Medical Technology of Charted Space
The Medical Technology of Charted Space is nothing short of amazing. The most advanced TL-15 medical technologies of Charted Space literally appear as death-cheating miracles to the non-spacefaring civilizations. Life can be extended, limbs regenerated, minds transferred, and even new life created.
The medical sciences are life sciences used to preserve and heal life. They are often combined with other technologies through interdisciplinary study. Advanced Bionetics, Gravitic Studies, Advanced Biochemistry, and others have produced a dizzying array of medicinal pharmaceuticals, anagathics, cyberware, and other advanced medical technology.
Medical technologies have a near unique capacity to transform life, society, and civilization. For instance, early medical breakthroughs very often reduce child mortality making larger and larger urban population densities possible. And an increase in urban densities is usually correlated to an increased pace of technological advancement.
Some of the medical technologies currently transforming Charted Space include:
Anagathics are one of the key technologies available within Charted Space. An anagathic is a life-prolonging drug. There are many varieties available, but they all share but a single characteristic: they are prohibitively expensive and unaffordable to the greater masses. Anagathics trade is nevertheless big business and the rich of nearly every major race partakes of these medical miracles. Cultural taboos against taking anagathics exist in some parts of Charted Space.
Bionics & Prosthetics
The use of bionics and prosthetics is widespread from the use of grav caps for amputated legs to the simplest low tech peg leg. Normally sufficient limb regeneration technology exists to replace practically any sophont's limbs, but the technology has its limits.
Transmorphism & Cyberware
Despite technological sophistication enabling a transhuman and/or transmorphic existence independent of bodies, genders, and biological physicality, mainstream interstellar society has not yet adopted these ideas.
- Transmorphism is the idea that sophonts should not be limited to the bodies or forms that they originated with... Many societies have taboos against straying too far from original forms, but others easily embrace mind transference into other bodies, bodily modification, machine augmentation, and other forms of bodily modification. Humans, with their pervasive self-obsession sometimes call this transhumanism. Other scholars call it transsophontism. The term, transmorphism, has come into regular use within the greater academic community of Charted Space.
- Cyberware is a technology advocating for the transformation of minds and bodies through technological modification, whether organically biological or mechanically technological.
- Headware, or Mindware, often allow for mind-computer interfaces allowing for extensions of intelligence beyond original organic capabilities.
- Bodywear are prosthetics meant to enhance or supercede existing physicalities such as limbs, internal organs, sensory organs, or other parts of an organism. These items are sometimes referred to colloquially as "chrome" despite a lack of actual chrome in many of them.
On the fringes of interstellar society and Charted Space, these ideas are being experimented with. And sometimes, they are being experimented with within Charted Space although they have not yet been widely embraced. Some ideas like Wafer-tech, a type of mindwear, have been embraced, but others do not have widespread acceptance.
Transmorphism and Cybernetics are technologies that are part and parcel of cyborgs, sophonts with a mix of lifeform mediums, organic (meat) and inorganic (machine). Several interstellar societies have already stated inclinations to mix exotic lifeform mediums into their baseline bodies when the technologies become available.
Epochal Med-Tech Periods
Imperial society classifies medical technology using a set of chronological epochs and periods.
- Metempsychosis (Mind Transference)
Med-Robotica (Medical Robotics)
Medical robots or Med-Robotica are incredibly sophisticated machines that can consistently outperform all but the most sophisticated of sophont physicians.
- Pseudobiological Robots
- Medical Service Bots
- Medical Nanocytes
Medical Nanotech (Medical Microtechnology)
Nanotechnology is a widespread part of interstellar society within Charted Space. However the deep effects of nanotechnology still remain unseen. Greater social change has been predicted by many Imperial futurists.
- Grey Goo, or swarms of rampaging nanotechnological machines, are one such technological evolution that has yet to come to pass.
Cryotechnology & Cold Sleep
Cryotechnology is in widespread use throughout Charted Space. The "cold sleep" is often the most economical way to travel the stars. However, it is not without its risks. Nearly 10% of poorly maintained cryotechnology cocoon sleepers never leave their coffins. Cryotechnic states of suspended animation are synonymous with the term low passage.
Diseases & Plagues
Organlegging & Medical Crimes
Organlegging is probably the most well-known medical crime occurring within Charted Space. Organleggers kidnap selected sophonts and then harvest their organs for sale. Cloned or regrown organs often lack the vigor or quality of organs having naturally grown within a sophont's body.