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Claims for Patent: 8,888,745

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Claims for Patent: 8,888,745

Title:Applicator for inserting an implant
Abstract: The invention pertains to an applicator (1) for inserting an implant, in particular a rod-like implant (2) containing an active substance, under the skin of a human or animal, comprising a housing (3), a cannula (6) extending from the housing (3), and a handle (15) for grasping and maneuvering the applicator (1) and the cannula (6) during insertion of an implant (2). In accordance with the invention, the handle (15) extends above at least part of the length of the cannula (6). Such a handle facilitates insertion of the cannula and/or accurate positioning of the implant.
Inventor(s): Van Der Graaf; Iris Epkjen Hobo (Deventer, NL), Tak; Maurice Petrus Wilhelmus (Hengelo, NL), Schmidt; Juergen (Herten, DE), Vertegaal; Hendricus Johannes (Hengelo, NL)
Assignee: Merck Sharp & Dohme B.V. (Haarlem, NL)
Application Number:11/795,796
Patent Claims: 1. Applicator for inserting an implant under the skin of a human or animal, comprising a housing, a cannula having an insertion length extending outside the housing, a rod extendable at least partially inside the cannula, and a handle for grasping and maneuvering the applicator and the cannula during insertion of an implant, wherein at least a portion of the housing is cantilevered over the cannula to form the handle, which cantilevered portion of the housing extends along in spaced, substantially parallel relation to at least part of said insertion length that extends outside the housing and said cantilevered portion of the housing has a width in a direction perpendicular to the insertion length of the cannula, said width of said cantilevered portion increasing over at least part of the cantilevered portion in a direction along the insertion length of the cannula to form respective side surfaces, said width being substantially larger than a diameter of the cannula to enable the handle to be gripped by a user, and wherein the cannula is retractable into the housing by sliding the cannula relative to the rod for expelling the implant.

2. Applicator according to claim 1, wherein the handle extends along at least 30% of said length.

3. Applicator according to claim 1, wherein a top surface of the handle is raised relative to the rest of the housing.

4. Applicator for inserting an implant under the skin of a human or animal, comprising a housing, a cannula having an insertion length extending outside the housing, a handle for grasping and maneuvering the applicator and the cannula during insertion of an implant, a cannula holder, a rod mounted on or in the housing and at least partially inside the cannula or the cannula holder, and an actuator for sliding the cannula and the rod relative to each other, wherein at least a portion of the handle is cantilevered above the cannula and located to extend along in spaced, substantially parallel relation to at least part of said insertion length that extends outside the housing and wherein the actuator is located on said cantilevered handle portion and moveable with respect to the cantilevered handle portion for sliding the cannula.

5. Applicator according to claim 4, wherein, when an implant is present in the cannula, the actuator is located over the cannula.

6. Applicator according to claim 4, wherein the cannula holder is provided at a proximal end of the cannula and is slidable over the rod, and wherein the actuator and the holder are interconnected by a flexible element.

7. Applicator according to claim 6, wherein the flexible element is at least partially retained by guides.

8. Applicator according to claim 1, comprising a lever extending along at least part of the cannula, which lever is rotatable or slidable or flexible between a first position wherein the implant is secured inside the cannula or the cannula holder and a second position wherein the implant is no longer secured inside the cannula.

9. Applicator according to claim 8, wherein, in its first position, the lever at least partially covers the cannula.

10. In combination, an implant for insertion under the skin of a human or animal, and an applicator, the applicator comprising a housing, a cannula having an insertion length extending outside the housing, and a handle for grasping and maneuvering the applicator and the cannula during insertion of the implant, wherein the handle has a portion that extends along in spaced, substantially parallel relation to at least 80% of said entire cannula length that extends outside the housing and said handle portion has a width in a direction away from the cannula that is substantially greater than a thickness of the cannula enabling the handle portion to be gripped by a user, wherein the implant is an elongate rod-like element containing an active substance.

11. The combination according to claim 10, wherein the handle has side surfaces enabling the handle to be gripped by a user.

12. The combination according to claim 10, wherein a bending stiffness of said portion of the handle is greater than that of the cannula.

13. The combination according to claim 10, wherein prior to use, the implant is located within the cannula and secured against accidental removal therefrom.

14. The combination according to claim 13, wherein the implant is secured against accidental removal by a protrusion extending into the cannula, insertion of the cannula under the skin causing release of the implant by the protrusion.

15. The combination according to claim 10, further comprising a cannula holder, a rod mounted to the housing and extending at least partially inside the cannula or the cannula holder, and an actuator for sliding the cannula and the rod relative to each other.

16. The combination according to claim 15, wherein the cannula holder is provided at a proximal end of the cannula and is slidable over the rod, and wherein the actuator and the holder are interconnected by a flexible element.

17. The combination according to claim 10, wherein the active substance is a progestogenic hormone.

18. Applicator for inserting a rod-like contraceptive implant containing a progestogenic hormone, under the skin of a human or animal, comprising: a housing; a cannula having an insertion length extending outside the housing prior to use and during insertion of the implant under the skin, said cannula being movable with respect to the housing to enable retraction of the cannula by the user into the housing during use; an implant retained within the cannula prior to use; a rod for expelling the implant from the cannula when the cannula is retracted; and a handle for grasping and maneuvering the applicator and the cannula during insertion of the implant, wherein the handle extends along and is spaced from at least part of said cannula insertion length outside the housing in said prior to use position and during insertion of the implant.

19. The applicator according to claim 18 wherein the implant contains etonogestrel and measures 40 mm in length and 2 mm in diameter and wherein the handle extends along and spaced from substantially all of said length.

20. Applicator for inserting an implant under the skin of a human or animal, comprising a housing having a distal end, a proximal end and a hollow interior, a cannula extending from the interior of the housing at an intermediate position between the distal end and the proximal end and extending towards the distal end of the housing, a rod extendable into the cannula, the cannula being slidable relative to a rod for expelling the implant, wherein the housing comprises a handle portion for grasping and maneuvering the applicator and the cannula during insertion of an implant, the handle portion being provided on the housing between the intermediate position and the distal end and having respective side surfaces enabling the handle portion to be gripped by a user, the handle portion extending in spaced relation to the cannula along an insertion length of the cannula outside the housing, the side surfaces of the handle portion between the intermediate position and the distal end having a width in a direction perpendicular to said insertion length of the cannula, said width being substantially larger than a diameter of the cannula.
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