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United States Patent 3,668,394
Panzer June 6, 1972

X-RAY FILM IDENTIFICATION MEANS

Abstract

Means for contrastingly projecting X-rays for identification purposes upon an X-ray film carried by a cassette include, at the front face of the cassette (the side facing the radiation source), an indicia sheet of X-ray opaque material form which a plurality of identifying characters have been punched out, and imperforate X-ray absorbent sheet material interposed between said indicia sheet and the radiation source for attenuating the radiation beam passing to said indicia sheet. The indicia sheet and the imperforate sheet material, which are arranged to be subjected to X-rays simultaneously with the imposing of such radiation upon the person or thing to be identified, may be varied in their relative opacities and in their cumulative opacity, depending upon the radiation strength and the X-ray absorption characteristic of the subject being photographed. Said indicia sheet and imperforate sheet material are advantageously separably associated with a suitable indicia carrier.


Inventors: Panzer; Norman (South Orange, NJ)
Appl. No.: 05/060,311
Filed: August 3, 1970


Current U.S. Class: 378/165
Current International Class: G03B 42/04 (20060101); G03b 017/26 ()
Field of Search: 250/65,67,86

References Cited

U.S. Patent Documents
2120064 June 1938 Buckley
2162420 June 1939 Buckley
2390397 December 1945 Stadler
3518428 June 1970 Ring
1535359 April 1925 Tousey
Primary Examiner: Lindquist; William F.

Claims



1. X-ray film identification means for use in association with a cassette for latently imposing identification indicia upon a film in the cassette simultaneously with the imposition on said film of a latent image of a subject being radiographed; said identification means comprising a relatively thin indicia strip of X-ray absorbent sheet material formed with removed areas thereof constituting identifying indicia, means for supporting said indicia strip at the front face of said cassette, a plurality of selectively useable imperforate attenuation strips of sheet material all of different degrees of X-ray absorbency, and means for supporting any selected one of said attenuation strips in fixed position in interfering alignment between said indicia strip and a source of radiographic X-ray radiation of sufficient strength and duration to pass through and radiograph said subject; said indicia strip being of X-ray absorbent material of such relatively low X-ray absorbency as to be over-penetrated by said radiation being directed upon the subject being radiographed, and said selected attenuation strip being of such X-ray absorbency as to reduce the radiographic radiation reaching the indicia strip to a condition in which it is insufficient to over-penetrate the

2. X-ray film identification means for use in association with a cassette for latently imposing identification indicia upon a film in the cassette simultaneously with the imposition on said film of a latent image of a subject being radiographed; said identification means comprising a plurality of imperforate attenuation strips of different degrees of X-ray absorbency, a frame, non-shiftably disposable at the front face of said cassette, a relatively thin indicia strip of X-ray absorbent sheet material formed with removed areas thereof constituting identifying indicia, means for supporting said indicia strip on said frame, and means for supporting any selected one of said attenuation strips in fixed position on said frame in interfering alignment between said indicia strip and a source of X-ray radiation of sufficient strength and duration to pass through and radiograph said subject; said indicia strip being of X-ray absorbent material of such relatively light X-ray absorbency as to be over-penetrated by said radiation, and the selected attenuation strip being of such X-ray absorbency as to reduce the radiation reaching the indicia strip to a condition in which it is insufficient to over-penetrate

3. Identification means according to claim 2, said indicia strip comprising a sheet of X-ray absorbent material sandwiched between sheets of paper.

4. Identification means according to claim 2, said indicia strip having X-ray absorptiveness corresponding approximately to the X-ray absorptiveness of solid tin of a thickness of about 0.15 to 0.20 millimeter, and said selected attenuation strip comprising sheet material having X-ray absorptiveness corresponding approximately to the X-ray absorptiveness of a subject to be radiographed.
Description



BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

One identification arrangement hitherto quite generally employed, involves the provision of a suitable number of fonts of alphabetical and/or numerical characters, the characters in the fonts having been stamped out separately from sheet lead of suitable thickness. For providing identification for a film to be exposed, the characters are individually selected from the font or fonts and are individually placed in a carrier in association with a cassette to form identifying matter upon the film simultaneously with the X-ray exposure upon the person or thing being photographed. The selecting of the lead characters and placing them in the carrier is an operation quite similar to hand setting of type in the printing industry.

A serious disadvantage of the just mentioned prior practice resides in the fact that the characters must be separately handled initially to distribute them into proper compartments of a storage container, and must be separately selected and handled to compose the desired identifying legend and to restore them to the proper compartments after each usage. This is very time consuming. Errors in such distribution inevitably occur, thereby increasing the time required for using this prior identification means.

In another prior arrangement, the identifying legend is photographically printed, in the darkroom, upon a reserved blocked area of a previously X-ray exposed film. In the darkness, it is difficult to assure proper location of the legend upon the reserved area of the film and also difficult to properly control the light employed in contact printing of the legend on the film. Moreover, as the application of the legend is often done by a person other than the one who made the exposure, and is done at a different time, the danger exists that the applied legend will not be one which correctly identifies the subject photographed.

The objects of this invention, as generalized in the foregoing abstract of the disclosure and as detailed in the following description, are to provide improved highly economical identification means which prevent the application of wrongful legends to films, are easily and quickly utilized, minimize the danger of lead poisoning, give sharp contrast in the indicia applied to the film to make said indicia easily readable, are usable both with currently used cassettes and currently used indicia carrier devices, and yield various other improvements over identification means hitherto employed.

THE ACCOMPANYING DRAWING

In the accompanying drawing:

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a more or less conventional indicia carrier with a preferred embodiment of X-ray film identification means associated therewith according to the present invention; some portions being broken away to show underlying parts.

FIG. 2 is a rear elevational view of the device illustrated in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a front elevational view of an indicia strip constituting a part of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, vertical sectional view of said carrier, substantially on the line 4--4 of FIG. 1; the carrier being shown as associated with a fragmentarily indicated Cassette.

FIG. 5 is a greatly enlarged, sectional view of the indicia strip of FIG. 3.

FIGS. 6 and 7 are greatly enlarged, sectional views of modified forms of indicia strips.

The thicknesses of materials shown in FIGS. 4 - 7 are exaggerated to facilitate illustration.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

A fragmentarily indicated X-ray film cassette 10 is illustrated in upright position with its flat front face 10f facing a radiation source symbolically indicated at 12. Suitably held in place upon the cassette's front 10f, is an indicia carrier in the form of a frame 14, preferably formed of sheet aluminum. Identifying indicia associated with the carrier 14 are thus in position to impose upon the film in the cassette a proper identification of the person or thing being photographed simultaneously with the taking of the photograph.

It is common practice for lead letters 16 and/or numbers to be permanently fixed upon the carrier 14; such permanent lead letters, for example, being employed to indicate the name of a hospital and/ or a physician. The indicia carrier 14 may be held in place on the cassette 10 by substantially radio-transparent adhesive tape (not Shown).

The present invention is directed to the association with the carrier 14, of improved means by which characters will be imposed upon the film, upon such exposure, identifying the person, animal or object being photographed.

In practicing this invention according to FIGS. 1-5, an indicia strip 18 of X-ray absorbent material is prepared by having indicia characters 20 punched out, by a suitable punching device, so that the strip has a succession of open characters identifying the patient or object to be photographed.

The thus prepared strip is then suitably applied in a proper position upon the back of the carrier 14 as illustrated herein or alternatively, upon the front of the cassette 10. A simple way to apply the strip to the carrier is by using suitable, substantially transparent adhesive tape or by employing strip material having an adhesive coating 22 on the front face of the strip 18 to cause the latter to adhere to the carrier. The coating 22 is preferably of such character as to enable the strip 18 to be peeled off the carrier and discarded after it has served its purpose.

The indicia strip 18 is relatively thin and of such character as to be easily over-penetrated by the radiation directed upon the person or object being photographed, in which event the identifying characters would not form in readily readable contrast or definition upon the film.

The just stated condition is overcome, within this invention, by applying upon the front of the carrier 14, in substantial register with the indicia strip 18, a filter or attenuation strip 24 of material of sufficient X-ray absorbency to prevent the mentioned over-penetration and to enable the strip 18 to impose readily readable indicia upon the film.

The natures of the materials of the filter 24 and the indicia strip 18, and of the thicknesses and other relative characteristics thereof are somewhat variable within this invention as is hereinafter explained.

In the preferred embodiment of this invention, as illustrated in FIGS. 1-5, the attenuation strip 24 is of copper, and the indicia strip 18 is a plastic tape of polyvinyl chloride within which, during manufacture thereof, is uniformly dispersed, finely pulverized tin, the presence of which is indicated at 26.

Using X-ray photography of the human body for illustrative purposes, it has been found that, irrespective of the part of the body being photographed, the indicia strip 18 should preferably be of a thickness approximately equivalent, in X-ray absorption, to the absorption capability of a thickness of about 0.18 millimeter of solid tin. The thickness and, hence, the X-ray absorption characteristic of the filter 24 should preferably correspond at least approximately to the absorption capability of the part of the body being photographed.

With an indicia strip 18 of the just indicated absorption characteristic, it has been found that over-penetration of said strip may be avoided, where the torso is being photographed, by providing that the attenuation strip 24 be of solid copper of a substantially uniform thickness of approximately 0.60 to 0.65 millimeters.

When photographing the human skull, wherein stronger radiation or radiation of longer duration is required for good results, the thickness of the copper attenuation strip 24 is preferably increased to provide stronger filtration for the radiation imposed upon the indicia strip 18. Thus, when the skull is being photographed, the more or less normally used 0.60 to 0.65 millimeter attenuation strip 24 may be removed from carrier 14 by sliding it lengthwisely from between the flanges 28 which hold the latter strip in place on the indicia carrier; and a substitute thicker copper attenuation strip may be slid into place between said flanges. This substitute copper strip should preferably be of a thickness of approximately 0.95 to 1.05 millimeter.

On the other hand, where weaker radiation or radiation of shorter duration is employed as, for example, when photographing a person's hand, the thickness of a substitute copper attenuation strip may advantageously be considerably thinner, preferably about 0.25 millimeter.

The indicia strip shown at 18a in FIG. 6 may be employed in place of the strip 18. The strip 18a is of absorbent paper which is impregnated with suitable X-ray absorbent material such as, for example, barium stannate, the presence of which is indicated at 30. The thickness of the thus impregnated paper should be such that identifying indicia punched out therefrom will cause the formation of a good contrast, readable identification legend on the developed film. Thus, the impregnated paper may, advantageously, be of such thickness as to have approximately the same X-ray absorbency as the plastic tape strip 18.

The indicia strip shown at 18b in FIG. 7 may be employed in place of either of the strips 18 or 18a. The strip 18b is a lamination of a layer of tin foil 32, sandwiched fixedly between layers 34 of paper. Assuming that the paper is of negligible X-ray absorbency, the tin foil 32 should preferably be about 0.18 millimeter in thickness or of a thickness between 0.15 and 0.20 millimeter.

The drawing indicates that the adhesive coating 22, if employed at all, may be employed on any one of the strips 18, 18a, and 18b.

Those familiar with X-ray photography will readily perceive that, while X-ray absorbency approximately equivalent to that of a thickness of about 0.18 millimeter of solid tin is recommended for the indicia strip 18, such absorbency of the latter strip may be somewhat more or less than indicated, provided that the absorbency of said strip is such that it, with punched out characters therein, will impose such radiation on the film that, when developed, the identification legend thereon will be in adequate contrast to be readily readable.

It will also be perceived that the X-ray absorbency of the attenuation strip 24 should preferably be increased or decreased substantially in accordance with the increase or decrease of the imposed radiation.

It will also be realized that other X-ray absorbent materials than those hereinbefore specified. Thus, in proper thicknesses for the suggested attenuation of the radiation, this invention comprehends, for example, the possible use, also, of lead, antimony, or aluminum for the attenuation strip 24.

Although the X-ray absorbent media disclosed herein for the indicia strips 18, 18a, and 18b appear to be the media best suited for an indicia strip, the use of other X-ray absorbent media for the latter purpose may be employed within this invention.

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