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"…we store information differently, reading a science fiction story, to make it make sense."
- Samuel R. Delany

Eternity Drug  
  A medication that puts a person into a deep hibernation-like sleep for decades at a time.  

This is another variation on the idea of cold rest, or cold sleep.

Unfortunately, however, the Eternity drug had unpleasant side-effects for about ten percent of the people who used it.

Poor, brave Pelham. Inventor of the Eternity drug, that had made the great plunge into interstellar space possible, he lay dead now from his own invention.
Technovelgy from Far Centaurus, by A.E. van Vogt.
Published by Astounding Science-Fiction in 1944
Additional resources -

If patients survive the initial dose, many more doses for much longer sleep can be tolerated.

Compare to the space capsule from E.R. James' 1954 story of the same name and to the escape pod from George Lucas' 1976 story Star Wars.

Compare to the frigorific process from The Senator's Daughter (1879) by Edward Page Mitchell, cold-sleep from Robert Heinlein's Methuselah's Children (1941), stasis from Heinlein's Door Into Summer (1951), the adiabatic pods from The Lady Who Sailed The Soul (1960) by Cordwainer Smith, corpsicle from Pohl's The Age of the Pussyfoot (1965), the hibernaculum from 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) by Arthur C. Clarke, cryosleep from Flight of Exiles (1972) by Ben Bova and the EverRest Cryotorium from Roger Zelazny's Flare (1992).

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Far Centaurus
  More Ideas and Technology by A.E. van Vogt
  Tech news articles related to Far Centaurus
  Tech news articles related to works by A.E. van Vogt

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