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Claims for Patent: 6,161,724

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Claims for Patent: 6,161,724

Title: Indicating device
Abstract:An indicating device for use with a dispensing device that dispenses metered dosages of a medicament from a container having a valve moveable between an open and closed position. In a preferred embodiment, the container is reciprocally moveable within the housing along a longitudinal axis. The housing preferably has a well adapted to receive a valve stem and an exhaust port. The well communicates with the port such that the metered dosage of medicament is dispensed through the port when the valve is moved to the open position. An indicator assembly comprises an indicator member that includes dosage indicia visible to a user. In a preferred embodiment, the indicator assembly is provided in an indicator module. A method for dispensing measured dosages is also provided, along with a kit capable of being assembled as an inhalation device. A delivery system having a key member and a key entry passageway is also provided.
Inventor(s): Blacker; Richard (London, CA), Engelbreth; Daniel K. (London, CA), Schmidt; James N. (London, CA)
Assignee: 1263152 Ontario Inc. (London, CA)
Application Number:09/149,708
Patent Claims: 1. An indicating device for a dispenser that dispenses metered dosages of a substance from a container having a valve moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing said metered dosage when said valve is moved to the open position, said indicating device comprising:

a housing comprising at least one engagement member;

a plurality of indicator members coaxially mounted in said housing and comprising at least a first and second indicator member, at least one of said first and second indicator members having dosage indicia, at least one of said first and second indicator members comprising an advancement member and at least the other of said first and second indicator members comprising a plurality of teeth, wherein said engagement member is selectively engaged with said advancement member, wherein said engagement member biases said advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said at least the other of said first and second indicator members as said first indicator member is rotated relative to said second indicator member, whereby said advancement member causes said second indicator member to rotate an incremental amount.

2. The invention of claim 1 further comprising an actuator member mounted in said housing and responsive to said movement of said valve, and wherein said first indicator member comprises a plurality of teeth, said actuator member adapted to selectively engage at least one of said plurality of teeth on said first indicator member so as to advance said first indicator member an incremental amount in response to said movement of said valve.

3. The invention of claim 2 further comprising a spring disposed in said housing and adapted to bias said actuator member into engagement with said container.

4. The invention of claim 1 further comprising a third indicator member coaxially mounted in said housing with said first and second indicator members, wherein at least one of said second and third indicator members comprises a second advancement member and at least the other of said second and third indicator members comprises a plurality of teeth, and said housing further comprising at least a second engagement member, wherein said second engagement member is selectively engaged with said second advancement member, wherein said second engagement member biases said second advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said at least said other of said second and third indicator members as said second indicator member is rotated relative to said third indicator member, whereby said advancement member causes said third indicator member to rotate an incremental amount.

5. The invention of claim 1 wherein said housing further comprises at least one non-return member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of said teeth of at least one of said plurality of indicator members.

6. The invention of claim 5 wherein said engagement member and said non-return member are integrally formed as a single member.

7. The invention of claim 1 wherein said engagement member comprises a ramped surface.

8. The invention of claim 1 wherein said engagement member comprises a resilient arm member extending from said housing.

9. The invention of claim 1 wherein said housing comprises a first housing disposed in a second housing, wherein said plurality of indicator members are mounted in said first housing and wherein said second housing is adapted to support said container .

10. The invention of claim 1 wherein said housing comprises a dispenser housing adapted to support said container.

11. The invention of claim 1 wherein said housing comprises a viewing window, said indicia exposed to the user in said viewing window.

12. The invention of claim 1 wherein at least one of said indicator members comprises an indicator wheel having a circumferential surface, said dosage indicia applied to said circumferential surface.

13. The invention of claim 12 wherein said at least one of said plurality of indicator members further comprises a ratchet gear coaxially mounted with said indicator wheel and attached thereto, said ratchet gear comprising said plurality of teeth.

14. The invention of claim 1 wherein at least one of said indicator members comprises an indicator wheel having a circumferential skirt.

15. The invention of claim 14 wherein said advancement member is formed from a portion of said circumferential skirt.

16. The invention of claim 14 wherein said advancement member is disposed radially inward from said circumferential skirt.

17. The invention of claim 1 wherein said advancement member includes a tooth portion adapted to engage said at least one of said plurality of teeth of said adjacent indicator member.

18. The invention of claim 1 further comprising a key member having a key portion, said key member adapted to be mounted to said container, and wherein said housing comprises a passageway shaped to receive said key portion.

19. An indicator module adapted to be received within a dispenser housing, said indicator module comprising:

a module housing dimensioned to be received within said dispenser housing; and

a plurality of indicator members rotatably and coaxially mounted in said module housing, each of said indicator members comprising dosage indicia.

20. The invention of claim 19 further comprising an actuator member adapted to engage a container having a valve moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing a metered dosage of medicament when said valve is moved to the open position, said actuator member moveable within said module housing and selectively engaged with at least one of said indicator members to move said at least one indicator member in response to the movement of said valve.

21. The invention of claim 20 further comprising a spring disposed within said module housing and engaging said actuator member so as to bias said actuator member upwardly within said module housing.

22. The invention of claim 19 wherein said module housing comprises a first and second member joined to form an enclosure.

23. The invention of claim 19 further comprising a viewing window formed in said module housing.

24. The invention of claim 19 wherein said module housing has a key entry passageway formed therein, and further comprising a key member having a key portion, wherein said key portion is received in said key entry passageway.

25. The invention of claim 19 wherein said plurality of indicator members comprises at least a first and second indicator member, wherein at least one of said first and second indicator members comprises an advancement member and at least the other of said first and second indicator members comprises a plurality of teeth, and wherein said module housing comprises an engagement member, wherein said engagement member is selectively engaged with and biases said advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said other of said first and second indicator member as said first indicator member is rotated relative to said second indicator member.

26. The invention of claim 25 further comprising a third indicator member coaxially mounted in said module housing with said first and second indicator members, wherein at least one of said second and third indicator members comprises an advancement member and at least the other of said second and third indicator members comprises a plurality of teeth, and said module housing further comprising at least a second engagement member, wherein said second engagement member is selectively engaged with and biases said advancement member of said at least one of said second and third indicator members into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said other of said second and third indicator members as said second indicator member is rotated relative to said third indicator member, whereby said advancement member causes said third indicator member to rotate an incremental amount.

27. The invention of claim 25 wherein said module housing further comprises at least one non-return member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said at least said other of said plurality of indicator members.

28. The invention of claim 27 wherein said engagement member and said non-return member are integrally formed as a single member.

29. The invention of claim 25 wherein said engagement member comprises a ramped surface.

30. The invention of claim 25 wherein said engagement member comprises a resilient arm member extending from said module housing.

31. The invention of claim 25 wherein at least one of said indicator members comprises an indicator wheel having a circumferential skirt, wherein said advancement member is formed from a portion of said circumferential skirt.

32. The invention of claim 31 wherein said advancement member is disposed radially inward from said circumferential skirt.

33. An indicating device for a dispenser that dispenses metered dosages of a medicament from a container having a valve moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing said metered dosage when said valve is moved to the open position, said indicating device comprising:

a housing;

a plurality of indicator members coaxially mounted in said housing and comprising at least a first and second indicator member; and

means for advancing said second indicator member relative to said first indicator member.

34. The invention of claim 33 wherein said housing is adapted to moveably support said container, and further comprising means for advancing said first indicator member in response to the movement of said container relative to said housing.

35. The invention of claim 33 wherein said means for advancing is disposed in an indicator module, said indicator module disposed in said housing.

36. An indicating device for a dispensing device that dispenses metered dosages of a medicament from a container having a valve stem extending longitudinally therefrom and moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing said metered dosage when said valve stem is moved to the open position, said indicating device comprising:

a housing adapted to move relative to said container as said container is moved between said open and closed positions;

a plurality of indicator members coaxially and rotatably mounted in said housing, each of said indicator members comprising indicia applied to a circumferential surface thereof and visible to the user, said plurality of indicator members selectively and operably connected such that successive movements of said container relative to said housing causes at least one of said indicator members to rotate, whereby said indicia visible to the user is changed to indicate the dispensing of at least one metered dosage.

37. The invention of claim 36 wherein said housing comprises a module housing disposed in a dispenser housing, said dispenser housing adapted to moveably support the container.

38. The invention of claim 36 wherein said housing comprises a dispenser housing adapted to support the container.

39. The invention of claim 36 wherein said plurality of indicator members comprises at least a first and second indicator member, said first indicator member selectively and operably engaged with said second indicator member upon successive rotations of said first indicator member so as to rotate said second indicator member an incremental amount for each successive rotation of said first indicator member.

40. The invention of claim 39 further comprising an actuator member operably engaged with said container, wherein said actuator member rotates said first indicator member an incremental amount in response to said movement of said container relative to said housing.

41. A dispenser for dispensing metered dosages of a substance from a container having a valve moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing said metered dosage when said valve is moved to the open position, said dispenser comprising:

a dispenser housing shaped to receive the container;

an indicator housing disposed in said dispenser housing, said indicator housing comprising at least one engagement member;

a plurality of indicator members coaxially mounted in said indicator housing and comprising at least a first and second indicator member, said first and second indicator members comprising dosage indicia, said first indicator member comprising an advancement member and said second indicator member comprising a plurality of teeth, said engagement member intermittently engaged with said advancement member, wherein said engagement member biases said advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said second indicator member as said first indicator member is rotated relative to said second indicator member.

42. The invention of claim 41 wherein said first indicator member comprises a plurality of teeth and further comprising an actuator member moveably mounted to said indicator housing, said actuator member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said first indicator member.

43. The invention of claim 41 wherein said plurality of indicator members further comprises a third indicator member coaxially mounted with said first and second indicator members in said indicator housing, said third indicator member comprising a plurality of teeth, and wherein said second indicator member comprises a second advancement member, and wherein said indicator housing further comprises a second engagement member, said second engagement member intermittently engaged with said second advancement member, wherein said second engagement member biases said second advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said third indicator member as said second indicator member is rotated relative to said third indicator member.

44. The invention of claim 41 wherein said first and second indicator members comprise indicator wheels, and wherein said advancement member comprises a curved resilient portion terminating in an end portion, wherein said end portion operably engages at least one of said plurality of teeth on said second indicator wheel.

45. The invention of claim 41 wherein said engagement member comprises a ramped surface.

46. The invention of claim 41 wherein said engagement member comprises a resilient member extending from said indicator housing.

47. The invention of claim 41 wherein said engagement member further defines a non-return member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said second indicator member.

48. The invention of claim 41 wherein said dispenser housing has a cavity and comprises a top portion having an opening dimensioned to receive said container and a bottom portion comprising an exhaust port, wherein said opening provides access to said cavity, and wherein said indicator housing is disposed in said cavity in said bottom portion of said dispenser housing.

49. The invention of claim 48 wherein said bottom portion further comprises a support block extending upwardly into said cavity, wherein said support block comprises an orifice in flow communication with said exhaust port, wherein said module housing is disposed in said cavity adjacent said support block without blocking said orifice.

50. A dispenser for dispensing metered dosages of a substance from a container having a valve moveable between a closed position and an open position, said container dispensing said metered dosage when said valve is moved to the open position, said dispenser comprising:

a dispenser housing comprising a bottom, a top, a wall defining a longitudinally extending cavity open at said top, and a support block extending from said bottom into said cavity, wherein said support block is spaced from said wall;

an indicator housing at least a portion of which is disposed in said cavity between said support block and said wall; and

a plurality of indicator members coaxially mounted in said indicator housing and comprising at least a first and second indicator member, said first and second indicator members comprising dosage indicia.

51. The invention of claim 50 wherein said indicator housing comprises at least one engagement member and wherein said first indicator member comprises an advancement member and said second indicator member comprises a plurality of teeth, said engagement member intermittently engaged with said advancement member, wherein said engagement member biases said advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said second indicator member as said first indicator member is rotated relative to said second indicator member.

52. The invention of claim 51 wherein said first indicator member comprises a plurality of teeth and further comprising an actuator member moveably mounted to said indicator housing, said actuator member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said first indicator member.

53. The invention of claim 51 wherein said plurality of indicator members further comprises a third indicator member coaxially mounted with said first and second indicator members in said indicator housing, said third indicator member comprising a plurality of teeth, and wherein said second indicator member comprises a second advancement member, and wherein said indicator housing further comprises a second engagement member, said second engagement member intermittently engaged with said second advancement member, wherein said second engagement member biases said second advancement member into operable engagement with at least one of said plurality of teeth on said third indicator member as said second indicator member is rotated relative to said third indicator member.

54. The invention of claim 51 wherein said first and second indicator members comprise indicator wheels, and wherein said advancement member comprises a curved resilient portion terminating in an end portion, wherein said end portion operably engages at least one of said plurality of teeth on said second indicator wheel.

55. The invention of claim 51 wherein said engagement member comprises a ramped surface.

56. The invention of claim 51 wherein said engagement member comprises a resilient member extending from said indicator housing.

57. The invention of claim 51 wherein said engagement member further defines a non-return member selectively engaged with at least one of said plurality of teeth of said second indicator member.

58. The invention of claim 50 wherein said module housing comprises a first and second member connected to form an enclosure.
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