Dr Merri's Blog

Resolution of Crohn's Disease Following Chiropractic Care

Posted: September 17, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt
 

Complete Remission of Crohn's Disease with Chiropractic Care

The Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a case study on March 10, 2018, documenting the case of a man with Crohn's disease achieving complete resolutions of symptoms from chiropractic care. Crohn's disease is a chronic inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract that belongs to a group of conditions known as inflammatory bowel diseases, commonly referred to as IBD.

The study begins by noting that IBD is a common disorder affecting 1.6 million Americans, out of which 700,000 are classified as Crohn's disease. This disease strikes both men and women equally, is not more prevalent in any ethnic group, and typically affects those individuals who are either in their early teens or over 50 years of age. It is estimated that there are 30,000 new cases of Crohn's diagnosed each year with a total of 140,000 of the cases being under the age of 18 years.

According to the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation website, some of the more common symptoms of IBD include persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, urgent need to move bowels, abdominal cramps and pain, a sensation of incomplete evacuation, and constipation.

The patient in this case study was a 6-foot, 1-inch, 202 pound, 60-year-old male. His chief complaint was symptoms of IBD. He was medically diagnosed with Crohn's disease three years earlier. The man's symptoms included abdominal pain and cramping, stiffness all over his body, diarrhea and a generalized feeling of sickness. For several years, he was given a variety of medications which gave him no improvement in his original symptoms, but added a variety of worsening additional side effects. He eventually decided to self-discontinue his medications and seek chiropractic care.

A chiropractic examination was performed which included visual inspection, postural analysis, static and motion palpation, physical exam, and spinal x-rays. Based upon the findings of the examination, it was determined that multiple areas of subluxation were present in the man's spine, and care was initiated to address these findings.

After two chiropractic visits, the study reports that "...the patient reported a complete reduction in his symptoms, with an overall decrease in severity of symptoms from rare to no longer present. He did not experience any additional flare-ups or symptoms relating to his Crohn’s disease."

Nine months after the start of chiropractic, the patient went to his endocrinologist for a follow-up visit. The study reported that at that time "...the patient's doctor reviewed his most recent colonoscopy and declared that the patient had complete medical remission of his initial diagnosis."

The study authors explain the chiropractic approach by saying, "Chiropractic's philosophy in health care involves a vitalistic approach emphasizing the removal of interferences to the nervous system while allowing the body to restore itself to health, healing from within and going from a state of dis-ease to that of homeostasis."


Slow Weight Gain and Difficulty Feeding Resolved in Two Infants Under Chiropractic Care

Posted: September 13, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt
 

Slow Weight Gain and Difficulty Feeding Resolved in Two Infants Under Chiropractic Care

The Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics published two case studies in their July 2018 issue that documented the resolution of issues related to poor breast feeding and weight gain in two infants as a result of chiropractic care.

The study begins by noting that, "Faltering growth, previously termed failure to thrive, has been defined as a slower rate of weight gain in infants and young children than expected for age and sex." It is common for newborns to lose weight in the first few days after birth. Large, or persistent weight loss is, however, a concern that should be addressed by parents and healthcare workers.

Organic health issues can cause faltering growth. However, this is rare and can be ruled out with an examination. Most cases of faltering growth in newborns have to do with a feeding or processing of food issues. In the past, many issues were blamed for faltering growth. However, several studies have concluded that there is no association between faltering growth and social economic factors such as parental occupation, education, maternal eating habits, or alcohol consumption during pregnancy.

The first case in this study involved a three-week-old male infant who was brought into a midwifery and chiropractic feeding clinic because of difficulty breastfeeding and slow weight gain. The baby boy's mother was experiencing severe breast soreness due to the excessive time that feeding would require. Typically, it would take 45 minutes or longer to feed the infant with a frequency of every two hours in the day and three times during the night. At birth, the baby weighed just slightly over seven pounds. After three weeks, the baby had lost weight and weighed only 6 lbs. 4 oz.

Chiropractic care was started on this infant with parental consent. Initially, in the first four weeks of care, the infant started to show signs of improved feeding and weight gain which were followed by a slowing of both feeding and weight gain. Chiropractic care was continued, and the infant was given the addition of a high calorie formula supplementation. The mother eventually discontinued breastfeeding due to the length of time it was taking and her soreness. By 22 weeks, regular formula was being used and the baby's eating and sleeping habits returned to normal.

The second infant in this study was an eight-week-old girl with irregular feeding habits, slow weight gain, and discomfort lying on her back. At eight weeks, the infant girl had still not returned to her original birth weight. During the day, she would feed nearly continuously, with each feeding session lasting between 40 and 90 minutes. At night, the girl would sleep through the night with only one feeding session lasting between 60 and 90 minutes.

A 4-week course of chiropractic care was initiated. During that time, the infant showed improvement that was progressive and continuous. The baby showed larger gaps between feeding and an increase in normal daytime sleeping. This allowed the mother to engage in additional normal daily activities.

In the discussion, the authors noted the importance of trying to continue breast feeding in cases of faltering growth, "If concerns present about faltering growth in an infant, a feeding assessment should be performed. Every effort should be made to continue breastfeeding for the health of the infant and mother." They also noted the importance chiropractic played in such cases by stating, "Chiropractic care was key to improve the baby's use of muscles of mastication and to allow for comfort in supine sleep."


The Critical Cervical Curve

Posted: September 5, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

 

From the back, your spine should be in alignment. A sideways curve is called scoliosis and can produce nerve interference, affecting organs and tissues controlled and regulated by the nerves emerging from the spinal column in that area.

But from the side we want to see four curves. Because the nerves passing through the neck influence the entire body, the spinal curve in the neck is especially important. Besides having uncompromised nerve flow to and from the body, the normal, graceful forward curve is essential so you can turn to the right and left to look over your shoulder.

If you know someone who is far too dependent upon their rear view mirrors (or their car’s back up camera), or who tends to turn their upper body to look at you, encourage them to give us a call.

A thorough examination can determine if they’ve lost their cervical curve and whether they’re a good candidate for chiropractic care.


Double Footling Breech Presentation Resolved with Chiropractic

Posted: August 28, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt
 

Double Footling Breech Presentation Resolved with Chiropractic

On December 11, 2017, the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a case study documenting the resolution of a pregnant mother's footling breech presentation under chiropractic care. A footling breech presentation is when one or both of the baby’s feet are in the downward position and are therefore more likely to be born first instead of the normal head first position.

The study begins by noting that about 3-4% of pregnancies result in a breech presentation. Current medical thinking is that a breech birth represents a significant medical threat and therefore a Cesarean birth is normally recommended in these cases. Since, for many reasons, a normal head-first vaginal birth is preferable to a cesarean birth, any reasonable process that can correct the breech should be explored.

In this case, a 38-year-old pregnant woman sought a chiropractic consultation and evaluation. The woman was in her 30th week of a pregnancy with twins that were in the footling breech position. She had previously had three individual pregnancies and delivered each child without complication. The woman had never experienced chiropractic care before. She was physically active by playing volleyball and swimming.

A chiropractic examination included palpation and a postural analysis. This showed a forward position of her head, as well as an uneven pelvis. There was also an abnormal motion of the pelvic bones when put through a range of motion test. Based on the findings, chiropractic adjustments were given.

Over the next 11 days, the patient was seen 5 times. In that time, both of the fetuses turned from the footling breech position down to a normal vertex, head-down position. This correction of the position of her fetuses allowed her to deliver her twins vaginally, without complication or medication.

The study also reviewed several previous studies showing chiropractic helping correct breech presentations and allowing for normal vaginal delivery. In one of those documented cases, a breech presentation self corrected after four chiropractic adjustments. In another case, the breech corrected after one week of chiropractic.

The overall body of evidence for breech presentations being resolved under chiropractic continues to grow. The authors of this study reviewed several other studies showing that chiropractic helped in those cases. In this particular case, the results were especially important because of the woman being pregnant with twins. In their conclusion the authors wrote, "This case report provides supporting evidence on the benefits of chiropractic care for the pregnant woman with fetal malpresentation."


Resolution of Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia and Headaches with Chiropractic

Posted: August 13, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

Resolution of Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia and Headaches with Chiropractic

The October 4, 2017, issue of the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a case study documenting the resolution, under chiropractic care, of a patient suffering from anxiety, depression, insomnia, scoliosis and cluster headaches, who also had an opioid addiction.

This study begins by noting that anxiety is one of the most commonly diagnosed psychiatric disorders, affecting 18.1% of the population. Anxiety disorders are often diagnosed with other disorders such as depression and substance abuse. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition - Text Revision, there is 12 different diagnoses that fall under the general heading of anxiety disorders.

The typical medical treatments for anxiety involve drugs. The problems and side effects with such medications are well documented, as is their highly addictive nature. For these reasons, and because there can be significant withdrawal issues, many of these drugs are not recommended for long term use.

In this case, a 21-year-old man presented himself to a chiropractor for a variety of issues. The man was suffering from cluster headaches, anxiety, depression, and insomnia. At that time, he was also recovering from treatment for substance abuse of opioid painkillers. He reported that he had been suffering with his issues for the prior 14 months.

The patient reported that medication seemed to reduce his symptoms. However with medication, he rated his headaches as a 10 out of 10 with 10 being the most severe. He also rated his anxiety as a 10 out of 10, and he rated his insomnia issues as 10 out of 10 when not treated with medications. Due to his complaints and his treatment for opioid addiction, the man had dropped out of college 11 months earlier.

A chiropractic examination was performed which included spinal palpation, range of motion, and spinal x-rays. The x-rays showed a loss of normal curvatures in the side views of the neck and mid back of the man’s spine. It was also noted that a scoliosis was present when viewed on the front-to-back x-rays. From these findings, it was determined that subluxations were present. The man was started on a series of specific chiropractic adjustments to address his subluxations. After a specific time period, a reassessment and follow-up x-rays were done to monitor the progress.

The follow-up x-rays taken showed a 24% improvement in the neck curvature, and a 10 degree improvement in his scoliosis. Over time, all x-rays showed improvements in the various improper curvatures seen on the original x-rays.

The study reports that one month after starting chiropractic care, the man had improved to the point where he was able to restart college. After 12 months of care, he reported being off all headache medication. He also stated that his anxiety and insomnia had drastically improved to the point where he was able to lower his medications. The report noted that after 20 months of regular chiropractic care, the patient was off all medications except for small amounts of anxiety medication as needed.

In their conclusion, the study authors wrote, "Subluxation-based chiropractic care played a role in the resolution of the patient's complaints. The patient was able to stop all medications and leads a productive life symptom free." The study reported that the changes in this man's life were profound enough that he enrolled in chiropractic college 20 months after starting chiropractic care himself.


Reduction of Seizures & Self-Aggression Following Chiropractic Care

Posted: August 7, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

The Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research published a case study on April 5, 2018, documenting the reduction of epileptic absence seizures and self-aggression behavior in a male toddler following chiropractic care. This type of seizure is more common in children.

Absence seizures are a type of seizure where the victim can slip into a state of unaware staring. During this time, they are unresponsive and can seem to be staring off into space. According to the Epilepsy Foundation, Absence Seizures "…are a type of generalized onset seizures, meaning they begin in both sides of the brain at the same time. An older term is petit mal seizures. They begin and end abruptly, lasting only a few seconds. Absence seizures can be so brief they sometimes are mistaken for daydreaming and may not be detected for months."

In this case, a 3-year-old baby boy was brought to a chiropractic teaching clinic by his parents for consultation and possible care. For the past two years, the boy had been suffering with absence seizures. When the boy was 1-year-old, his parents would find him staring into space. His parents would attempt to talk to him or snap their fingers in front of his face, but he would be non-responsive for 15-20 seconds. Once the seizure ended, the boy would just resume the activity he was doing prior to the event.

By the time the boy was 2-years-old, these seizures became more frequent and were happening about five times per day. After his second birthday, the seizures became more violent being described as, "…he began having clonic seizures where he would stare off and his arms would quickly jerk back and forth, bending at the elbows and going back and forth across his body for approximately 15-20 seconds." At the conclusion of these seizures, the boy would once again resume his prior activity. When he began to talk, the episodes could interrupt him in mid-sentence. Afterward, he would just continue his sentence. It was reported that the boy was never aware of his seizures. As time went on, the boy started hitting himself in his head with his fists between 5 to 10 times per day.

A chiropractic examination was performed which included static and motion palpation of the spine and spinal musculature, as well as spinal thermal scans, and postural leg length checks. Based upon the examination, it was determined that there was a subluxation present at the first cervical vertebrae (C1) located at the top of the neck. With the consent of the parents, a specific chiropractic adjustment was given to the boy to address the C1 subluxation. Following the adjustment, rechecks of the initial exam finding were performed to verify that the adjustment was effective. The boy was scheduled to receive 2 adjustments per week for the following eight weeks.

After the first adjustment, the study records that the boy did not experience any seizures that day. Over the next two weeks, the number of seizures had reduced from five to only two per day. After eight weeks, the boy's parents reported that their son was only having one absence seizure every other day. They also reported that their son was no longer hitting his head with his fists.

The authors of this study also reviewed additional studies on the subject of epileptic seizures and chiropractic care. They noted that numerous other studies also found similar results in patients with seizure problems. They commented that this study adds to the body of evidence supporting chiropractic care for patients suffering from seizures. "This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in abating the frequency and intensity of epileptic seizures in infants."


Neck Pain and Pain Down Arm Helped with Chiropractic

Posted: July 30, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

Neck Pain and Pain Down Arm Helped with Chiropractic

The Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a case study on January 4, 2018, documenting the improvement in neck pain and arm pain in an elderly patient undergoing chiropractic care. The term used in this study for this condition is radiculopathy.

The word radiculopathy comes from two Greek and Latin words meaning root, and illness. In this usage, it means a pain that originates at a nerve root and runs away from that origin, typically down an arm or leg. Cervical radiculopathy means that the problem has its origin in the neck. According to WebMD, "Cervical radiculopathy is the damage or disturbance of nerve function that results if one of the nerve roots near the cervical vertebrae is compressed. Damage to nerve roots in the cervical area can cause pain and the loss of sensation along the nerve's pathway into the arm and hand, depending on where the damaged roots are located."

The researchers in this study note that, "In younger people cervical radiculopathy is often caused by a disc herniation or some form of trauma which directly impacts on the nerve in the intervertebral foramina (IVF)." The IVFs are the openings between each vertebra where the nerves exit from the spinal column. They report that in older patients, pressure on nerves at the IVF typically occurs from degenerative or arthritic changes with a narrowing of the IVF known as stenosis.

In this case, a 74-year-old woman suffering from the symptoms of cervical radiculopathy presented herself for chiropractic care at a teaching clinic in New Zealand. Her symptoms included pain for several years, with numbness and tingling down her left arm that had gotten worse in the last few weeks. She was also complaining of weakness in her left arm and the inability to grasp heavy objects with her left hand.

One year prior to her chiropractic visit, her MD took neck x-rays which showed calcium buildup and disc degeneration in her neck. At that time, she did not consider her symptoms to be affecting her daily life so no care was rendered.

A chiropractic examination was performed, and it was noted that her cervical range of motion was limited in all directions. Neck rotation did cause an increase in pain and numbness in her left arm and hand. She also exhibited a decrease in the ability to feel sensations along portions of her left arm. Her finger grip strength on her left side was significantly reduced.

The findings were consistent with the presence of vertebral subluxation, and specific chiropractic adjustments were started at the rate of twice per week. By the 11th visit, the woman started noticing a decrease in the frequency of episodes of pain and numbness in her left arm. She reported that her problems were no longer present 24 hours per day and was only exacerbated during lifting her arm for long periods. She also reported an improvement in the quality of her sleep. A progress examination was performed, which included neurological testing, which showed further improvement in sensory ability of the C6 and C7 dermatomes on her left arm.

In their conclusion, the authors wrote, "Cervical foraminal stenosis causing radiculopathy is a problem that affects a large portion of the older population. This case study, and previously reported research, suggests that chiropractic care may benefit some people suffering from radiculopathy."


Resolution of Adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Following Chiropractic Care

Posted: July 25, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

The Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a case study on June 11, 2018, showing chiropractic facilitating the resolution of adult attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

The study begins by reports that ADHD is one of the most common psychological disorders in children. The study also notes that ADHD cannot be diagnosed in an adult because the diagnostic reference book used to classify metal illnesses, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM-5), which states that ADHD must be diagnosed before the age of 12 for it to be considered a true state of the disorder.

It is estimated that between 5% and 8% of children in the U.S have ADHD. The condition is more common in girls than boys. As children develop into adults, many seem to outgrow the symptoms of ADHD. However, estimates are that 40-70% of children will continue to experience symptoms of ADHD as adults. Accordingly, between 3-6% of the adult population is estimated to have adult ADHD. According to WebMD, every adult who is considered to have ADHD had the condition as a child but may not have been diagnosed with it.

Adults with ADHD tend to have more instability at work, higher rates of incarceration, lower socioeconomic status, high rates of divorce as well as more frequent job changes, and more minor violations such as speeding tickets.

In this case, a 38-year-old man presented himself to the chiropractor. The man was suffering with a variety of conditions including adult-onset attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, constant headaches, incapacitating low back pain, numbness in the back and sciatica in his left leg. He described his conditions as excruciating and constant, interfering with his daily activities. He was taking several medications including one for his ADHD for the past 13 years.  Even though the criteria for diagnosis of adult ADHD does not exist, his MD diagnosed him with the condition at the age of 23.

A chiropractic examination noted muscle spasms over much of his spine, reduced ranges of motion, and postural abnormalities. A heat reading thermal scan showed significant abnormal variations in surface temperature over his spine.

Based upon the findings of the examination, it was determined that subluxations were present and specific chiropractic spinal adjustments were started. Using a scale of 1 to 100 to rate the patient’s pain, the initial pain rating before chiropractic was 60 out of 100, with 100 being the worst. After chiropractic care was started, the pain rating had dropped to 36 out of 100.  After one month of care, the man’s spinal range of motion had shown significant improvement. There was also a notable decrease in his muscle spasms.

Within a month of beginning chiropractic care, the man reported that he had met his goals of being able to focus and exercise. He reported an 80% improvement of his symptoms. After two months of chiropractic, he had discontinued all his ADHD medication. He commented that he felt more focused and energized than he had ever felt before.

In the authors’ conclusion they wrote, "Patients suffering from ADHD are highly effected by the symptoms that manifest, interrupting their ability to function in any setting. If the removal of vertebral subluxation complexes can be correlated to a reduction or resolution in symptoms, chiropractic could greatly improve the quality of life for ADHD patients."

 


Improvement in Motor Developmental Delay in a 15-month Old Baby Following Chiropractic

Posted: July 16, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

Improvement in Motor Developmental Delay in a 15-month Old Baby Following Chiropractic

A recent study showed chiropractic helping correct motor development delay in a 15-month old baby. The documented study was published in January 2018 in the Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics. The study titled, "Improvement in motor developmental delay in a 15-month old male following chiropractic care to correct vertebral subluxation: A case report," was conducted in Auckland, New Zealand, with the assistance of the New Zealand College of Chiropractic, in Auckland, New Zealand.

The study authors begin by defining the issue. "Developmental delay is defined as a child who is not meeting a range of milestones at the expected rate of development." They go on to explain the areas of delay by saying, "Typically, this involves multiple areas of development including cognitive skills, social and emotional skills, speech and language skills, fine and gross motor skills and activities of daily living."

Developmental delay is measured against six areas defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as "windows of achievement." Each of these have different age ranges depending on the level advancement for the age of the child. These achievements include sitting without support, standing with assistance, hands-&-knees crawling, walking with assistance, standing alone, and finally walking alone. Not being able to achieve these tasks within the timeframe set forth in the WHO guidelines is considered developmentally delayed.

In this case, a 15-month-old boy who was suffering from developmental delay was brought to the chiropractor. The boy was unable to crawl or creep in any way. He was unable to pull himself up to stand, or to stand alone or walk. From around 6 months of age, he was able to sit upright, and from around 9 months old, he was able to roll. This level of ability was way behind what should be expected which would allow the boy to be considered to be developmentally delayed. The boy's speech was not advanced but was not considered to be delayed in any way for his age.

A chiropractic examination was performed which revealed multiple areas of spinal and pelvic restrictive movement and alterations of muscle tone. The boy exhibited reduced ability to balance and difficulty in supporting himself on his hands and knees.

With consent from the parents, chiropractic care was started on the boy for correction of vertebral subluxations with multiple visits per week being performed in the initial stage of care.

The study results showed that, following the first two adjustments, the child started to crawl on his hands and knees by himself without needing assistance. After one additional visit, the boy was able to pull himself up to a standing position. Progress continued as it was reported that after the sixth visit, the boy was able to crawl on his hands and knees with ease and began letting go while in a standing position. After seven chiropractic visits, the boy began to take unassisted steps with increasing confidence. During the entire time of the chiropractic care, it was reported that there were no adverse reactions identified or reported.

In their discussion, the authors of this case study summed up the results by saying, "Motor development improvements were reported in a 15-month-old male over the course of 16-weeks of chiropractic care. The child had initially presented with motor development delay, with inability to crawl in any manner, stand or walk unassisted."


Increased Lung Function and Quality of Life with Chiropractic

Posted: July 12, 2018
By: Dr. Meredith Oudt

The Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a study on October 26, 2017, documenting chiropractic helping improve lung function and improve quality of life in a series of patients. The patients in this study all had an increased mid-back curvature known as hyperkyphosis and sometimes referred to as a hump.

The middle part of the back, known as the thoracic or dorsal spine should have a normal "c" shaped curvature from front to back with the apex of that backward curvature being near the center of the middle back. This normal curvature is referred to a thoracic kyphosis. When that curvature increases, giving the person a hunched over look, that is referred to as a hyperkyphosis.

Hyperkyphosis in children is usually due to some underlying pathological, or developmental issue. It is more common in seniors as it is estimated that age-related hyperkyphosis affects 20 to 40 percent of the elderly population. The authors of the study point out that there is no consensus on an exact proper amount of curvature for the thoracic spine. However, it is accepted that a curvature of between 20 to 29 degrees from childhood till age 30 is within normal. An angle above 40 degrees in adolescence is considered to be hyperkyphosis. This curvature will normally increase with age.

This study followed three separate cases of patients who were totally symptom-free, but had a measurable hyperkyphosis of the mid back. Two men, ages 42 and 49, along with a 55-year-old woman were included in this study. Due to their hyperkyphosis, none of the three patients were able to have their upper thoracic spines make contact with the chiropractic table while they were laying on their backs.

In all three patients, the initial examinations and x-rays were, as the researchers stated, "...focused on the collection of objective information to assess neurological dysfunction and determine the presence of vertebral subluxation." They went on to note that, "According to the Association of Chiropractic Colleges, a subluxation is defined as a 'complex of functional and/or structural and/or pathological articular changes that compromise neural integrity and may influence organ system function and general health'." Lung volumes were also measured on these patients as a baseline for comparison later.

Using a similar protocol on all three patients, specific forms of chiropractic care were done on these three individuals. Follow-up evaluations with x-rays were taken 10 weeks after the initiation of chiropractic care. Lung volumes were also measured again. One man and the one woman showed an increase in lung volume. The remaining man had traveled overseas and contracted pneumonia. Therefore his lung volume had not improved when tested. However, the study recorded that all three of the patients showed a reduction of their hyperkyphosis ranging from 12.1% to 22.7% improvement.

In their summation of the results, the researchers stated, "Reduction of the thoracic kyphosis angle was recorded in all patients with an average decrease of over 10 degrees. Increased lung function in both peak expiratory flow (PEF), and forced expiratory volume (FEV) were recorded along with improvements in SF-36 scores documenting improved quality of life."

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