A Nottingham cryonics charity has said they support the decision for a 14-year-old girl with terminal cancer to freeze her body.
An historic legal ruling was made today (November 18) after a London girl wrote a letter to a High Court judge explaining that she wanted ‘to live longer’ and did not want ‘to be buried underground.’
The girl died in October and has been taken to the US to be preserved with the High Court judge ruling that the girl’s mother should be allowed to decide what happens with her body.
Her father did not support the decision.
Cryonics UK, based in Parkside, Wollaton, is a charity that helps people in the UK to freeze their bodies for preservation and supports the court ruling.
why would you choose not to avoid death when you can live for longer?
Volunteer charity member Victoria Stevens said: “I support cryopreservation and can’t imagine why anyone would want to die – why would you choose not to avoid death when you can live for longer?
“We stress to our patients the importance of living a healthy life – but the point is you can be rejuvenated to a better state of health if that’s what you choose.”
Cryopreservation is the procedure of deep-freezing bodies of those who have died of an incurable disease but it is not yet known if it’s possible to bring people back to life.
The overall cost of the procedure is thought to be around £27,870, which includes medications, doctors fees, travel costs and dry ice and water.
The charity has helped to cryopreserve several bodies which are now stored in America.
Ms Stevens said: “We advise people to plan ahead and make their arrangements beforehand.
“Sometimes people call us at the last minute – but this is not always possible.
“We like to keep an eye on our patients so we can be there and ready when they need us.”
The group aim to arrive as soon as a patient’s heartbeat stops and they are clinically pronounced dead.
The body is then cooled in an ice bath and transported to a mortuary so that blood can be replaced with liquid nitrogen.
This keeps it at a lower temperature and prevents ice crystals from forming – which can cause damage to cells.
Ms Stevens said: “We arrange for the body to be transported to America and stored there as there are currently no facilities for this in the UK.
“The body is packed in dry ice at around -70 degrees Celsius which keeps it cool for several days.”