Title:
Pillow for use with wheelchair
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The pillow for use with a wheelchair provides a cushioned support for a wheelchair-bound user. The pillow for use with a wheelchair includes a cushion having opposed front and rear surfaces, with the rear surface being adapted for positioning on a support surface, such as the seat of the wheelchair. At least one strap having opposed first and second ends and a central portion is further provided, with the central portion being attached to the rear surface of the cushion. The first and second ends are free and extend from laterally opposed sides of the cushion. A releasable and adjustable fastener is provided for releasably securing the first end of the at least one strap to the respective second end thereof.



Inventors:
Lambert, Glynn D. (Augusta, GA, US)
Lambert, Allen (Augusta, GA, US)
Application Number:
12/289090
Publication Date:
04/22/2010
Filing Date:
10/20/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C27/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
TRETTEL, MICHAEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Glynn D. Lambert (Augusta, GA, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. A pillow for use with a wheelchair, comprising: a cushion having opposed front and rear surfaces, the rear surface being adapted for positioning on a support surface; at least one strap having opposed first and second ends and a central portion, the central portion being secured to the rear surface of the cushion, the first and second ends being free and extending from laterally opposed sides of the cushion; and means for releasably and adjustably fastening the first end of the at least one strap to the second end, the cushion being adapted for being strapped to a wheelchair-bound user's body.

2. The pillow for use with a wheelchair as recited in claim 1, wherein said means for releasably and adjustably securing the first end of said at least one strap to the second end thereof comprises mating hook and loop fasteners attached to opposite ends of said strap.

3. The pillow for use with a wheelchair as recited in claim 2, wherein said at least one strap comprises a pair of straps secured to the rear surface of said cushion.

4. The pillow for use with a wheelchair as recited in claim 3, wherein said pair of straps are positioned substantially parallel with respect to one another and are spaced apart.

5. The pillow for use with a wheelchair as recited in claim 1, wherein said cushion comprises: an outer cover; and filling material disposed within an open interior region defined by the outer cover.

6. The pillow for use with a wheelchair as recited in claim 1, wherein said at least one strap is elastic.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to pillows and cushions, and particularly to a pillow for use with a wheelchair that provides a cushioned support.

2. Description of the Related Art

Users of wheelchairs are susceptible to dermatological problems, such as pressure sores and the like. Skin which is subjected to high pressure, high temperatures, moisture build up, and shear over prolonged periods of time is susceptible to tissue stress and breakdown that can cause the formation of pressure sores. There is evidence that the presence of constant pressure on tissue combined with increasing temperature generates a proportional increase in pressure sore formation. It has been shown that increases in the moisture level generally follow rises in skin temperature, and that moisture is also a significant influence in the formation of pressure sores. Thus, cushions and pillows are often used in conjunction with wheelchairs in order to reduce skin temperature and moisture accumulation in the seating environment.

Stability of the wheelchair cushion is an important factor for the user's health and comfort. Stability, in this sense, generally refers to the ability of a cushion to maintain the cushion user in the same position as when the user was seated or, at least, to reduce movement of the user from the cushion (or reduce movement of the cushion with respect to the user). Many currently available cushions allow the user to slide, shift, or to rock from side to side during use of the wheelchair. Typically, providing stability in the user's pelvic area will improve stability throughout the lower portion of the user's body. Therefore, a cushion designed to improve the stability of the user, and to reduce the possibility of shifting of the cushion, within the wheelchair would be desirable.

Thus, a pillow for use with a wheelchair solving the aforementioned problems is desired.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The pillow for use with a wheelchair provides a cushioned support for a wheelchair-bound user. The pillow includes a cushion having opposed front and rear surfaces, with the rear surface being adapted for positioning on a support surface, such as the seat of the wheelchair. The cushion includes an outer cover, which receives a filler material, such as densified batting, therein.

At least one strap having opposed first and second ends and a central portion is further provided, with the central portion thereof being secured to the rear surface of the cushion. The first and second ends are free and extend from laterally opposed sides of the cushion. Preferably, a pair of straps are provided, with the pair of straps being positioned substantially parallel with respect to one another. The pair of straps are spaced apart, each with respect to the other, and each is preferably formed from an elastic material.

A releasable and adjustable fastener is provided for releasably securing the first end of each strap to the respective second end thereof. In use, the cushion is placed on the seat of the wheelchair with the rear surface of the cushion contacting the seat. The front surface thereof is adapted for supporting the user of the wheelchair. The first end of each strap is secured to the respective second end thereof, with each strap covering a portion of the user's body to secure the cushion to the user.

These and other features of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an environmental, perspective view of a pillow for use with a wheelchair according to the present invention, shown in use as a seat cushion.

FIG. 2 is a front perspective view of the pillow for use with a wheelchair according to the present invention, partially broken away to show details thereof.

FIG. 3 is a rear perspective view of the pillow for use with a wheelchair according to the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an environmental, perspective view of the pillow for use with a wheelchair according to the present invention, with the pillow being shown attached to the user's lower legs.

Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The pillow for use with a wheelchair is designated generally as 10 in the drawings. As shown in FIG. 1, the pillow 10 provides a cushioned support for a wheelchair-bound user. As best shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the pillow 10 includes a cushion 12 having opposed front and rear surfaces 24, 25, respectively, with the rear surface 25 being adapted for positioning on a support surface, such as the seat S of exemplary wheelchair W. The cushion 12 includes an outer cover, formed from the joining of front and rear panels 24, 25, which receives a filler material 26, such as densified batting, therein. One such exemplary batting material is manufactured under the mark Poly-FilĀ® NU-FoamĀ®. The outer cover is preferably formed from an absorbent and comfortable fabric.

At least one strap 14 having opposed first and second ends 16, 18, respectively, and a central portion 17 is further provided, with the central portion 17 thereof being secured to the rear surface 25 of the cushion 12 by stitching 28 or the like. The first and second ends 16, 18 are free and extend from laterally opposed sides of the cushion 12. Preferably, a pair of straps 14 are provided, with the pair of straps 14 being positioned substantially parallel with respect to one another, as best shown in FIG. 3. The pair of straps 14 are spaced apart, each with respect to the other, and each is preferably formed from an elastic material.

A releasable and adjustable fastener is provided for releasably securing the first end 16 of each strap 14 to the respective second end 18 thereof. Any suitable releasable and adjustable fastener may be used, such as hook and loop fasteners 20, 22. In use, the cushion 12 is placed on the seat S of the wheelchair W with the rear surface 25 of the cushion 12 contacting the seat S. The front surface 24 thereof is adapted for supporting the user of the wheelchair W. The first end 16 of each strap 14 is secured to the respective second end 18 thereof, with each strap 14 covering a portion of the user's body to secure the cushion 12 to the user.

In FIG. 1, the cushion 12 is shown positioned on seat S to support the user's buttocks and thighs. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 4, the cushion 12 may be strapped to the user's lower legs. It should be understood that the cushion may be releasably strapped to any suitable portion of the user's body and, further, may be used in conjunction with any support surface, rather than the exemplary wheelchair W shown in the Figures.

It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the embodiment described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.