Therapeutic vibrator
United States Patent 2235184

This invention relates to a mechanical vibrating device which is used for therapeutic treatment. It is an object of the present invention to provide a vibratory device which is fully adjustable to vary the severity and direction of application of the vibratory Impulses, so that the numerous...

Wettlaufer, William L.
Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Wettlaufer, William L.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
248/611, 601/65, 601/90
International Classes:
A61H1/00; A61H23/02
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This invention relates to a mechanical vibrating device which is used for therapeutic treatment.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a vibratory device which is fully adjustable to vary the severity and direction of application of the vibratory Impulses, so that the numerous ailments which respond to such treatment may be treated in an individual manner by the attending physician.

A further object of the invention is to provide a simple and mechanically efficient structure having a minimum of working parts, so that service troubles may be largely eliminated and the device may be of sufficiently low weight to be easily portable.

Other features and advantages of the invention are more fully set forth in the specification and accompanying drawing, wherein: Fig. 1 Is a front elevation of the vibrating stool with a portion broken away to show the structure of the adjustable vibrator element; Fig. 2 is a side elevation thereof, with portions similarly broken away; Fig. 3 is a fragmentary sectional view through the top supporting structure of a further embodiment of the invention.

The invention may be formed as a stool or bench 10, including a base II and a top or seat 12 upon which the patient may be positioned to receive a vibratory treatment. Two opposite sides 13 of the base are formed with inwardly extending flanges 14 which contain shallow grooves 15 for receiving cylindrical sections of heavy rubber tubing 16. The top 12 is formed with corresponding grooves 17, so that the tubing serves as a resilient support for the top. The top is additionally provided with depending rails 18, which serve as supports for removably attached strips 20. It will be observed in Fig. 2 that the strips underlie the base flanges 14, and that both the strips and the flanges contain grooves 21 and 22 for receiving a second set of tubes 23.

The tubes 16 and 23 are confined under some initial compression, and it will be apparent that the tubes 16 will support any load placed on the top 12, while the tubes 23 and associated structure connect the top and base as a unit. The tubes 16 and 23 abut the ends of the grooves, as indicated by the numerals 24, 25 in Fig. 1, and thus the tubes additionally support the top against lateral displacement as viewed in that figure.

A vibrating unit 27 is carried directly by the top 12, and it includes a pair of spaced brackets 28, 29, which are secured to the under side of the top by screws 30. The brackets are formed with horizontally aligned apertures 31 and 32 respectively, which contain bushings 33. An electric motor 34 is disposed between the brackets, and its frame is supplied with trunnions 35, 36, which are received in the bushings 33. Washers 37 are disposed on opposite ends of the bushings 33, and they and the bushings are preferably formed of hard rubber or a similar material which may prevent chattering of the trunnions in their supports.

The trunnions 35, 36 are threaded at their extremities to receive clamping nuts 38, 39, which may be tightened sufficiently to cause a good frictional engagement between the motor and brackets and the interposed washers 37.

The shaft 40 of the motor 34 carries an attached flywheel 41, which flywheel is preferably formed with an angularly displaced rim 42. The flywheel may additionally be eccentrically balanced,-for example, by an attached small weight 43.

The motor 34 may be adjustably positioned about its supports under control from the exterior of the stool 10, and the mechanism for obtaining this movement may be of any suitable type. In the present instance, a worm and worm wheel unit is supplied, the wheel 45 being slidably keyed to the trunnion 35, as indicated at 46. Spaced horizontally aligned bearings 47, 47a are formed on the bracket 28, and such bearings receive an adjusting shaft 48, which in turn carries a worm 50.

The shaft 48 extends through a bushing 51 located in one of the sides 52 of the base 11, and the projecting end of the shaft is supplied with an operating crank 53.

Stop pins 54, 55 are fastened in the worm wheel 45, and they are engageable with the bearings 47, 47a, when the motor is adjusted to a horizontal position in either direction, as viewed in Fig. 1.

In Fig. 3, a modified form of supporting structure is provided wherein a plurality of rubber spheres 56 and 57 are substituted for the tubes 16 and 23. Thus, instead of the grooves of the first embodiment, a plurality of shallow sockets 58 are formed in the top 12 and underlying flange structure 14,,21, to receive such spheres.

In the operation of therapeutic devices of this nature, it has been found highly desirable to control the severity and direction of application of the vibratory impulses. In the present device, the seat is directly attached to the vibratory unit, and thus the adjustment of the unit to different radial 5£ positions has a direct influence on the operation of the seat. The actual movement of the seat during each impulse or vibratory cycle is circular or elliptical in character, and the axis of such circular movement is largely dependent on the position of the vibratory unit, whose dynamically unbalanced flywheel 41 transmits radial and thrust forces to the seat through the mounting and supporting structure of the motor. It will be apparent, when the vibrating unit is moved through the first 90 degrees of adjustment, that an axial change in the vibratory circles takes place, which adjustment effect may be duplicated during the next 90 degrees of adjustment. It will be observed, however, that when the vibratory unit is move .from one angular position to another relative to the vertical position shown in Fig. 1, that a second change takes place, 1. e., the direction of rotation of the flywheel 41 is reversed relative to the overlying top 12, and thus the directional effect of the vibratory circles may be reversed.

It will now be apparent that a patient either seated or reclining on the device may be given a vibratory treatment which may be modified in severity or character by manipulation of the adjusting handle 53, and that further, the relative directional effects of the treatment may be reversed by adjusting the vibratory unit from one 90 degree zone to the next.

It is not intended that the invention be limited to the specific embodiments herein shown, as it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various changes may be made without departing from the inventive concept, as set forth in the following claims.

I claim: 1. In a therapeutic vibrator, a base, a seat resiliently carried by the base, an electric motor to having a vibratory element secured to its shaft, said motor being formed with trunnions disposed laterally with respect to its shaft, said trunnions having axes substantially parallel to said seat, depending bearing means carried by the seat for rotatably receiving said trunnions, a driving mechanism for rotating said trunnions and accompanying motor, a manually operable driving shaft for said mechanism, and a bearing on the base through which the free end of said manually operable driving shaft extends. 2. In a therapeutic vibrator, a base, a seat, a pair of elongated cylindrical rubber elements mounted in spaced relation on the base to support said seat, said seat being formed with depending members having portions underlying a part of said base, similar rubber elements interposed between said portions and said base, and motor driven means for vibrating said seat on its rubber elements.

3. In a therapeutic vibrator, a base having spaced horizontal flanges, each flange being formed with shallow grooves in its upper and lower faces, a seat formed with similar grooves, a pair of elongated cylindrical rubber elements positioned in the upper grooves of the flanges, said elements being also received in the grooves of said seat, a pair of depending flanged members on the seat, said members having horizontal portions disposed beneath the base flanges, a second pair of cylindrical rubber elements disposed in the grooves in the lower faces of the base flanges, said second pair of cylindrical rubber elements being engaged by the horizontal portions of the seat members, and motor driven means for vibrating said seat on its rubber elements. s0 S.4. In a therapeutic vibrator, a base, spaced cylindrical rubber members mounted in parallelism on said base, a seat supported on the rubber members of said base, means for holding the seat against displacement from said members, 85 a vibratory unit including a motor and a dynamically unbalanced flywheel carried by the motor shaft, means on the under side of the seat for mounting the motor for rotary adjustment on an axis perpendicular to the motor shaft axis, said mounting axis being also parallel to the seat and disposed laterally with respect to the rubber mounting members.