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THORACIC OUTLET 
SYNDROME 
Dr. Nanda gopal 
Velagapudi 
Dr. Avinash Katkam 
Dr Giridhar Boyapati
First clinical description given by 
A.Cooper 1821 
W H Willshire described about 
cervical rib 
H Coote first resection o...
Definition 
• Thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS)- a 
collection of symptoms brought about by 
abnormal compression of the 
neu...
• Boundaries of TO 
• posteriorly: T1 vertebral body 
• laterally: first rib and costal cartilage 
• anteriorly: manubrium...
ANATOMY 
 Interscalene 
triangle 
- Inferiorly : 1st rib 
- Ant : scaleneus 
anterior 
- Post : scaleneus 
medius. 
Costo...
contents 
• viscera 
– thymus 
– trachea 
– oesophagus 
– lung apices 
• vessels, nerves and 
lymphatics 
– common carotid...
Interscalene triangle
Costoclavicular space
Subcoracoid area
Anatomic sections show the compartments of tthhee tthhoorraacciicc oouuttlleett 
Fig. (b) Section obtained after removal o...
Anatomic sections show the compartments of the thoracic outlet 
Fig. Anatomic sections show the 
compartments of the thora...
• Race 
No racial predilection exists. 
• Sex 
Thoracic outlet syndrome is traditionally 
more common in women than in men...
Principal Causes of TOS
Cervical rib
Cervical rib 
• It is a superneumary rib that arises from 
seventh cervical rib or rarely from sixth or 
fifth cervical ve...
types 
• Type1 small projection from costal faset. 
Less than 2.5cm 
• Type 2 projection beyond transverse 
process. > 2.5...
Classification
SSuubbggrroouupp 11 -- ((nneeuurroollooggiicc 
ttyyppee)) 
• –95% of cases 
This type is secondary to compression 
of the ...
Subgroup 2 - (the venous 
type): 
• 3-4% of cases. 
Venous thrombosis may be categorized into 
primary and secondary throm...
SSuubbggrroouupp 33 ((the arterial type): 
• 1-2% of cases. 
This type is associated with the most 
serious complications,...
Neurogenic TOS 
• Etiology 
– Hyperextension neck injury 
(whiplash) 
– Repetitive stress injuries
Neurogenic TOS 
• Predisposing Factors 
– Scalene muscle anomalies 
– Narrow scalene triangles 
– Congenital ligaments/ban...
Neurogenic TOS 
• Pathophysiology 
– Neck trauma stretches and tears scalene 
muscle fibers 
– Swelling of muscle belly  ...
• Symptoms 
– Pain, parathesias, numbness, weakness 
throughout affected hand/arm 
• Not necessarily localized to peripher...
Neurogenic TOS 
• Symptoms 
– Occipital headaches 
– Perceived muscle weakness 
• Actual weakness and atrophy are rare 
– ...
Neurogenic TOS 
• Pectoralis minor syndrome 
– Compression of neurovascular bundle 
under the pec minor 
– Pain over anter...
Venous TOS 
• Etiology 
– Developmental 
anomalies of 
costoclavicular space 
– Repetitive arm 
activities – throwing, 
sw...
Venous TOS 
• Predisposing Factors 
– Relationship of vein to 
subclavius tendon and 
costoclavicular ligament 
– Decrease...
• Acute occlusion 
– Pain 
– Tightness 
– Discomfort during exercise 
– Edema 
– Cyanosis 
Increased venous pattern 
Tende...
Arterial TOS 
• Etiology 
– Cervical or anomalous first rib 
– Anomalous anterior scalene insertion
Arterial TOS 
• Pathophysiology 
– Arterial compression 
resulting in post-stenotic 
dilatation or aneurysm 
– Distal embo...
Interscalene triangle Artery , Nerves 
Costoclavicular space Vein 
Subcoracoid area Artery, Vein , Nerves
Arterial TOS 
• Symptoms 
–Digital or hand ischemia 
–Cutaneous ulcerations 
–Forearm pain with use 
–Pulsatile supraclavi...
DIAGNOSIS 
• CClliinniiccaall mmaanneeuuvveerrss 
• RRaaddiiooggrraapphhyy 
• UUllttrraassoonnooggrraapphhyy 
• MMaaggnnee...
Adson maneuver 
Patient is instructed to 
take and hold a deep 
breath and extend his 
neck fully and then 
asked to turn ...
TThhee RRooooss tteesstt 
• The patient repeatedly 
clenches and unclenches the 
fists while keeping the arms 
abducted an...
Hyperabduction maneuver 
• Evaluates compression of the 
neurovascular bundle between the 
coracoid process and the pector...
Wright's hyperabdution test
Halsted's Costoclavicular 
maneuver 
• Evaluates compression of the 
neurovascular bundle between the clavicle 
and the fi...
Diagnosis and 
Treatment
Diagnosis 
• “the most accurate diagnosis of TOS…must 
rely on a careful history and thorough, 
appropriate physical exami...
DD nTOS 
• Carpal tunnel syndrome 
• Ulnar nerve compression or neuritis. 
• Rotator cuff tendinitis 
• Cervical spine str...
DD aTOS 
• Other sources of emboli: Cardiac and aortic 
arch causes, coagulopathies 
• Vasculitis 
• Radiation-induced art...
Imaging 
• X-rays 
– Cervical rib 
– Elongated C7 transverse process 
– Hypoplastic 1st rib 
– Callous formation from clav...
• CT/MRI can rule out other pathologies 
• Magnetic rreessoonnaannccee ((MMRR)) aannggiiooggrraapphhyy and 
computed tomog...
• an Angiography andd vveennooggrraapphhyy remain 
the criterion standards for the radiologic 
diagnosis of these conditio...
• aTOS 
– Segmental arterial pressures 
– Angiography 
• vTOS 
– Duplex U/S 
– Venography 
• Consider bilateral studies
EMG/NCS 
• Reduction in NCV and low amplitude motor 
responses 
• Positive results 
– Confirms the clinical diagnosis 
– P...
Electrophysiology Testing 
• Medial antebrachial cutaneous nerve (MAC) 
– Lowest branch of inferior trunk of brachial 
ple...
Scalene muscle block 
• Most useful when diagnosis is unclear 
• Patient in supine position with neck 
hyperextended and t...
• 5- 7ml of plane bupivacaine and 1ml of 
betamethasone is injected. 
• Relief of symptoms ranging from few days 
to weeks...
Treatment 
Conservative management aims to increase the 
space in the thoracic outlet area and to relieve 
compression on ...
Pain control 
• Muscle relaxants 
• NSAIDS 
• Ultrasonography with ionatophorosis 
• Transcutaneous electric nerve stimula...
Edema control 
• Edema gloves 
• Compressive garments 
• Elevation of limb 
• Active range of motion exercises 
• Retrogra...
Ergonomics 
• Work posture related changes 
• Relative adjustment of chair height so that forearm rests 
comfortably and w...
Exercises 
Involves relaxing shoulder girdle and stretching 
the scalene and pectoral muscles. 
Neck : neck side bending e...
Treatment nTOS 
• Neck stretching 
• Posture correction 
• Avoid neck traction, 
weights, resistance 
exercises, 
strength...
Surgical decompression 
Symptoms persists beyond 2 months of 
conservative management. 
 Associated vascular compression...
• 1st rib resection and scalenectomy are 
standard procedures for TOS 
• 1st rib resection is recommended for lower 
type ...
Scalenectomy 
• Incision :8cms incision, 1.5cm above middle 
third of clavicle. 
• 80-90% of scalenus anterior muscle and ...
1st rib resection 
1. Transaxillary approach 
2. Supraclavicular approach 
3. Infraclavicular approach 
4. Posterior appro...
Transaxillary approach ( Roos approach) 
• Transverse Incision at the level of third rib just below 
the axillary hair lin...
– Disadvantages 
• Incomplete exposure of entire scalene triangle 
• Difficulty achieving brachial plexus neurolysis 
• Li...
• Supraclavicular approach 
– Advantages 
• Wide exposure of all anatomic structures 
• Permits complete resection of ante...
Infraclavicular approach 
• ADVANTAGES 
• Ideal for venous and arterial obstruction. 
• Venous embolectomy. 
• Arterial re...
Posterior approach 
• Advantages 
• cervical rib can be easily resected. 
• Sympathetectomy can be done 
• Disadvantages 
...
Thoracoscopic First Rib Resesction 
• Three 10mm portal are made 
-1st anterior 3rd ICS 
-2nd lateral 5th ICS 
- 3rd later...
Adjunctive procedures 
– Pectoralis minor tenotomy. 
– Sympathectomy :
Treatment vTOS 
• Anticoagulation therapy with heparin and oral 
anticoagulants. 
• Fibrinolytics 
• Catheter-directed thr...
Complications 
• Nerve injury 
bracial plexus injury 
Long thoracic nerve of bell 
Phrenic nerve 
Intercostobrachial nerve...
• Thoracic duct injury 
Lymphatic fistula 
Lymphocele 
Chylothorax 
Pleural complication 
pleural damage 
Pneumotharax 
Pl...
Recurrent nTOS 
• Postoperative scarring most common cause. 
• Recurrence usually is seen within 3months. 
• To minimize s...
Initial 
procedure 
Recurrent 
procedure 
Adequate 1st rib 
resection 
scalenectomy 
More than 1cm of first 
rib stump. 
R...
Thank you.
thoracic outlet syndrome
thoracic outlet syndrome
thoracic outlet syndrome
thoracic outlet syndrome
thoracic outlet syndrome
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thoracic outlet syndrome

  1. 1. THORACIC OUTLET SYNDROME Dr. Nanda gopal Velagapudi Dr. Avinash Katkam Dr Giridhar Boyapati
  2. 2. First clinical description given by A.Cooper 1821 W H Willshire described about cervical rib H Coote first resection of cervical rib. In 1956 Peet introduced the term thoracic outlet syndrome.
  3. 3. Definition • Thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS)- a collection of symptoms brought about by abnormal compression of the neurovascular bundle by bony, ligamentous or muscular structers in the narrow space between clavicle and 1st rib – the thoracic outlet.
  4. 4. • Boundaries of TO • posteriorly: T1 vertebral body • laterally: first rib and costal cartilage • anteriorly: manubrium sterni
  5. 5. ANATOMY  Interscalene triangle - Inferiorly : 1st rib - Ant : scaleneus anterior - Post : scaleneus medius. Costoclavicular space Ant : clavicle, subclavius muscle Post medial: 1st rib Post lateral: superior border of scapula.
  6. 6. contents • viscera – thymus – trachea – oesophagus – lung apices • vessels, nerves and lymphatics – common carotid arteries – confluences of internal jugular and subclavian veins – phrenic nerves – vagus nerves – recurrent laryngeal nerves – thoracic duct • prevertebral fascia • muscles – sternocleidomastoid muscle – anterior and middle scalene muscles – sternohyoid muscle – sternothyroid muscle
  7. 7. Interscalene triangle
  8. 8. Costoclavicular space
  9. 9. Subcoracoid area
  10. 10. Anatomic sections show the compartments of tthhee tthhoorraacciicc oouuttlleett Fig. (b) Section obtained after removal of the pectoralis minor muscle shows the neurovascular bundle. C = clavicle, straight black arrow = axillary artery, curved black arrow = axillary vein, white arrow = brachial plexus. Demondion X et al. Radiographics 2006;26:1735-1750
  11. 11. Anatomic sections show the compartments of the thoracic outlet Fig. Anatomic sections show the compartments of the thoracic outlet. (a) Section obtained after removal of the pectoralis major muscle shows the costoclavicular space (red oval) and retropectoralis minor space (yellow oval). Pmi = pectoralis minor muscle. Demondion X et al. Radiographics 2006;26:1735-1750
  12. 12. • Race No racial predilection exists. • Sex Thoracic outlet syndrome is traditionally more common in women than in men, with a female-to-male ratio as high as 3:1. • Age Thoracic outlet syndrome is most common in people aged 10-50 years
  13. 13. Principal Causes of TOS
  14. 14. Cervical rib
  15. 15. Cervical rib • It is a superneumary rib that arises from seventh cervical rib or rarely from sixth or fifth cervical vertebrae. • incidence 0.5-0.6% • Bilateral in 60-80 % • Symptomatic in 10 -15%
  16. 16. types • Type1 small projection from costal faset. Less than 2.5cm • Type 2 projection beyond transverse process. > 2.5cm • Type 3 nearly complete rib which is partly fibrous • Type 4 complete rib with costal cartilage attached to 1st rib or sternum.
  17. 17. Classification
  18. 18. SSuubbggrroouupp 11 -- ((nneeuurroollooggiicc ttyyppee)) • –95% of cases This type is secondary to compression of the brachial plexus caused by various soft tissue and bony abnormalities at the point where the nerves pass between the anterior and middle scalene muscles.
  19. 19. Subgroup 2 - (the venous type): • 3-4% of cases. Venous thrombosis may be categorized into primary and secondary thrombosis based on the etiology. Primary venous thoracic outlet syndrome, or primary venous thrombosis, is also called Paget-Schrötter syndrome named after the 2 individuals who first described this entity: Paget, who described it in 1875, and von Schrötter, in 1884.
  20. 20. SSuubbggrroouupp 33 ((the arterial type): • 1-2% of cases. This type is associated with the most serious complications, including limb ischemia (which may result in the loss of the affected upper extremity).
  21. 21. Neurogenic TOS • Etiology – Hyperextension neck injury (whiplash) – Repetitive stress injuries
  22. 22. Neurogenic TOS • Predisposing Factors – Scalene muscle anomalies – Narrow scalene triangles – Congenital ligaments/bands – Cervical ribs
  23. 23. Neurogenic TOS • Pathophysiology – Neck trauma stretches and tears scalene muscle fibers – Swelling of muscle belly  pain, parathesias, numbness, weakness – Scarring/fibrosis of muscle belly  occipital headaches.
  24. 24. • Symptoms – Pain, parathesias, numbness, weakness throughout affected hand/arm • Not necessarily localized to peripheral nerve distribution – Extension to shoulder, neck, upper back – “Upper plexus” disorders – “Lower plexus” disorders
  25. 25. Neurogenic TOS • Symptoms – Occipital headaches – Perceived muscle weakness • Actual weakness and atrophy are rare – Vasomotor symptoms • Vasospasm, edema, hypersensitivity (CRPS)
  26. 26. Neurogenic TOS • Pectoralis minor syndrome – Compression of neurovascular bundle under the pec minor – Pain over anterior chest and axilla – Fewer head/neck symptoms
  27. 27. Venous TOS • Etiology – Developmental anomalies of costoclavicular space – Repetitive arm activities – throwing, swimming, overhead activities.
  28. 28. Venous TOS • Predisposing Factors – Relationship of vein to subclavius tendon and costoclavicular ligament – Decrease in dimensions of costoclavicular space • Repetitive trauma to vein causing stenosis, thrombosis
  29. 29. • Acute occlusion – Pain – Tightness – Discomfort during exercise – Edema – Cyanosis Increased venous pattern Tenderness over the axillary vein Gangrene rarely
  30. 30. Arterial TOS • Etiology – Cervical or anomalous first rib – Anomalous anterior scalene insertion
  31. 31. Arterial TOS • Pathophysiology – Arterial compression resulting in post-stenotic dilatation or aneurysm – Distal embolization of thrombus
  32. 32. Interscalene triangle Artery , Nerves Costoclavicular space Vein Subcoracoid area Artery, Vein , Nerves
  33. 33. Arterial TOS • Symptoms –Digital or hand ischemia –Cutaneous ulcerations –Forearm pain with use –Pulsatile supraclavicular mass/bruit
  34. 34. DIAGNOSIS • CClliinniiccaall mmaanneeuuvveerrss • RRaaddiiooggrraapphhyy • UUllttrraassoonnooggrraapphhyy • MMaaggnneettiicc rreessoonnaannccee ((MMRR)) aannggiiooggrraapphhyy • Computed tomographic ((CCTT)) aannggiiooggrraapphhyy • AAnnggiiooggrraapphhyy aanndd vveennooggrraapphhyy
  35. 35. Adson maneuver Patient is instructed to take and hold a deep breath and extend his neck fully and then asked to turn his head towards the side being examined. Obliteration or diminuation in the radial pulse suggest compression.
  36. 36. TThhee RRooooss tteesstt • The patient repeatedly clenches and unclenches the fists while keeping the arms abducted and externally rotated (palms forward and upward). The elbows are braced slightly behind the frontal plane for 3mins. • The test is positive when symptoms are reproduced with this maneuver. • A positive test is very suggestive of the thoracic outlet syndrome.
  37. 37. Hyperabduction maneuver • Evaluates compression of the neurovascular bundle between the coracoid process and the pectoralis minor muscle. • The patient externally rotates the shoulders and extends the arms out from the chest and then above the head.
  38. 38. Wright's hyperabdution test
  39. 39. Halsted's Costoclavicular maneuver • Evaluates compression of the neurovascular bundle between the clavicle and the first rib. • The patient assumes an exaggerated military position with shoulders pushed backward and pressed downward.
  40. 40. Diagnosis and Treatment
  41. 41. Diagnosis • “the most accurate diagnosis of TOS…must rely on a careful history and thorough, appropriate physical examination” » David B Roos, MD • No single diagnostic test has sufficient specificity to prove or exclude the diagnosis
  42. 42. DD nTOS • Carpal tunnel syndrome • Ulnar nerve compression or neuritis. • Rotator cuff tendinitis • Cervical spine strain/sprain • Fibromyositis • Cervical disk disease • Cervical arthritis • Brachial plexus injury
  43. 43. DD aTOS • Other sources of emboli: Cardiac and aortic arch causes, coagulopathies • Vasculitis • Radiation-induced arteritis • Connective tissue disorders • Arterial dissection • Atherosclerotic disease • Traumatic
  44. 44. Imaging • X-rays – Cervical rib – Elongated C7 transverse process – Hypoplastic 1st rib – Callous formation from clavicle or 1st rib fracture – Pseudoarthrosis of 1st rib • Unable to image soft tissue anomalies and fibromuscular bands – seen only at time of surgery
  45. 45. • CT/MRI can rule out other pathologies • Magnetic rreessoonnaannccee ((MMRR)) aannggiiooggrraapphhyy and computed tomographic ((CCTT)) aannggiiooggrraapphhyy of the thoracic inlet, especially with recently devised techniques and protocols, are noninvasive modalities that provide image quality comparable to that of angiography and venography.
  46. 46. • an Angiography andd vveennooggrraapphhyy remain the criterion standards for the radiologic diagnosis of these conditions, and they have the added benefit of enabling potential endovascular treatment. • MR neurography – newer technology to detect localized nerve function abnormality
  47. 47. • aTOS – Segmental arterial pressures – Angiography • vTOS – Duplex U/S – Venography • Consider bilateral studies
  48. 48. EMG/NCS • Reduction in NCV and low amplitude motor responses • Positive results – Confirms the clinical diagnosis – Poor prognosis if true neural damage present • Negative results – Does not exclude TOS Both EMG/NCV have lo sensistivity for TOS
  49. 49. Electrophysiology Testing • Medial antebrachial cutaneous nerve (MAC) – Lowest branch of inferior trunk of brachial plexus – More sensitive to compression than other branches • Higher sensitivity and specificity with EMG/NCS
  50. 50. Scalene muscle block • Most useful when diagnosis is unclear • Patient in supine position with neck hyperextended and turned to opposite side. Lateral border of sternocledomastoid is palpated andabout 1.5 inches above the clavicle anterior scalene muscle is palpated.
  51. 51. • 5- 7ml of plane bupivacaine and 1ml of betamethasone is injected. • Relief of symptoms ranging from few days to weeks. • Good relief of symptoms confirms the diagnosis. • 2-3 injections can be given.
  52. 52. Treatment Conservative management aims to increase the space in the thoracic outlet area and to relieve compression on the neurovascular structures. Step 1 proper postural changes and correct faulty postures. Step 2 manipulate and mobilize and relax 1st rib and clavicular, scapular, pectoral muscles. Step 3 strengthen the shoulder girdle muscles and stretch scalene muscles
  53. 53. Pain control • Muscle relaxants • NSAIDS • Ultrasonography with ionatophorosis • Transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation. (TENS) • Local anesthetic injections.
  54. 54. Edema control • Edema gloves • Compressive garments • Elevation of limb • Active range of motion exercises • Retrograde massages • Phonophoresis controls pain and edema
  55. 55. Ergonomics • Work posture related changes • Relative adjustment of chair height so that forearm rests comfortably and without shoulders being elevated or depressed. • Avoid carrying heavy weights on effected side • Avoid hyperextension of neck and hyperabducting postures
  56. 56. Exercises Involves relaxing shoulder girdle and stretching the scalene and pectoral muscles. Neck : neck side bending exercises neck rotation neck flexion exercises Shoulder : shrugging of shoulders pendulum exercises
  57. 57. Treatment nTOS • Neck stretching • Posture correction • Avoid neck traction, weights, resistance exercises, strengthening exercises
  58. 58. Surgical decompression Symptoms persists beyond 2 months of conservative management.  Associated vascular compression with poststenotic dialatation. Complete occlusion of a large vessel. Progression of neurological symptoms. Nerve conduction velocity < 60m/s
  59. 59. • 1st rib resection and scalenectomy are standard procedures for TOS • 1st rib resection is recommended for lower type TOS • Scalenectomy is recommended for upper type TOS • Best results and less chance of recurrence with combined 1st rib resection and scalenectomy.
  60. 60. Scalenectomy • Incision :8cms incision, 1.5cm above middle third of clavicle. • 80-90% of scalenus anterior muscle and 40-50% of scalenus medius muscle removed. Protect long thoracic nerve and phrenic nerve. Complications : neck hematoma, chylus drainge, dyspnea due to phrenic nerve irritation.
  61. 61. 1st rib resection 1. Transaxillary approach 2. Supraclavicular approach 3. Infraclavicular approach 4. Posterior approach.
  62. 62. Transaxillary approach ( Roos approach) • Transverse Incision at the level of third rib just below the axillary hair line. – Advantages • Limited field of operative dissection • Cosmetically placed incision • Achieve 1st rib resection and anterior scalenectomy • Removal of anomalous ligaments and fibrous bands. • Less blood loss, no muscles are divided.
  63. 63. – Disadvantages • Incomplete exposure of entire scalene triangle • Difficulty achieving brachial plexus neurolysis • Limited if vascular reconstruction is needed
  64. 64. • Supraclavicular approach – Advantages • Wide exposure of all anatomic structures • Permits complete resection of anterior and middle scalenes as well as brachial plexus neurolysis. • Allows resection of cervical ribs and anomalous 1st ribs • Vascular reconstruction is possible
  65. 65. Infraclavicular approach • ADVANTAGES • Ideal for venous and arterial obstruction. • Venous embolectomy. • Arterial reconstruction. • DISADVANTAGES • Poor view of thoracic outlet. • Poor excision of posterior part of the rib.
  66. 66. Posterior approach • Advantages • cervical rib can be easily resected. • Sympathetectomy can be done • Disadvantages • Vascular reconstruction can not be performed.
  67. 67. Thoracoscopic First Rib Resesction • Three 10mm portal are made -1st anterior 3rd ICS -2nd lateral 5th ICS - 3rd lateral wall of 6th ICS Endoscopic drill is used to dissesct the rib
  68. 68. Adjunctive procedures – Pectoralis minor tenotomy. – Sympathectomy :
  69. 69. Treatment vTOS • Anticoagulation therapy with heparin and oral anticoagulants. • Fibrinolytics • Catheter-directed thrombolysis. • Thrombosis is < 3days old : Thrombectomy • Chronic thrombosis : Venous Bypass
  70. 70. Complications • Nerve injury bracial plexus injury Long thoracic nerve of bell Phrenic nerve Intercostobrachial nerve. Vagus and Reccurent laryngeal nerve Vascular injury Subclavian vein and artery
  71. 71. • Thoracic duct injury Lymphatic fistula Lymphocele Chylothorax Pleural complication pleural damage Pneumotharax Pleural effusion
  72. 72. Recurrent nTOS • Postoperative scarring most common cause. • Recurrence usually is seen within 3months. • To minimize scar tissue formation patient is instructed to perform active range of motion exercises beginning the day after surgery. Performed every 3-4 hrs for atleast 6 months.
  73. 73. Initial procedure Recurrent procedure Adequate 1st rib resection scalenectomy More than 1cm of first rib stump. Removal of the stump Brachial plexus neurolysis Subclavian vessel vascolysis. Partial resection of 2nd rib scalenectomy 1st rib resection + Scalenectomy Brachial plexus neurolysis. Adequate coverage of plexus with prescelene fat. Partial 2nd rib resection.
  74. 74. Thank you.

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