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Author Topic: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray  (Read 4687 times)

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Offline GSchnitzer

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#20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« on: January 19, 2008, 01:34:59 pm »
Well, it's not quite as ubiquitous as a communicator, phaser, or tricorder, but it almost is. 

Dr. McCoy's hypo spray was used in a lot of episodes--not only in Sickbay scenes, of course, but on landing parties, too.  (It was one of the pieces of equipment he would carry in his various Medical Pouches.)

The first time we see a hypo spray device is in "Where No Man Has Gone Before:"



There are actually two styles of hypo sprayers.  The first style (used throughout the first season) is a "sleeve" style injector.  The length of the device remains rigid and the device doesn't telescope into itself.  Instead, there is a hand-grip sleeve that slides up and down the main shaft of the device.  Aside from "Where No Man Has Gone Before," the first regular production episode to use this "sleeve" type of hypo is "The Enemy Within."  Mister Spock uses it to inject the "evil" space dog to sedate it in preparation for reintegration with the dog's other half via the transporter:



The second style of hypo--seen in the second and third seasons--actually telescopes.  Ostensibly, it looks nearly identical to the "sleeve" style hypo.  It consists of a somewhat pointy "business end," a plunger and a detachable/replaceable vial of "medication" fluid at the rear.  Although this is a shot of the first type of hypo, here's a scene from "City On the Edge of Forever" where Mister Spock has removed the vial to find that it is now empty--the entire volume of Cordrazine having just been accidentally injected into Doctor McCoy:



Different color fluids were used in different episodes to indicate different medications.  We've seen mostly red and orange fluids (probably since red makes them seem dangerous and exciting--but we've seen blues and greens, too).

Selecting the best color for any given shot is probably a joint effort between the property master, the director, the director of photography, and the lighting team--especially in an era where Star Trek Phase II shoots with High Definition cameras.  Series continuity plays a role too.  I mean, otherwise you end up having the annoying problem (well, annoying to me at least) of seeing Cordrazine be red colored in "City on the Edge of Forever"...



...but then having it be Sunkist/Orange Crush-colored when Nurse Chapel gives Cordrazine to Ensign Rizzo in "Obsession:"



Grrrrrr! ;) 

In addition to the early "sleeve"-style hypo, they had at least three telescoping-style hypos produced.  Here's a shot of three of the hypos together from "Return to Tomorrow." It's a little hard to see in this screen grab, but the hypo in Nurse Chapel's hand that contains Sargon's ineffective "metabolic reduction medication" has fluid in it that is indeed a slightly different color (more orange) from Henoch's and Thalassa's more efficacious red fluid.



At any rate, here are some shots of my reproduction Original Series-era telescoping-style hypo spray:






You can see that I have a number of accompanying medication vials of varying colors--whatever meets our cinematic and script needs.  It's easy to swap out a red vial, for example:



...and replace it with a yellow vial.



There are important medical matters going on in the Phase II episode "Blood and Fire."  So our hypo sprays figure prominently in that episode.

Obligatory slideshow is at:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/10901121@N06/sets/72157603748995814/show/

Greg Schnitzer
Gaithersburg, Maryland
« Last Edit: March 20, 2009, 11:06:24 pm by GSchnitzer »


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Offline Dave Galanter

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2008, 02:29:55 pm »
I bow in amazement once again.  I think this is why I can't be too excited about the Star Trek Tour. Once you've been on the real set, and seen these awesome props, seeing it on some tour in mock up just isn't as cool. :D

Offline Muddseye

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2008, 02:31:46 pm »
true Dave.  Greg if I aint said it before, you ROCK!!

Im going to the Tour when i comes around here in full NV regalia...
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Offline trekchick

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2008, 03:23:20 pm »

Man I hope they actually come out with these,I hate needles! :confused:
I wouldn't mind getting a shot with a hypo spray instead,It's beats me looking away in the other direction and trying not to cry..Blood tests don't bother me...Shots? Now that's a different story..some medical assistants that gave me shots made me feel like a dartboard....Ouch! :o

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Offline Tony F

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2008, 03:29:54 pm »
Mark..Call me ..Im there...I have enough NV stuff to show off now....though always lookin for more!!
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Offline RobertMfromLI

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2008, 06:38:07 pm »

Man I hope they actually come out with these,I hate needles! :confused:
I wouldn't mind getting a shot with a hypo spray instead,It's beats me looking away in the other direction and trying not to cry..Blood tests don't bother me...Shots? Now that's a different story..some medical assistants that gave me shots made me feel like a dartboard....Ouch! :o

cherie ;D

They already have them... they've been in trial use for certain medication delivery for quite some time... I'm not a doctor, and have no training in such, and my memory is kinda rusty, but I think they are used in trials for situations where intra-muscular injections would normally be used.

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Offline Bhodi Li

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2008, 07:48:00 pm »
Sure, Robert, beat me to it, whydon'tcha!

Anyhoo, yeah, they have something similar in use.  Seen 'em used, never actually experienced it meself.  I, too, am not a needle fan.  Something about something sharp and metal under my skin just, well, gets under my skin.
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Offline GSchnitzer

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2008, 08:14:55 pm »
Aaron Ismach invented the "jet injector" in 1964. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jet_injector

Bioject is now producing a CO2 cardridge powered injector--rather than the "old fashioned" models that run on electricity or via foot pump.

http://www.bioject.com/biojector2000.html

These injectors are only for subcutaenous injections, not for intramuscular or intravenous.

Greg Schnitzer, RN
Gaithersburg, Maryland


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Offline RobertMfromLI

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2008, 08:40:34 pm »
Thanks Greg! Out of curiosity, what is the difference between the three? (IV, IM, sub-cutaneous)?
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andriech

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2008, 08:50:39 pm »
I want to know what flavor the liquid in those vials are, Greg.


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Offline lizhume

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2008, 09:21:46 pm »
I've always loved McCoy's hyposprays.  These are sooo cool.

There are hyposprays now, but nothing like McCoys.  I've seen one in action back when I was a kid.  They're mainly used for subcutaneous injections, like insulin for diabetics.  They do not look nor work as effectively as McCoy's cool looking hyposprays.

Not to wander off topic, but someone did ask what the differences are between intramuscular and subcutaneous.
So subcutaneous has a shorter needle on the shot and the injection only goes into the upper layers of body.  These kinds of shots don't hurt too much and don't hurt for days afterwards.  Insulin is injected in this way.

Intramuscular is basically a injection type like a tetanus shot or flu shot.  We've seen these shots often in doctor offices.

I may get shots on a daily basis, but I'd love one of McCoys.  ;D
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Offline GSchnitzer

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Re: #20 Prop: Dr. McCoy's Hypo Spray
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2008, 09:43:07 pm »
Thanks Greg! Out of curiosity, what is the difference between the three? (IV, IM, sub-cutaneous)?
As was posted earlier, subcutaenous ("sub-q") injections are just below the skin.  They are done with very fine needles about 1/2 an inch long.  They are so fine and so shallow, you hardly feel them.  Insulin is a common thing to inject sub-q; you need to find a spot that has a lot of thick skin--thighs, abdomen, upper arms.  People (like diabetics) can often give their own sub-q injections.

Intramuscular ("IM") injections use a longer needle--maybe an inch and a half to two inches--and are a larger bore because they have to be sturdy enough to penetrate a bunch of tissue.  These go in deep enough to get into a muscle--generally into the gluteal, vastus lateralis, or the deltoid muscles.  Narcotics, some vaccines, and most antibiotics are given via this route.

Intravenous (IV) medications use a needle--it doesn't have to be very long--that poke through the skin (like any injection I suppose)--but goes directly into a vein instead of just into muscle tissue or skin tissue  You have to be very precise to hit the vein (and not go all the way through it and out the other side).  It's pretty much like drawing blood: put on a tourniquet, tap on the vein to raise it up a bit (often at the crook of your elbow) and in goes the needle--except you inject instead of draw blood out).  Drugs given IV work rapidly since they get quickly circulated.

That's the main difference between these three different routes--how quickly you want the drug to take effect.


Greg Schnitzer, RN
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