Greetings from Colorado Springs

edited February 2015 in Everything else

I'm not sure it's entirely customary to make an intro post, but it seems that some do and in any community there are those who want to know who they are talking to, so here we are.

I live in Colorado Springs, hold a degree in Mortuary Science, and am lucky enough to be effectively retired while I'm still young enough to enjoy it.  This gives me a good amount of extra time to work on a variety of extracurricular interests.  Oh, and regarding the moniker... it comes from a little side bit in the original Fallout game and ended up sticking to me shortly after I started embalming (my name is really common, so nicknames are a necessity).

Up until recently I have been working on building open hardware for my lab (and a lot of my own little customizations), working on non-implantables (tDCS, and the like), and have been mostly interested in BioHacking microorganisms as a way to get up to speed on the requisite tech and protocols.  Recently I started in on building some scaffolds and working on some tissue engineering protocols with an eye toward "custom organs" - i.e. small, implantable, tissue engineered, patches of skin modified to produce some specific protein.  The tissues being grown are currently from biopsies of my own tissue.  It isn't working very well, but progress is being made... very, very slowly.

In addition to augmentation, I also have some interests in therapy for a few specific diseases.

As far as my experience as a grinder, it has been my custom to experiment using my own tissues where mammalian tissue is needed, and very little otherwise.  I have also performed a number of small procedures on myself.  I won't go into specifics, but I'm capable of biopsies, removal of small objects, and sutures on myself.  I am confident that implants are not going to be much issue.

I'm preparing for my first implant (basic magnetic finger), but am more interested in future implants I have in mind and hope I can find some resource here to help with.  As part of my prep for the magnetic finger, I've tested a few phenolic locals on myself and currently have a mix that numbs up a fingertip for about 72 hours - give or take 12.  I want to get this down to about 48 before I use it.

I saw that there is at least one other person here in Colorado Springs... Hopefully there are others.  It would be nice to build a local community to discuss face to face, and share resources... I lend you my PCR, you let me use your electrophoresis.  That sort of thing.  If you're here or close enough for comfort, hit me up and we'll see if we can't build a little pocket of people on the front range.


  • I'm in Utah, in a town which is about 10 hrs from you. But if I'm ever in COS I'll drop you a line! Welcome to the forum.

    I have a question. What do you guys (morticians) do with pacemakers? Specifically the ones with nuclear batteries? I've always wondered if there was a (mandatory) protocol for disposal or do you get to keep them?
  • I see what you're thinking, Director... One of those nuclear batteries could come in handy...
  • Typically pacemakers, drug pumps, VNS implants, etc. are only removed prior to cremation.  They are simply left in the body for burials.  The specific regulations as to disposal vary from state to state, but the funeral home I worked for donated all implants to a vet.  They typically sterilize them and use them in dogs.

    You might check around with local funeral homes.  I'd find out which ones are family owned and which are corporate (SCI, Newcomer, etc.).  You are much more likely to get cooperation from a family owned funeral home.

    If you do find one who is willing to work with you, I'd see if the embalmer can immerse the implant in either formalin, a 50 index embalming fluid, a phenolic (like Basic Dryene) or a glutaraldehyde sterilization solution so you aren't handling a potentially infectious implant.  About the only thing you would have even a minor concern about after this would be a prion disease (CJD) which are difficult to kill during embalming (due to not having high enough formaldehyde concentrations to get all the proteins), but submersion should cross-link and denature these proteins effectively.  Additional sterilization after you receive an implant would be prudent.

    Also, be careful of the leads on pacemakers containing auto-defibrillators.  I've been blasted a couple of times and it will wake your ass up more effectively than any drug.

    One caveat - implanting one of these devices may still carry a risk of infection.  People don't end up in a mortuary because they were healthy... something killed them.  Because of privacy laws, you won't be able to find out what killed the person you are getting the implant from.
  • Excellent info @DocMorbid! Thanks.
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