endoscope proximal shaft. Thus, rotating part 508 comprises a cylindrical opening 512 adapted to receive pin 312 of connector 300, and cylindrical opening 518 which may be adapted to contain within a tube or cannula 516. Pin 312, when inserted into cylindrical opening 512, may be used for stabilizing the endoscope connector within the rotating connector. When connector 300 is inserted into rotating part 508, tube 308 is inserted into the end of cannula 516, thus providing gas, fluid or liquid passed through cannula 316 to the endoscope. Rotating part 508 may also comprise rotating base 519.

[0043] While rotating part 508 may rotate when connector 300 is connected thereto and rotates, other parts of connector 500 may be fixed and do not rotate.

[0044] One fixed part is base 502, which connects or attaches rotating connector 500 to console 116, and another fixed part is housing 304 which substantially covers at least the sides of rotating connector 500. Cannula 516 located within rotating part 508 is in continuation, or in proximity to tube 532 which penetrates through base 502 and receives supplies from console 116, such as air, water, other liquid or fluid, suction, light, or the like.

[0045] The fixed parts may also include disk 524 which may be connected to base 502. Disk 524 may have therein a recess 528. When gas, fluid or liquid flows from console 116 through tube 532 into cannula 516, overflows may collect in recess 528. Disk 524 may also have a peripheral recess 530 which may contain a sealing material or a gasket, for sealing the gap between disk 524 and rotating base 519, in order to eliminate the gas, fluid or liquid from spreading around.

[0046] Thus, when rotating part 508 rotates together with connector 300, cannula 516 may not be aligned with tube 532, but the fluid or gas will still collect in recess 528 and flow uninterruptedly into tube cannula, tube 308 and into the endoscope.

[0047] Base 519 and disk 524 may be held together using cover 520. Cover 520 may comprise a recess 536 which may stretch along a predetermined part of the perimeter, for example 90.degree. of the perimeter. Rotating base 519 may be equipped with a knob or another protrusion 540 which is placed within recess 536, so that the rotation of rotating part 508, as well as connector 300, is limited to the movement of protrusion 540 within recess 536.

[0048] It will be appreciated that the perimeter of base 502, housing 504, rotating part 508, cover 520 and disk 524 may be shaped substantially as a circle, in order to provide for convenient rotation of rotating part 508 relatively to the fixed parts.

[0049] It will be that appreciated by a person skilled in the art that rotating part 508 and connector 300 are constructed with corresponding structures, such as to provide secure lock and convenient release.

[0050] Referring now to FIG. 6, showing another view of a cross section of a rotating connector of an endoscope console.

[0051] Endoscope connector 500 comprises rotating part 508 which is adapted to receive connector 300, such that when connector 300 is connected to the endoscope, tube 308 protruding from connector 300 is inserted into cannula 516, and pin 312 is inserted into recess 512.

[0052] Endoscope connector 500 further comprises fixed base 502, which connects or attaches rotating connector 500 to console 116, housing 304 which substantially covers at least the sides of rotating connector 500, and cover 520. Cover 520 comprises recess 536, in which knob 540 of rotating base 519 can move.

[0053] Referring now to FIG. 7, showing another embodiment of a rotating connector for an endoscope.

[0054] FIG. 7 shows endoscope connector 300 and console 116. Connector 700 is designed to connect on one side to connector 300, and on the other side to console 116 having connections as known in the art.

[0055] Connector 700 may comprise therein at least two groups of parts: a first group of parts which may connect to connector 300, and a second group of parts which may connect to console 116 through connector 118, such that parts of the first group do not rotate relatively to each other, parts of the second group also do not rotate relatively to each other, but the first group rotates relatively to the second group. Connector 700 can be designed such that the parts connecting to condole 116 are similar to the fixed parts of connector 500, e.g. fixed base 502, housing 304 and cover 520. The parts connectable to connector 300 may be designed to be similar to rotating part 508 of connector 500 and additional parts that rotate with it.

[0056] This embodiment enables immediate adaptation of any endoscope to the rotating connector, so that no changes are required to be made to the endoscope or to the console.

[0057] The disclosed connectors provide for eliminating torsion and twist of an endoscope proximal shaft when the endoscope is rotated, while providing uninterrupted supply of gas, liquid or fluid, and without twisting tubes or other parts which may harm them, which provides for easier maintenance and enhanced ease of use.

[0058] The disclosed connectors can be used for eliminating twisting in any existing endoscope and console. By providing a connector 300 which connects to the endoscope proximal shaft, and providing a rotating connector 500 to the endoscope console, any existing endoscope can be connected to a console which provides the necessary supplies.

[0059] In some exemplary embodiments, by designing rotating connector 500 such that cylindrical opening 518 is in continuation to tube 532, an electric wire or optic fiber may pass through tube 532 and cylindrical opening 518, and may connect using a corresponding rotating plug to a wire or fiber passing through connector 300. Thus, signals may be passed from the endoscope console to the endoscope without twisting the proximal shaft or any cables and harming them.

[0060] It will be appreciated that endoscope handle 104 can be connected to two or more consoles such as console 116, using a corresponding number of instances of connector pairs such as endoscope connector 300 and rotating connector 500. Thus, the endoscope can be connected to a first console supplying gas, fluid, liquid, suction, or the like, a second consoles supplying electric power and optic fibers, or the like. Using the disclosed connectors provides for twist-free proximal shaft and cables connecting the endoscope to each of the consoles.

[0061] It will also be appreciated that the disclosed connectors are exemplary only, and that various modifications and alternative embodiments can be designed to enable the rotation of an endoscope proximal shaft without making it twisted, and without interrupting the supply flow to the endoscope.

[0062] While a number of exemplary embodiments and configurations have been discussed above, those of skill in the art will recognize certain modifications, permutations, additions and sub-combinations thereof. It is therefore intended that the following appended claims and claims hereafter introduced be interpreted to include all such modifications, permutations, additions and sub-combinations as are within their true spirit and scope.

[0063] In the description and claims of the application, each of the words "comprise" "include" and "have", and forms thereof, are not necessarily limited to members in a list with which the words may be associated.

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