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Patent: To Adjust Your Crutch.
Patent: To Adjust Your Crutch. | aust_txbz, Hector Mark Estrada Jr., patent, 8234063, Multi-Stage,collapsible,crutch,

Hector Mark Estrada Jr. of Austin recently received U.S. Patent 8,235,063 for “Multi-Stage Collapsible Crutch.”

Texas Business Patent of the Day:  An Austin man has devised an new type of crutch.

Hector Mark Estrada Jr. of Austin recently received U.S. Patent 8,235,063 for “Multi-Stage Collapsible Crutch.”

Estrada applied for this patent more than five years ago on June 21, 2007.

Estrada’s  invention relates generally to an orthopedic device and, more specifically, to multi-stage collapsible crutch, according to the patent documents.

A crutch is an orthopedic device that supports a person's weight to facilitate walking when the person has injured a leg or ankle. Typically, a crutch is constructed of one or more pieces of wood or metal, is a fixed length, includes a concave surface upon which the user places their underarm for support and is a fixed size with respect to the length and the distance between the concave, support surface and a handle where the user's hand grips the crutch.

One issue that arises with respect to this typical type of crutch is that, although the crutch is a fixed length, people come in a variety of heights and proportions, in other words, crutches of multiple sizes and proportions must be manufactured and individually fitted to specific users both to address differences in height and leg and arm length among users.

A second issue is that, as a person walks with a crutch, the force of the crutch striking the ground is transferred to the underarm of the user. The repeated shock associated with the end of the crutch striking the ground may aggravate an existing injury or even cause a new injury. 
 
The current state of the art does not provide a crutch that is adjustable for users of different heights and proportions and mitigates the affect of the crutch striking the ground. In addition, current technology does not provide a crutch that collapses to a short length to facilitate storage and shipment. 

Estrada devised a crutch that is able to be collapsed for ease of storage and shipment, adjustable for users of different heights and proportions and mitigates the effect of the crutch repeatable striking the ground. 

A support surface, or "saddle support," is coupled to two rails that extend and slide through a handgrip and a wishbone structure, or "wishbone."

The handgrip enables the user to hold onto the crutch. Both the handgrip and the wishbone may be secured with respect to the rails in a variety of positions, enabling the distance between the support surface and the handgrip to be adjusted to the height and proportions of different users. The secured position of the rails within the wishbone also affects the overall length of the crutch. In addition, the rails may be positioned in the wishbone such that the support surface fits against the wishbone. In this configuration, the crutch is compact and takes up the least possible space to facilitate storage and shipment. 

A support, or shock, tube extends and slides through the wishbone. The shock tube extends from the wishbone to the ground and may be secured in a variety of positions, thus enabling the user a second means to adjust the length of the crutch. Like the rails, the shock tube may be positioned such that the overall length of the crutch is minimized for ease of storage and shipment. The shock tube includes one or more shock absorbing devices such as but not limited to springs and a shock-absorbing tip to mitigate the stress caused to the user from the crutch repeatable striking the ground.