Cybernetics Rejection Syndrome

Cybernetics Rejection Syndrome (CRS) is a general term for a set of symptoms that occur in some people equipped with cybernetic implants and prosthetics. Most commonly the syndrome is caused by the organism not being able to adapt to the artificial augmentation. Depending on the severity and type of the symptoms it can be a minor short-term condition or a more serious chronic one.

It started with an itch where my prosthetic arm touched my skin. I thought it was nothing, but a few days later my arm started to hurt so much that I couldn't do anything
— A patient with the CRS

Causes

CRS happens when the body can't adapt to the cybernetic augmentation and tries to get rid of it. Most commonly it has to do with problems of the nervous system to correctly transmit and receive information to and from the artificial body part.

Bacterial infections happening in places where prosthetics touch the body are often also considered part of the CRS. Those infections are mostly caused by neglecting to properly wash these places. The fact that those infections often remove the ability to use the augmentation or can lead to its removal completely.

Symptoms

  • Reduced, or lack of, mobility of the cybernetic body part
  • Itching in the place where the cybernetic touches the skin
  • Pain in the place where the cybernetic touches the skin
  • Treatment

    The bacterial infection is the easiest to treat part of this condition. Antibiotics and salves are used. Usually, patients recover after a week or two of treatment. Situation gets more complicated when it comes to the neurological symptoms. There are medications that help the body create correct pathways between the nervous system and the artificial body part. However, the dosage must strictly controlled and the patient must be under near constant medical observation. The treatment time is also much longer than in case of the bacterial infection. Patients with neurlogical symptoms may also be given pain suppresessants.

    Sequela

    Bacterial infection

    If left untreated the bacterial infection can spread to the whole body and cause many serious and dangerous diseases. Eventually, it can even lead to death. It is estimated that yearly in the whole United Republic of Earth and its Colonies about 3000 people die of CRS bacterial infection complications. Those are mostly people who received cybernetic augmentation either as a result of a serious accident or as a part of a new job, but couldn't afford treatment.

    Neurological symptoms

    In theory, the most serious complication of the neurological symptoms of CRS is losing control of the cybernetic body part. However, it can also lead to serious mental health issues. The pain that appears as the result of those symptoms is very hard to make go away with over-the-counter medications alone and can lead to the patient isolating themselves from others. Such people, suffering alone, will try to find anyway of dealing the pain. In places with limited medical care there are reports of people committing suicide, because they couldn't stand the pain anymore.

    Prevention

    There isn't really a way to be 100% immune to the neurological symptoms of the CRS. The most patients and doctors can do is monitor the condition, especially for the first few months after receiving the augmentation. At the first signs of problems, doctor can prescribe a medication which can help with creating proper connections between the patients nervous system and the cybernetic body part. The earlier these problems are treated, the lower is the chance of them becoming much more serious.

    Patient may also receive the neurological medication right after getting the augmentation. However, such medications are very expensive and most insurances cover them only if there are symptoms. For preventive treatment, patients need to pay from their own pocket and not everyone can afford it.

    Preventation of bacterial infections is much easier. Most cybernectics are quite easy to remove by the patient, so they can keep both the cybernetic and the skin clean. It is recommended to clean them thoroughly every day.

    Cultural Reception

    Many people see the Cybernetic Rejection Syndrome as an "unlucky" condition. Cybernetic augmentation are a common thing in the modern society. They offer many disabled people a chance at a normal life which they would not normally have. People affected with the CRS are advocating for the change of perception of the condition. They say that calling it "unlucky" hurts those affected by it. CRS is a condition that can happen to anybody and no one should be made to feel bad because they have it.

    Origin
    Natural
    Rarity
    Uncommon
    Affected Species


    Cover image: Galaxy by Jeremy Thomas

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