(12) United States Patent ao) Patent No.: Us 7,901,418 B2
Danitz et al. (45) Date of Patent: Mar. 8,2011
(54) CLAMP HAVING BENDABLE SHAFT
(75) Inventors: David J. Danitz, Cupertino, CA (US);
David E. Hegeman, San Francisco, CA
(US); Adam C. Gold, San Francisco,
(73) Assignee: Vitalitec International, Inc., Plymouth,
( * ) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this patent is extended or adjusted under 35 U.S.C. 154(b) by 131 days.
(21) Appl.No.: 10/679,103
(22) Filed: Oct. 4, 2003
(65) Prior Publication Data
US 2004/0068280 Al Apr. 8, 2004
Related U.S. Application Data
(63) Continuation of application No. 10/013,207, filed on Dec. 7, 2001, now Pat. No. 6,638,287, which is a continuation-in-part of application No. 09/847,135, filed on May 2, 2001, now Pat. No. 6,544,274.
(51) Int. CI.
(52) U.S. CI 606/157
(58) Field of Classification Search 606/157,
606/158, 205, 206, 151, 123, 124, 125, 139,
606/141, 50, 57; 604/523, 524, 525, 535;
600/123, 124, 101; 248/276.1 See application file for complete search history.
(56) References Cited
A clamp has a handle assembly, a gripping assembly having a pair of jaws that can be opened and closed to grip an element, and a shaft assembly. The shaft assembly has a flexible shaft having a proximal end that is operatively coupled to the handle assembly and a distal end that is operatively coupled to the gripping assembly. The shaft assembly also has a rigid element that can be placed in a first position where the rigid element supports the shaft in a manner where the shaft cannot be bent, and in a second position where the shaft can be bent.
6 Claims, 28 Drawing Sheets