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Claims for Patent: 7,389,775

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Claims for Patent: 7,389,775

Title:Inhalation device
Abstract:An inhalation device is described for use with a medicament pack in which at least one container for medicament in powder form is defined between two sheets peelably secured to one another. The device comprises means for peeling the sheets apart at an opening station to open the container; and an outlet, communicating with the opened container, through which a user can inhale medicament in powder form from the opened container.
Inventor(s): Davies; Michael Birsha (Ware, GB), Hearne; David John (Luton, GB), Rand; Paul Kenneth (Letchworth, GB), Walker; Richard Ian (Ware, GB)
Assignee: Glaxo Group Limited (Greenford, GB)
Application Number:11/052,154
Patent Claims: 1. An inhalation device comprising a medicament pack which is configured as a strip having a length, said medicament pack comprising a plurality of containers which: are arranged along the length of the strip, and each contain an inhalable medicament powder; wherein the device further comprises: an outlet at which a user is able to inhale on the device; and an actuating mechanism which is adapted upon each user actuation of the device to act on the pack to open one of the containers and to move the pack into a position where said opened container is in flow communication with the outlet so that the medicament powder in the opened container is able to be entrained into the user's respiratory tract by user inhalation at the outlet; and wherein the actuating mechanism has: a resettable actuation member mounted for movement by a user from a first postion to a second postion to actuate the device and resettable to the first postion ready for movement back to the second postion for another actuation of the device; an opening mechanism associated with the resettable actuation member such that each user movement of the resettable actuation member from the first postion to the second postion is transmitted to the opening mechanism to cause the opening mechanism to open said one container; and an indexing mechanism associated with the resettable actuation member such that each user movement of the resettable actuation member from the first position to the second position is transmitted to the indexing mechanism to cause the indexing mechanism to index the opened container into flow communication with the outlet; and wherein the actuating mechanism is further adapted such that each resetting movement of the actuation member from the second postion to the first position is not transmitted to the opening and indexing mechanisms so that the pack remains stationary during said resetting movement.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein the containers are equi-spaced along the strip length.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein the spacing between the containers increases along the length of the strip.

4. The device of claim 1, wherein the strip is a blister strip.

5. The device of claim 1, wherein the strip comprises a pair of sheet structures which are sealed together in face-to-face relation with the containers being defined between the sheet structures.

6. The device of claim 5, wherein one of the sheet structures has pockets formed along its length and the other sheet structure covers the pockets, each covered pocket defining one of the containers.

7. The device of claim 1, wherein the containers have a lengthways dimension and a sideways dimension and wherein the lengthways dimension is smaller than the sideways dimension.

8. The device of claim 7, wherein a lengthways spacing between adjacent containers is less than the sideways dimension of the containers.

9. The device of claim 1, wherein the containers are elongate in a transverse direction to the strip length.

10. The device of claim 1 wherein the pack is flexible.

11. The device of claim 10 wherein said pack is in a roll state.

12. The device of claim 1, wherein the strip has a portion which is adapted in use to be separated lengthways from the strip to open the containers and wherein the opening mechanism is adapted to separate said portion lengthways from the strip.

13. The device of claim 12, wherein the separable portion is a first portion of the strip and the strip further has a second portion from which the first portion is separable, the containers being defined between the first and second portions.

14. The device of claim 13, wherein the second portion is formed with a series of recesses along its length in which the inhalable medicament powder is contained and the first portion provides a lid for each of the recesses.

15. The device of claim 12, wherein the separable portion has first and second ends which are spaced lengthways from one another and the separable portion is separable from the strip by drawing the first end lengthways along the strip towards the second end.

16. The device of claim 1, wherein each container has: a blind cavity with a closed end and an open end, and a lid over the open end for closure of the blind cavity to retain the inhalable medicament powder therein.

17. The device of claim 16, wherein the opening mechanism is adapted to separate the lids from the containers for opening thereof.

18. The device of claim 16, wherein the lids are provided in a first portion of the strip and the blind cavities are provided in a second portion of the strip.

19. The device of claim 18, wherein the opening mechanism is adapted to separate the first portion of the strip from the second portion to separate the lids from the containers for opening thereof.

20. The device of claim 19, wherein the first and second portions of the strip are oriented lengthways and the first portion is separable from the second portion lengthways by the opening mechanism.

21. The device of claim 1, wherein the outlet is a mouthpiece.

22. The device of claim 1, wherein the actuation member is manually-operable.

23. The device of claim 1, wherein the indexing mechanism comprises at least one rotatably-mounted member which engages the pack and which, upon each user actuation, rotates to index the opened container into flow communication with the outlet.

24. The device of claim 1, wherein the indexing mechanism comprises a rotatably-mounted winding wheel for winding up at least a part of the strip for strip advancement upon each user movement of the actuation member of the device from the first position to the second position.

25. The device of claim 24, wherein the winding wheel is adapted to advance the strip essentially the same amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position so that upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position the opened container is indexed in flow communication with the outlet.

26. The device of claim 25, wherein the winding wheel is adapted to rotate the same angular amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first postion to the second postion.

27. The device of claim 25, wherein the containers are equi-spaced along the strip length.

28. The device of claim 27, wherein the winding wheel is adapted to rotate the same angular amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position and to have an effective winding surface whose diameter remains essentially constant.

29. The device of claim 1. wherein the actuation member is associated to the opening and indexing mechanisms through a pawl-and-ratchet arrangement.

30. An inhalation device comprising a medicament pack which is configured as a strip having a length, said medicament pack comprising a plurality of containers which: are arranged along the length of the strip, and each contain an inhalable medicament powder; wherein the device further comprises: an outlet at which a user is able to inhale on the device; and an actuating mechanism which is adapted upon each user actuation of the device to act on the pack to open one of the containers and to move the pack into a postion where said opened container is in flow communication with the outlet so that the medicament powder in the opened container is able to be entrained into the user's respiratory tract by user inhalation at the outlet; and wherein the actuating mechanism has: a resettable actuation member pivotally mounted in the device for pivotal movement by a user from a first position to a second position to actuate the device and resettable by pivotal movement from the second position to the first position ready for pivotal movement back to the second position for another actuation of the device; an opening mechanism adapted upon each user pivotal movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position to open said one container; and an indexing mechanism adapted upon each user pivotal movement of the actuation member from the first postion to the second postion to index the opened container into flow communication with the outlet.

31. The device of claim 30, wherein the outlet is a mouthpiece.

32. The device of claim 30, wherein the actuation member is manually-operable.

33. The device of claim 30, wherein the indexing mechanism comprises at least one rotatably-mounted member which engages the pack and which, upon each user actuation, rotates to index the opened container into flow communication with the outlet.

34. The device of claim 30, wherein the indexing mechanism comprises a rotatably-mounted winding wheel for winding up at least a part of the strip for strip advancement upon each user movement of the actuation member of the device from the first postion to the second postion.

35. The device of claim 34. wherein the winding wheel is adapted to advance the strip essentially the same amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position so that upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first postion to the second position the opened container is indexed in flow communication with the outlet.

36. The device of claim 35, wherein the winding wheel is adapted to rotate the same angular amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first position to the second position.

37. The device of claim 35, wherein the containers are equi-spaced along the strip length.

38. The device of claim 37, wherein the winding wheel is adapted to rotate the same angular amount upon each user movement of the actuation member from the first postion to the second postion and to have an effective winding surface whose diameter remains essentially constant.

39. The device of claim 30, wherein the actuation member is associated to the opening and indexing mechanisms through a pawl-and-ratchet arrangement such that each resetting movement of the actuation member from the second position to the first position is not transmitted to the opening and indexing mechanisms so that the pack remains stationary during said resetting movement.
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