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"Beyond a thousand years from now humans are not quite recognizably human, and I have trouble finding characters."
- Larry Niven

Crechepod  
  A small, enclosed medical device providing full life support as well as advanced regrowth technologies.  

A continuing theme in science fiction works is the idea that medical knowledge will be increasingly implemented in mechanical systems, rather than in people.

A label on the crechepod identified the disrupted flesh inside as having belonged to an identity called Lewis Orne... The flesh in the pod bore little resemblance to the photo, but even in the flaccid repose of demideath, Orne's unguent-smeared body radiated a bizarre aura....

"Why'd you bother with the pod?" a medic asked. "This patient's vital tone is too low to permit operative replacement of damaged organs due to the energy drain of regrowth."

From The Godmakers, by Frank Herbert.
Published by Berkley Medallion in 1972
Additional resources -

There are two main reasons to have medical expertise available in a small package. One is to provide medical expertise without needing to add another character. The other is to bring characters back from otherwise final plot devices.

For more details on how energy redirection can lead to regrowth, see Atlotl/Gibiril Regimen; also, compare this device to autodoc.

Compare to the emergency treatment chamber from Agent of Vega by James Schmitz.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Godmakers
  More Ideas and Technology by Frank Herbert
  Tech news articles related to The Godmakers
  Tech news articles related to works by Frank Herbert

Crechepod-related news articles:
  - Trauma Pod Battlefield Medical Treatment System

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