Is cryotherapy worth the risks?
Debate Rounds (4)
Make your speech as difficult as you want; I would prefer you to make it an informational one. You can use the terms "cryotherapy" or "cryosurgery."
Don't make any new points in the very last speech; that just complicates things. Inability to follow this rule will result in the debate going to me, whether it was intentional or not. I will follow this exact same rule, in case you are wondering.
Since I am Con, I would assume that Pro should begin the arguments and, thus, this round.
After all, until Pro frames the debate, I can say very little.
So, with further ado, please begin the round.
- Mr. Speaker
For those of you that don't know, cryotherapy is the process of using cold to heal or treat soreness or pain in the muscle. If you use cryotherapy that is "professional" and actually is for medical use and in a contained facility, it has a few differences than using a bag of peas for cryotherapy. The "professional" (I will use the term 'professional for lack of better term; if you have a better one, then feel free to give it in your next speech) cryotherapy is inside a chamber in which it is incredibly cold. Most of the time, the patient is standing inside a -150 degree chamber for a couple of seconds, and this process reduces all or most pains from the muscle. The home-made treatment of cryotherapy can be anything that is somewhat cold, whether it be a bag of peas or something else that is somewhat cold. In order to clarify, both types of cryotherapy will be used in my arguments. You don't have to use both types if you don't want to.
First of all, there are lots of NFL players who don't have enough time to recover from muscle soreness before their next big game, and they want to be in the best shape possible. Naturally, I would assume being someone who is muscle-bound and has a '16-pack' to be in "best shape," but these football players have a different opinion. Not only do they have to have inhumanly large biceps, but they also need to make sure that they don't have aching muscles while they smash their faces into other player's gargantuan abs. That's where cryotherapy comes in. There's a lot of NFL players who only need to pay 35 bucks to get their aching muscles back to health.
Say that Bob Buff, the somewhat professional football player, has a lot of muscle soreness in his legs. He doesn't know why; it just does. Given a week or so, it might recover, but he doesn't really know. But he doesn't have "a week or so." Instead, his next game is only a few days away, and he doesn't want to have his pained muscles being a pain in the freaking butt. So he goes to a cryotherapy center, or a chamber. He pays about $30 to the clerk, who looks like a lady but happens to be a man (dude looks like a lady-- Aerosmith). I don't want to describe what happened there. After one sketchy compliment and a surprisingly manly voice, the clerk grudgingly allows Bob Buff to get to the cryotherapy chamber. Bob is immersed in temperatures below zero. Almost within the hour, his muscle pain dissipates.
But you might be thinking: "Wait, cryotherapy takes place in a chamber under zero degrees? That seems even sketchier than Bob's compliments to the man clerk!" First of all, I can't disagree with the fact that it is somewhat difficult to imagine. After all, the human body can only withstand so much before it freezes to death. However, I'd like to point out some reasons why cryotherapy is still able to help the human, and not kill them. First of all, the person is only put into the cryotherapy session for only a few seconds; three minutes at most. That way, they avoid all accidental freezing or deaths.
Cryotherapy is incredibly useful in the fact that it is cheap and takes away most muscle soreness and pain. My muscle soreness example for Bob Buff was only one of the many uses of cryotherapy. Cryotherapy can also take away swelling in the muscle or skin. It can soothe "knots" in the muscle that occur when overexercising. Trying to solve these simple things can often take a long time to get rid of, but cryotherapy can easily soothe or heal these ailments that you have.
I will add more arguments in the next speech. To conclude, I believe that cryotherapy IS worth the risks, despite the fear that some people have when they learn about it. Forget about the "-150 degree"temperatures. While they might sound frightening to any self-loving person, they really aren't as harmful as they seem. Cryotherapy doesn't even have to be in a "professional" place; you can do it at home with an ice pack or something. Curbing pain doesn't have to be as time-consuming as it used to be; cryotherapy is the answer to this problem.
Thank you for your time and consideration, judges and debater.
Argument 1 - Death by cryotherapy.
In Las Vegas, a woman was found dead in a cryotherapy chamber due to lack of oxygen. 
During a cryotherapy prostate surgery, a patient died of complications due to the cryo-therapeutic chemicals. 
Clearly, cryotherapy is not entirely safe and has been even fatal for some. Such a perilous practice obviously requires additional testing, development, and oversight. The fact is that cryotherapy, as shown in these two examples, needs further refinement. Until then, cryotherapy should seldom be used.
Argument 2- Safer alternatives
Ever seen the TV commercial of the buff black guy who promotes IceyHot patches? Or what about those Asprin or other pain reliever ads? Either way, the truth of the matter is that there exist safer methods of dealing with pain than cryotherapy. After all, isn't cryotherapy tantamount to soaking in an ice bath? Why not do the latter instead?
Argument 3 - Harmful dependency.
Cryotherapy, as a powerful pain reliever which can even release endorphins and change moods, can create dependency. Just as with other substances that create ecstatic, pleasurable feelings (food, exercise, sex, etc.), cryotherapy can simply and temporarily suppress the symptoms and not treat the underlying problems. Got a tweaked lower back? Instead of receiving proper chiropractic adjustments or surgery, a human may favor momentary relief from cryotherapy. How about foot/leg pain? What if it's gout, a torn meniscus, or even a belly that's far too large? Cryotherapy! The problem, as you can see, is that this treatment can easily replace a cure. Such an dependency on good feelings does not benefit hurting human beings.
For all of these reasons, I urge that cryotherapy's implementation be delayed and, if approved after further testing, be conditioned on a doctor's order. Otherwise, cryotherapy will continue to be unsafe and addictive even in the presence of safer alternative.
- Mr. Speaker
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that you're talking about the case in Las Vegas dealing with "Chelsea Ake-Salvacion." First of all, I'd like to address the fact that Chelsea was unsupervised, and that's why experts are beginning to believe that they should put in supervision for cryotherapy to ensure that no one dies from this process. As for the guy who died from prostate surgery failure, I was unable to find anything for it on the web. Also, you mentioned the fact that "a perilous practice obviously requires additional testing," although cryotherapy has been used for over twenty years. According to Rejuvenice, Chelsea's company, they said, "We firmly believe in whole-body cryotherapy treatments for pain management, athletic recovery, detoxification and a variety of other ailments. Millions of treatments have been given safely all over the world for more than 20 years."
"Ever seen the TV commercial of the buff black guy who promotes IceyHot patches? Or what about those Asprin or other pain reliever ads? Either way, the truth of the matter is that there exist safer methods of dealing with pain than cryotherapy. After all, isn't cryotherapy tantamount to soaking in an ice bath? Why not do the latter instead?"
That's a very good question. I can tell that you did a lot of critical thinking on this subject, and it's very n-ice (see what I did there) to finally debate someone who knows their stuff and takes it so seriously. Anyway, people use don't use these other solutions simply because:
a. IceyHot patches and Aspirin only temporarily suppress the symptoms for a little while, but cryotherapy can completely take away the pain. (I know that you made an argument for this in argument 3, but I'll address it just a little later)
b. An ice bath is less comfortable than cryotherapy. And, I know, that sounds stupid, but take it from someone who has experienced both and likes cryotherapy more. "It is like an accelerated air conditioner blowing on your body," said Sal Buscema. "It's not unbearable but I could tell you that for anybody that has been an athlete and has been in an ice bath, it is (comfortable) compared to submerging your body in a water bath," added Buscema, who experienced the ice bath treatment when he played college football and is now a regular practitioner of cryotherapy. They don't even have to dry off when they're done, nor do they feel cold. Buscema also note that people who walk out of cryotherapy room appear to be happier and report that they feel completely normal, if not better.
You stated that cryotherapy is only a "reliever," and not something that can completely reduce the muscle soreness. However, that's not true. Studies have shown that cryotherapy reduces the amount of creatine kinase, which causes muscle soreness and inflammation. Therefore, since these chemicals and molecules are reduced, then muscle pain is also reduced. You also happen to be right in saying that cryotherapy makes you happier. Thanks for helping me and making my job a little bit easier. It's not a bad thing to be addicted to cryotherapy, seeing as how I proved that it is very safe if there is supervision. It's not a drug; it just makes you happy and reduces muscle soreness.
Thank you for your time and consideration, judges and debater.
I appreciate the thorough rebuttal; here are my responses:
1. "...Chelsea was unsupervised, and that's why experts are beginning to believe that they should put in supervision for cryotherapy to ensure that no one dies from this process."
This actually proves my case. You say that supervision is needed to ensure the safety of cryotherapy. Fair enough. But your argument concedes an important point of mine: cryotherapy is inherently dangerous. Why else does it need to be supervised? Furthermore, think of the implications for privacy violation! Since most undress partially or completely for treatment, some pervert could easily snap pictures of unsuspecting victims. Your "solution" is a Pandora's Box! After all, If cryotherapy is not automated, then it's not ready for public consumption yet due to the risks. And since my position is that a moratorium ought to place on cryotherapy, I deserve to win this point.
Rejuvenice is a cryotherapy company and is, accordingly, quite biased on the issue. It's like expecting a coal-burning factory to tell the truth on climate change! Thus, Rejuvenice is hardly credible evidence to support your case.
2A. "IceyHot patches and Aspirin only temporarily suppresses the symptoms for a little while, but cryotherapy can completely take away the pain."
Do you have a source? This is at best an unproved assertion which should be taken by readers with a grain of salt.
So, let me deductively prove you wrong. We both acknowledge that inflammation is the cause of most bodily pains and aches. What reduces inflammation? A variety of methods. Now, what eliminates inflammation? Bodily healing. You see, cryotherapy - like Iceyhot and Aspirin - is only a treatment, not a remedy. Think of this: doesn't cold thaw? If so, then it follows that cryotherapy's affects would only be temporary too, not permanent as Pro contends. Yet, Iceyhot and Aspirin are more convenient and offer more immediate relief than cryotherapy. After all, the former two are in the comfort of your own home while the latter necessitates travel, appointment, additional cost, etc.
Everything considered, IceyHot and Aspirin are much better, safer treatments than cryotherapy.
2B. "An ice bath is less comfortable than cryotherapy. And, I know, that sounds stupid..."
Yes, I agree with you. Your argument is most stupid indeed. I don't care about your anecdote because it's not admissible evidence. There is no way to verify your claim of expertise. Even the Sal Buscema quote is just opinion.
What do you mean "less comfortable"? Do you mean that cold blocks of ice that passively float above your body in the bathtube? Ha! Or maybe do you mean the terrible inconvenience of laying down (bathtube) instead of standing up (cryotherapy)? How can Pro even begin to substantiate his argument? Well, he can't.
Now, here's the real killer: Ice bathtubs are CHEAPER than cryotherapy! Think about it. No travel, no appointments, no in-store treatment, etc. The treatment of cryotherapy is essentially available for every home-owner with a stink'in bathtube!
Hey, there's an argument! The FINANCIAL risks of cryotherapy are higher than the aforementioned, safer alternatives.
This is where addiction comes into play. The undue generation of good feelings may very well breed fiscal irresponsibility. Think of nicotine to the smoker, alcohol to the drunkard, orgasm to the sex addict, and other ecstatic reactions. Even someone as innocent as massage is financially devastating when used to try to treat the symptoms of an ulterior problem. No matter how many back rubs, the underlying issues persist and are never, unfortunately, addressed. This is precisely my fear of cryotherapy; that it's feel-good sensation may causes patients to become financially irresponsible and also distracted from the real, more serious problems.
3. Cryotherapy completely eliminates pain.
No, it doesn't. You used the oxymoron "completely reduce", which I think is more quaint than laughable. Yes, studies do show that cryotherapy reduces pain. But so do the alternatives! This is a moot point.
And for the record, addiction to cryotherapy - as previously addressed - does not aid your case. Rather, it is one of the several risks easily associated with cryotherapy.
Thanks! Look forward to Round 4!
- Mr. Speaker
When I mentioned "supervision," I was simply setting one of the burdens of the debate, nothing more. Forgive me if I introduced it a little late into this debate; I meant to do it earlier but forgot. Anyway, supervision is important in the use of cryotherapy. I acknowledge the fact that supervision is required to make cryotherapy safer. It's risky without supervision, but using supervision neutralizes the risk of anyone dying or getting hurt. Therefore, if supervision is used in cryotherapy, then death or injury is no longer a risk.
You also mentioned that "some pervert could easily snap pictures of unsuspecting victims." Don't you realize that not just anyone is allowed to supervise? Most likely, it's someone who is paid to supervise, and has probably signed a contract to keep the privacy of the patient. You think that the supervisor is just some random guy who was pulled aside to supervise. In truth, it's not.
You think that supervision always has to be from a person watching. It doesn't always have to be, however. Using today's technology, powerful thermal imagery can detect the slightest changes in a person's temperature. If the person gets too cold, then the thermal imagery can shut down the cryotherapy session before it's too late. Some types of thermal tech don't even need pictures, so that means that the patient won't have to worry about their privacy. And, despite what you might think, thermal imaging works reliably in cold temperatures. According to the Journal of Thermal Biology, "thermal imaging appears to be an accurate and reliable method of collecting skin temperature data following cryotherapy."
Therefore, the "point" that you mentioned does not go to either of us; that's for the judges to decide, unless you make a good argument.
Also, you can't argue with the fact that cryotherapy has treated MILLIONS of cases over twenty years, despite where the source comes from. And, out of a million cases, only a few have been harmed or injured by cryotherapy. So, lets assume that you have about 25 cases of cryotherapy injuries or deaths. Even 25 is stretching the number; more likely 15. Anyway, that's only a 0.000025% chance that you'll be the person who will get hurt using cryotherapy, using simple math. A chance that small? Most people would take those odds.
You stated that my statement about cryotherapy's pain reducing powers were "at best an unproved assertion," and I apologize for not stating my sources earlier. "Studies have found lower levels of inflammatory molecules, indicators of muscle soreness, in people after cryotherapy, and lower levels of creatine kinase, which is linked to muscle injury." (Carina Storrs, CNN) I don't know for sure how cryotherapy reduces these molecules, but it's been proven by scientists. I believe that I've said this already. Icy Hot, on the other hand, stimulates nerves, which is, as you stated, temporary. Therefore, cryotherapy is a better solution than that of aspirin or cold patches. Even if cryotherapy isn't permanent, it does take a little while for inflammatory molecules to grow back.
You state that my argument cannot be substantiated, but you are being a huge hypocrite by saying this. Your previous statements are "just opinion," as you have so finely put it. Sal Buscema's quote is reliable because he's done cryotherapy lots of times, and has compared it to the ice water trick that you have mentioned. While he might not know the science behind it, he's experienced it, and that's worth a lot of evidence. The reason that cryotherapy works much better than this cold water bath trick is because it's a lot colder. The cold bath is only about 10 degrees. Cryotherapy chambers are about -220 degrees. See the difference? The difference between the temperatures is what releases the inflammatory molecules in their muscles.
Also, being happy doesn't mean addiction. For example, exercise has been proven to make you happy, (http://www.mindbodygreen.com...) but it doesn't necessarily make one addicted to it. Most people don't exercise as much as they're supposed to, despite the fact that they feel better when they do it. But even if cryotherapy makes you addicted, it's not necessarily bad. After all, the chances of getting hurt by cryotherapy are only 0.000025%. Assuming that a person becomes "addicted" to cryotherapy, uses cryotherapy 100 times, then their chances of getting hurt ONCE during those sessions are still 0.0025%. Once again, people would take those odds. You also mentioned that patients will be "financially irresponsible," but that's not completely true. Since most of the people who use cryotherapy are athletes, then they often make about $2 million a year. Cryotherapy sessions cost $30. With 100 uses of cryotherapy, the cost is only about $3000. But let's assume that the person who uses cryotherapy is just your average guy. The average yearly salary was about $50,000, so that means that it's still relatively safe to be addicted to cryotherapy. However, it's unlikely that someone would use cryotherapy 100 times in a year, or even five years.
Cryotherapy, as I've mentioned, reduces pain by lowering the amount of inflammatory molecules in one's muscles. You even said it yourself: "Cryotherapy reduces pain," in your paragraph. The alternatives do reduce pain, yes, but they are not as effective because:
a. they are temporary, as you mentioned before
b. They don't take away inflammatory molecules, only stimulate nerves
Cryotherapy is a reliable and safe process that one can use to reduce their muscle pain. Unlike most pain-relieving treatments, cryotherapy is long-lasting and takes away inflammatory molecules. Compared to other alternatives, it's more effective and more comfortable. One can't guarantee that it's 100% safe. Cryotherapy, however, is just as harmless, if not more, as riding a bicycle. Cryotherapy is 99.99975% safe, as opposed to being 100%! That's a big difference, right there, guys (sarcasm)! It's been used and tested for over 20 years, and has been used over a million times, literally. Cryotherapy is the future of pain relief.
Thanks, voters. Vote PRO. I've shown how cryotherapy IS reliable, and how it is effective. Have a nice day, friends.
Please note that my statistics and stuff in this speech aren't arguments, just rebuttals. Feel free to make your own rebuttals if you choose.
Thank you for your time and consideration, judges and debaters.
But, instead, PRO has consistently maintained that cryotherapy is essentially risk-free and has - I admit - proven this effectively. Since my arguments as CON has to revolve around risk, PRO's deviousness robbed me of any ability to effectively argue.
Consider PRO"s recent statement in the comment section:
"Note how I've got exactly 8,000 characters in my final speech
It's perfect, just like cryotherapy. 99.999975% perfect."
This statement is definitive proof of the fact that PRO knew, possibly even before he started the debate, that cryotherapy itself wasn"t really risky. So why did PRO write the resolution to say that "cryotherapy is worth the RISKS"? Read on.
PRO still deserves to lose this round even if I concede that his arguments are superior to mine. That reason is PRO's attempt to deceive me. You see, PRO worded the resolution so that any reasonable person could infer that cryotherapy is muddled with controversy. However, my ignorance does not excuse PRO's poor language because the resolution is neither debatable nor fair. After all, cryotherapy is a settle issue that is decidedly in PRO's favor. No matter how hard I tried as CON, there was no chance of victory for me. Hence, this debate's resolution deceived me because it was a loaded topic. In simpler words, this was never a debate.
In short, PRO created a false debate to score an easy win at my expense. This is downright cruel at worst, poor sportsmanship at best, and all around unfair. I concede that my arguments suck, but those are the cards I was nefariously dealt. I have been cheated. You, the voters, have been cheated of a good debate full of controversy and an unsettled topic. I feel into PRO's trap, but that does not mean you have to award PRO the victory. Because both I and you have been played (trolled, even), give me recompense and grant me the triumph. This was never a real debate. We are the victims. PRO is the violator.
So please punish PRO and reward CON for my brave effort to try to win an impossible debate.
- Mr. Speaker
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