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United States Patent 3,870,150
Hummel March 11, 1975

Sterile plastic glove and package assembly

Abstract

A disposable sterile packaged plastic glove and a container therefor are formed in a single operation. A plastic glove formed of two opposed plastic film sheets sealed to the same supporting member. The package, when opened, serves as a disposable receptacle for the used glove. Further, the package provides a convenient means for the user to insert his hand into the glove. The aforementioned Abstract is neither intended to define the invention of the application which, of course, is measured by the claims, nor is it intended to be limiting as to the scope of the invention in any way.


Inventors: Hummel; John (Tulsa, OK)
Assignee: Poly-Version, Inc. (Tulsa, OK)
Appl. No.: 05/363,570
Filed: May 24, 1973


Current U.S. Class: 206/438 ; 15/227; 206/278; 206/286
Current International Class: B65D 75/28 (20060101); B65D 75/30 (20060101); B65d 085/18 (); A61b 019/02 ()
Field of Search: 206/299,438,288,286,484,278 2/16 15/227

References Cited

U.S. Patent Documents
3638789 February 1972 Tuszewski
Primary Examiner: Price; William I.
Assistant Examiner: Farrow; Douglas B.
Attorney, Agent or Firm: King; Leonard H.

Claims



What I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. A disposable, sterile article of manufacture and a disposable container therefor comprising, in combination:

a. a flexible support member;

b. a plastic film glove having closed fingers and an open wrist portion defining a peripheral edge, said glove being positioned on said support member prior to said glove being used so as to permit removal of the glove from the support member by mechanically pulling without damaging the glove; and

c. a plastic film sheath superimposed over said glove and secured to said support member along a primary seal line completely surrounding and spaced from the peripheral edge of said glove whereby said glove is sealed in a sterile condition, said sheath and said support member, in combination, defining an initially sealed, internally sterile container for said glove, said container having an openable end for receiving the glove after its removal and use whereby said container may be discarded together with said glove therein.

2. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 1 wherein said flexible support member is a sheet of paper.

3. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 1 wherein said glove is formed of two sheets of heat sealable plastic material having a thickness in the range of 0.0005 inch + 0.007 inch.

4. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 1 including at least one free end portion of said sheath extending beyond the said primary seal line.

5. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 4 including secondary seal lines extending transverse to said primary seal line surrounding said glove, proximate said free end portion for limiting and directing the tear line created when said free end is pulled beyond the elastic limit of the film so as to expose said wrist portion.

6. The article of claim 5 wherein said free end portion is located near said wrist portion.

7. An article of manufacture comprising:

a. a flexible support member;

b. a first plastic film glove having closed fingers and an open wrist portion attached to said support member about the outline of the glove in such fashion as to permit removal of the glove from the support member by mechanically pulling without damaging the glove;

c. a plastic film sheath superimposed over said glove and secured to said support member along a primary seal line surrounding said glove, said sheath including at least one free end portion extending beyond said primary seal line; and

d. secondary seal lines extending transverse to said primary seal line surrounding said glove proximate said free end portion for limiting and directing the tear line created when said free end is pulled beyond the elastic limit of the film so as to expose said wrist portion.

8. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 7 wherein said flexible support member is a sheet of paper.

9. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 7 wherein said glove is formed of two sheets of heat sealable plastic material having a thickness in the range of 0.0005 inch to 0.007 inch.

10. The article of manufacture in accordance with claim 7 wherein said free end portion is located near said wrist portion.
Description



BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

A considerable part of the expense of supplying sterile gloves to the medical field is the cost of packaging the glove. The present invention relates to a glove formed on a support web to which is applied a protective cover sheet thus defining a sealed pouch containing the glove. Such gloves are employed for medical examination purposes and inevitably become contaminated in use. It is desirable to have a disposal method which avoids contamination and which also provides a convenient means for disposing of frequently esthetically offensive gloves.

Accordingly, it is a principal object of this invention to provide a plastic glove removably supported on a flexible substrate enclosed by a flexible plastic film sheath sealed to the substrate along a line surrounding the glove.

A further object is to provide a plastic film glove-package which provides a pouch for receiving the glove after initial removal therefrom.

These and other objects, features and advantages of the invention will, in part, be pointed out with particularity and will, in part, become obvious from the following more detailed description of the invention, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing, which forms an integral part thereof.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

In the various figures of the drawing like reference characters designate like parts.

In the drawing:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a glove in its integral pouch;

FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 but partially broken away;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along line 3--3 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the pouch employed as a receptacle; and

FIG. 5 is a schemation view showing of an apparatus for making the integral glove pouch.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring now to FIG. 1, there is shown a pouch 10 containing a glove 12 sealed therein. In FIGS. 2 and 3 there is shown the various layers of material comprising the article. A support web 14 which may be a paper sheet has impressed thereon two layers of plastic film 16, 17 sealed along an outline 18 defining a glove. There is a plastic film cover sheet 20 heat sealed along line 22. The corners 24, 25 are left unsealed as pull tabs so that the package may be opened. Bar welds 26, 27 serve to direct the tearing off of a strip of the plastic cover sheet to open the pouch.

Once the pouch is open the hand is readily inserted into the glove since the glove is supported upon the substrate.

It is contemplated that after the package is completed it be gas sterilized. For long term protection the substrate may be polyethylene coated or otherwise sealed on the face away from the glove. The side of the substrate supporting the glove should be left uncoated so that the glove be readily removable from the substrate.

The empty pouch 10' may be used to receive used gloves 12' as shown in FIG. 4.

Suitable materials include paper for the substrate and preferably opaque polyethylene or polythylene copolymer film having a thickness of about 0.0005 inch to 0.007 inch thick.

In FIG. 5 there is shown an apparatus for carrying the invention. This apparatus is disclosed and claimed in the copending application of William Baab, Ser. No. 346,740, filed Apr. 2, 1973, and assigned to the common assignee of this application.

Turning now specifically to FIG. 5, there is shown the apparatus that is used forming the improved article of manufacture of the present invention. A first web 14 of a flexible moisture absorbent material, such as paper that is adapted to form a support layer, is passed over a tension roller 32 which is suitably journaled for rotation. The web of paper 14 then passes over and almost completely around a lay-on roller 34 that is rotatably mounted on a pivotally supported arm 36. The roller 34 applies the paper to the peripheral surface of a carrier such as a drum 38 that is adapted to rotate about an axle 40. Suitable means such as a motor (not shown) may be used for driving the drum 38.

Concurrently with the feeding of the paper web 14, a pair of heat sealable, thermoplastic film layers 16 and 17, typically between 0.0005 and 0.007 inch thick, are passed through a plurality of tension rollers 46a, 46b and 46c that transport the two layers 16 and 17 to an adjustable lay-on roller 48 which is pivotally mounted on an arm 50. Spring means 52 bias the roller 48 in the direction towards the peripheral surface of the drum 38 so that both film layers 16 and 17 are pressed downwardly on the surface of the paper web 14.

While the drum 38 rotates the paper layer 14 and the film layers 16 and 17 are carried by the peripheral surface thereof past a die member 54 that is provided with selected heated portions in the shape of the desired article. In the embodiment described herein the heated portions of the die member 54 will have the shape of the glove 12 shown in FIG. 1. When the film layers 16 and 17 are passed between the peripheral surfaces of the rotating die member 54 and the drum 38, the heat from the die member will heat seal the two layers 16 and 17 only along the lines designated 18 in FIG. 2 to thereby form the gloves. A roller 56 that is adapted to apply a suitable mold release agent such as silicone may be provided in contact with the peripheral surface of the heated die member 54.

Immediately downstream of the heated die member 54, in the direction of rotation of the drum member 38, there is provided a film and paper support roller 58 that serves to retain the formed gloves 12 on the surface of the paper web 14. The remainder of the material of the film layers 16 and 17, which does not form the glove 18, is removed by a scrap removal system generally designated by the reference character 60 which is adapted to apply suction to the non-formed plastic layers.

Still another layer of heat sealable thermoplastic material 20, typically between 0.0005 and 0.007 inch thick, is applied to the moving drum 38 subsequent to the formation of the glove 16, as described hereinabove. It is convenient to provide the web 20 from a source 64. The web 20 passes over a tension roller 68 and then an adjustable film lay-on roller 70 that is pivotally supported on an arm 72. Thus, as shown in FIG. 3, the web 20 is positioned over the formed glove 16. Immediately downstream of the film lay-on roller 70 there is provided another die member 74 having a heated portion that is adapted to form the continuous seal lines 22 shown in FIG. 1. If desired, a roller 76 that is adapted to carry a supply of a mold release agent such as silicone may be placed in contact with the peripheral surface of the second heated die member 74. A support roller 78 immediately downstream of the die member 74 maintains the layers of plastic film 16, 17 and 20 against the paper web 14.

A sensor 80, a pair of draw rollers 82 and 84 and cut-off means 86 and 88 are provided downstream of the support roller 78 in order to separate each of the articles 10 from the remainder of their respective webs. Conventional stacking means (not shown) may also be provided for collecting the cut-off articles 10.

There has been disclosed heretofore the best embodiment of the invention presently contemplated. However, it is to be understood that various changes and modifications may be made thereto without departing from the spirit of the invention.

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