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Woman invents solutions for physically challenged people

Shared by Ana Duarte on 2019-05-30 14:54

About the solution

Bessie studied physiotherapy and industrial design. She went to work at Veterans’ Hospital Base 81, where she helped to rehabilitate World War II veterans, especially those who were disabled and trying to readapt to their lives stateside.

“You’re not crippled, only crippled in your mind,” she would tell them while teaching them how to write with their feet or their teeth.

But there were also amputated patients. One day, a doctor told her: “If you really want to do something to help these boys, why don’t you make something by which they can feed themselves”. And so she took action.

It took her ten months to create the first design of the “invalid feeder”, an electronic feeding tube for people who had lost limbs or were in bed or in a wheelchair. She worked at her kitchen, using plastic, a file, an ice pick, a hammer, and some dishes and boiling water to melt the plastic into a mold.

The tube would be attached to a food receptacle, which in turn was powered by a motor; every time the patient bit down on the tube, it would send a morsel of food zooming into their mouths. This allowed patients to control exactly how much to eat, and they could do so unassisted.

The device turned out to be so successful and Bessie patented it. Then she spent about four years and $3,000 making improvements, having invented a working model made of stainless steel, which she demonstrated at a New Jersey hospital.

As a serial innovator at heart, she didn’t stop there. Bessie also created “portable receptacle support”. It consisted of a bowl that the patient could strap around the neck to eat from, with the goal of being able to feed themselves, which she also patented. People with impairment of the use of hands and arms would be able to drink fluid from cups or bowls supported by the device.

Adapted from: https://bit.ly/2EI5VFk
https://bit.ly/2YVxuCr
https://nyti.ms/2WtlEOQ
https://bit.ly/30U88a1

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

About the author

Bessie Blount, born in the USA, in 1914, was a woman who invented feeding devices and taught amputee war veterans to write with their teeth and their feet.

Comments (1)

  • luciham20 Wed, 07/24/2019 - 14:06

    This post was very nicely written, and it also contains a lot of useful facts. I enjoyed your distinguished way of writing this post. rake monster

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