November 6, 2015 — One week after a Las Vegas spa worker died in a cryotherapy machine, state officials have opened an investigation into workplace safety and health concerns about the technology itself.
Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that the victim, 24 year-old Chelsea Ake-Salvacion, was found death on October 20 inside a whole-body cryotherapy machine.
A lawyer for her family told the New York Times it was possible that she dropped her cell phone in the chamber, bent down to pick it up, and passed out due to a lack of oxygen.
Other people have reported severe frostbite injuries. Next year, a lawsuit filed in Texas by a woman whose arm was severely frozen in a cryotherapy machine will to go trial. In 2011, an Olympic sprinter named Justin Gatlin wore sweaty socks during cryotherapy and developed frostbite.
Cryotherapy is billed as a way to reduce pain and inflammation, promote healthy circulation, and rejuvenate the body and mind. Each three-minute session costs up to $90. Users stand mostly naked in a phone booth-sized chamber that is filled up to their neck with liquid nitrogen gas cooled to minus 300ºF.