external image popsicle.jpg

To freeze or not freeze?
To freeze or not freeze?

"Believing cryonics could reanimate somebody who has been frozen is like believing you can turn hamburger back into a cow."

"Your Last Best Chance For Life--and Your Family's."

What is Cryonics?
Cryonics – the preservation of legally dead humans or pets at very low temperature (below −200ºF, −130ºC) in the hope that future science can restore them to life, youth and health.

Cryostasis – Stored in liquid nitrogen
Cryonicists - people who use or advocate cryonics to greatly extending life and youth.
Vitrification – Glass formation formed on patient in very low temperatures
Cryostat – Long term storage facility for patients.
(customized by Mercedes-Bens)

How does it work?
A patient interested in cryonics would contact a facility and pay in full. Then, when legally pronounced dead (the heart stops beating), a trained professional or informed family member would immediately begin to ice down the patient. The patient would be put in an ice bath and transported to the facility, where their body would be suspended, frozen, in liquid nitrogen.
Many others opt for neuropreservation. Neuropreservation is the protection of the head or brain of the patient, which cryonicists remove from the patient's body immediately after legal death. They then freeze them in liquid nitrogen or vitrify them to limit damage caused by ice crystals.

CI Building Exterior
CI Building Exterior

Facility Manager Beside Cryostat
Facility Manager Beside Cryostat

Big Cryostat
Big Cryostat

Scientist: Cryonics is the freezing of legally dead human beings specifically in very low temperatures, usually -300* Fahrenheit. Cryonics can only be performed on a human being once they are legally dead. The cryonicists basically want to preserve the memory, personality, and identity of the person, which is stored in the brain, the most crucial part of Cryonic preservation. Patients are placed in a cryostat to begin the freezing. Cryonics is not currently reversible because of the extreme temperatures. Because of this, revival would require repairing the damage from lack of oxygen, tissue vitrification, and would require years of physical therapy to regain basic bodily functions. Technology today is no where near reversing the effects of Cryonics, but we never know what the future may hold. Cryonics is morally correct because the frozen patients are already legally dead. Even if cryonics does not work, they are already dead. And if they can be revived, it was completely worthwhile. Biological organisms have already been revived, though very basic forms of life. These experiments show that cryonics is possible, though far in the future. Meanwhile, we will be taking great leaps and bounds in the field of science.

Bioethicist: Cryonics is not right in any way. Not only does cryonics give false hope to bereaved families (ex., calling legally dead customers "suspended patients" and calling dying "de-animating"), it also conflicts with many ideas about religion and the morality of raising the dead. For example, where does the soul go? Cryonicists say that just as the sould does not leave the body as you sleep, neither will the soul leave the body of a "suspended patient." Another concern is whether only God should have the power to bring people back to life. Cryonicists say that they do not bring people back to life, but that they were never dead in the first place. They say that the only thing that they are doing is preserving terminally ill patients in a cryo-coma until technology improves enough to cure their diseases, however long that may be. Yet another concern is that resuscitated patients will feel alienated and alone with their family and era dead. Many cryonics doctors answer that it is just like having an extended period of sleep, and if a patient is worried about being alone "when they wake up," the answer of a cryonics advocate is to freeze the entire family, costing millions of dollars. However, is it even right to selfishly preserve oneself with the extreme dearth of resources and population growth that is only increasing? Though scientists may say it is possible, there will never be a cure for old age, so preserving oneself at 90 years old is a waste of money. While under certain circumstances, preserving a young adult or child taken before their time is right, what kind of world will that person face? Their family will be gone, or at least much older than them. The world's way of speaking and dress will be changed. There is no guarantee that cancer or AIDS will ever be cured. there is also no guarantee that a cured patient wll be able to resume everyday life after a long period of being frozen, or whether the patient will need years of physical therapy, as do most coma victims. So to potentially dupe families and sick people into thinking that they will wake cured and happy is misleading, not to mention that the process is bioethically wrong.

Lawyer- In the United States today, there are no state or federal laws that prohibits cryonics or even mentions it by name. In order to be suspended patients must be proclaimed legally dead. In April 1990 the Cemetery and Funeral Services Act, Bill 42 became a law in British Columbia, successfully outlawing cryonics in the province. British Columbia, Vancouver is the only legal jurisdiction known to have a law against cryonics.

Discussion Questions:
Would you consider cryonics?
Do you believe cryonics is against religion?
Do you believe cryonics is a legitimate way to "live forever"?

After receiving a patient, the surgeons remove all blood from the patient, because the deep freeze would lyse the cells, and replace it with a type of anti-freeze.
After receiving a patient, the surgeons remove all blood from the patient, because the deep freeze would lyse the cells, and replace it with a type of anti-freeze.

Website URL:http://www.alcor.org/index.html<span style="mso-tab-count: 1">
Name of Reviewer: Maddie
Date of Review: 5/27/08
Review of Site:
The Institute responsible for this webpage is the Alcor Life Extension Foundation. The information is relatively current, last updated sometime in 2008. The website has some bias towards its own position on cryonics- it is trying to make new customers want to buy into their organization. It has good overview and in-depth information. The purpose of the website is not only to inform the reader but also to persuade the reader to become a client. I would recommend this website to others researching; however, I would strongly caution them to be wary of what is fact and what is opinion, and also to remember they are advertising their own services.

Website URL:http://www.cryonics.org/<span style="mso-tab-count: 1">

Name of Reviewer: Ben
Date of Review:5/27/08
Review of Site: The non profit organization, The Cryonics Institute, is responsible for the webpage. The webpage is fairly new, being last updated in 2002. Although the site says it is non profit, they do want you to consider their idea of cryonics and buy their products. They do explicitly express their opinions, saying that cryonics is the best chance of life for “you and your family.” There is a lot of information on the cryonic process. There are many links describing the process of how cryonics works, demonstrating the techniques used. The purpose of the website is to persuade people and try to sell their product.

Website URL:
http://www.suspendedinc.com/<span style="mso-tab-count: 1">

Name of Reviewer: Zachary
Date of Review: May,27,2008
Review of Site:
The institution responsible for http://www.suspendedinc.com/ is Suspended Animation. The site’s information is fairly recent, the most recent archive dates October 2007. The information on this site is very accurate although there is some institutional bias because they want you to consider cryonics. The site provides you with an in-depth analysis of all of the different procedures associated with cryonics. The purpose of http://www.suspendedinc.com/ is to inform and educate the public on the topic of cryonics. I would recommend this website to anyone interested in cryonics. It provides you with an abundant amount of information concerning cryonics.