$28,000 to deep freeze your body after death, cryonics expert explains

Via Cryonics, bodies can be preserved for decades.
Sejal Sharma
Cryonics is the practice of preserving humans and animals at cryogenic temperatures.
Cryonics is the practice of preserving humans and animals at cryogenic temperatures.


A man in Milwaukee says he will pay $28,000 to cryogenically deep freeze his body after he dies. The man in question, Dennis Kowalski, is head of the Cryonics Institute in the U.S. state of Wisconsin, which preserves people's bodies after they die. The institute currently has over 200 patients in cryostasis.

"My gut instinct says that 100 years from now, we may have the technology to revive someone. But nobody knows the future, and it's impossible to know for sure. You've got nothing to lose by preserving your body after death but potentially everything to gain," says Kowalski.

Would you rather be frozen instead of buried or cremated?

Considered to be pseudoscience by many, cryonics is a practice through which human and animal bodies, immediately after their death, can be preserved at cryogenic temperatures for decades in the hopes that scientists in the future will have developed a way to resuscitate them. The conditions created by extremely low temperatures can preserve tissue for centuries, some studies say.

$28,000 to deep freeze your body after death, cryonics expert explains
Chambers where bodies are preserved.

In fact, there are cryonic clinics spread out around the world, where people are spending hundreds and thousands of dollars to preserve their bodies after death. Presently, cryonics can only be performed after the pronouncement of death.

"The way I see it, 100 years ago, when someone's heart stopped, that was it. The technology wasn't advanced enough to bring them back," says Kowalski. "But over the years, we learned that you could manually make someone's heart work through CPR or cardiac defibrillation. Something that was once impossible has become routine today."

Although a far cry from attaining immortality, science justifies the practice of cryonics on the fact that low temperatures can stop chemical changes for centuries and that "legally dead does not mean irreversibly dead." Although cryonics has gained much popularity over the years, it is not a recognized procedure by the medical fraternity.

The number of people signing up to get their bodies frozen is increasing year by year

Kowalski's wife and three children have also signed up for the procedure. "I've had the conversation with them about it, and they get it. They agree that the chance of waking up, even if slim, is worth it. They're pretty optimistic about the future as well," added Kowalski.

As per a paper in Rejuvenation Research, following the death of the cryonics subject, the team will begin preservation procedures immediately. The first stage involves cooling the body temperature between 50°F and 32°F (10°C and 0°C) and mechanically restoring circulation and respiration. The second stage involves the subject's blood is washed out and a lot of the body water being replaced with a cryoprotectant - sort of a human antifreeze.

The subject is then cooled down to a temperature nearing -184°F (−120°C) and held in cryostasis till the time comes to resuscitate them. If and when that happens, the subject will be rewarmed, the cryoprotectant will be removed from their body, their tissues will be repaired, diseases will be cured, and the subject will be rejuvenated.

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