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Claims for Patent: 6,701,917

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Claims for Patent: 6,701,917

Title: Dose counter for medicament inhaler
Abstract:A new and improved inhaler includes an accurate and consistent mechanical dose metering system that dispenses dry powdered medicament in discrete amounts or doses for patient inhalation, a pressure relief system that manages pressure within a medicament reservoir of the inhaler to ensure consistently dispensed doses, and a dose counting system indicating the number of doses remaining in the inhaler.
Inventor(s): O'Leary; David (Essex, GB)
Assignee: Norton Healthcare, Ltd. (London, GB)
Application Number:09/888,198
Patent Claims: 1. A medicament inhaler comprising: a mouthpiece for patient inhalation; a dose meter including a pawl movable along a predetermined path during the metering of a dose of medicament to the mouthpiece; a dose counter including, a bobbin, a rotatable spool, a rolled ribbon received on the bobbin and rotatable about an axis of the bobbin, the ribbon having indicia thereon successively extending between a first end of the ribbon secured to the spool and a second end of the ribbon positioned on the bobbin, and teeth extending radially outwardly from the spool into the predetermined path of the pawl so that the spool is rotated by the pawl and the ribbon is advanced onto the spool during the metering of a dose.

2. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the spool rotates in a single direction.

3. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the dose counter includes a clutch spring secured to the spool and allowing rotation of the spool in a single direction.

4. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the indicia comprises numbers.

5. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the indicia are provided on a radially outwardly facing surface of the rolled ribbon.

6. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the predetermined path of the pawl is linear.

7. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the pawl moves in first and second directions along the predetermined path and is adapted to engage the teeth and advance the spool upon movement in the second direction.

8. An inhaler according to claim 1, further comprising a housing containing the dose counter and include a transparent window over the indicia of the ribbon.

9. An inhaler according to claim 1, further comprising a medicament reservoir including a dispensing port, and the dose meter meters a dose of medicament from the dispensing port to the mouthpiece.

10. An inhaler according to claim 9, wherein the reservoir is adapted to contain dry powdered medicament in bulk form.

11. An inhaler according to claim 1, wherein the indicia comprises numbers arranged to successively decrease as the ribbon is advanced onto the spool.

12. A medicament inhaler comprising: A. a housing having a case, a mouthpiece for patient inhalation, and a cover pivotally mounted to the case for covering the mouthpiece, said cover being movable between an opened position and a closed position; B. a dose counter received in said housing, said dose counter comprising: a bobbin, a rotatable spool, a rolled ribbon received on the bobbin and rotatable about an axis of the bobbin, the ribbon having indicia thereon successively extending between a first end of the ribbon secured to the spool and a second end of the ribbon positioned on the bobbin, teeth extending radially outwardly from the spool; and C. transmission means engaging with said cover and said teeth, such that said spool is rotated by said transmission means when said cover moves from an opened position to a closed position or moves from a closed position to an opened position.

13. A medicament inhaler according to claim 12, wherein said transmission means comprises at least one cam pivotally connected to said case and said cover, at least one yoke received within said case, said at least one yoke having at least one cam follower adapted for engaging with said cam, and a pawl extending from said yoke for engaging with said teeth.

14. A medicament inhaler according to claim 12 further comprising reverse rotation prevention means to prevent reverse rotation of said spool.
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