North West pain Relief Center Editorial Staff, Author at Northwest Pain Relief Centers

Author Archives: North West pain Relief Center Editorial Staff

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Five Smart Low Back Pain Relief Ideas

Low back pain is a common problem for most people as they age. With age, a person’s bone and muscle structure loses elasticity and strength which makes it prone to injuries that cause low back pain. However, age is just one of the many probable causes of low back pain. Other reasons include inappropriate posture, excessive weight gain, stress, and degenerative diseases, among others. Treatment for low back pain can be a long procedure depending on the cause but there are several ways a person can get low back pain relief easily and safely. Below are some ideas to relieve low back pain:

  1. Use heating pads to relax back muscles and the spine.

Applying heat therapy for 20-30 minutes on the lower back can soothe pain caused by muscle spasms and fatigue. A regular heating pad applied with a gentle massage on the lower back can provide instant low back pain relief. If no heating pads are available, soaking in a hot bath can also do wonders for low back pain.

  1. Take non-prescription painkillers.

Over-the-counter painkillers can reduce joint pain and swelling. Some of the most popular painkillers for back pain include naproxen, ibuprofen, aspirin, and ketoprofen. However, even if these painkillers are available without prescription, it is advisable to consult a doctor about over-the-counter drugs one can take in case of low back pain.

  1. Practice appropriate posture for specific activities.

Inappropriate posture can put undue strain on your lower back which can cause injuries over time. When standing, keep your hips, shoulder, and ears in a straight line while pulling your stomach in. This position ensures that your weight is evenly distributed so as not to burden your back muscles. If you sit for long hours, using a chair with good back support is essential to maintaining proper posture. It is important to keep your hips a little lower than your knees by propping your feet on a low stool or adjusting the chair’s height.

  1. Rest to soothe back pain.

When one experiences low back pain, it is important to rest. The best way to do this is to lie on the floor with pillows under the knees. This works by easing the weight and pressure off one’s back.  While this works as a temporary relief for low back pain, resting this way for a couple of days can help a person recuperate from a hurt or strained back.

  1. Stretch back muscles regularly.

Muscle elasticity and bone flexibility are greatly reduced as one ages or suffers from injuries. As such, even minor activities can trigger low back pain.  Although stretching before performing strenuous activities like sports or lifting heavy objects is already standard, it is also important to take regular stretching breaks during everyday activities like driving and sitting to ease the stress from one’s back.

Back pain need not be such a burden if one knows simple and safe techniques to soothe it. But if the pain in one’s back is chronic or prolonged, the best way to deal with it is to consult a doctor for treatment and medication.

Our center offers an innovative treatment which has been very successful with hundreds of patients. Ask our doctors about our Back-Pain Program.


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Health Benefits of Foot Massage

Massage of any kind is relaxing and promotes a feeling of calmness. To many health practitioners, in fact, foot massage has been known to be good for health and well-being. Foot massage is common throughout the east as a healing method. In the east, foot massage is not only practiced on adults but on children as well.

Foot massage or reflexology works in the same manner as acupuncture. Each area of the foot corresponds with another area of the body and by massaging each part of the foot, you may be working on your liver, kidney, colon, stomach, etc. Thus, if you experience constipation, a massage through your feet can help in your bowel movement problems.

Health benefits are not entirely proven, but many claim they work. It is said that reflexology can get rid of toxins, help your circulation, improve body functions and even improve memory. A professional foot reflexologist can even diagnose the health problems that you are facing just by massaging your feet.

Foot massage can be really painful. This is especially if more pressure is applied. Screams of pain from a patient in a foot massage center is not uncommon. However, this should not deter you, if you are considering a foot massage. Just explain to the foot reflexologist about your low tolerance for pain and ask him to adjust the pressure applied.

If nothing else, a foot massage will help melt away the day’s stress. Your feet take the biggest beating throughout the day. They have to get you where you need to go and hold up your entire body weight. People tend to overlook their feet. However, hurting feet may just render a person immobile.

With many new age ideas filtering to the west, foot massage has also become more popular in areas like the United States. It is a natural way of treatment after a long hard day. The health benefits may be disputed but it never hurts to try it out and see what benefits it may hold for you.

Our center offers an innovative treatment which has been very successful with hundreds of patients. Ask our doctors about our Massage Therapy Program.


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Migraine Headaches- What Are They?

The possibility of a migraine headache can easily become the worst fear of anyone who has ever suffered from one. These debilitating headaches are believed to be caused by changes in the levels of serotonin in the brain. When the levels are too low, this causes the blood vessels to swell, and this swelling causes quite a bit of pain. The level of serotonin that your brain produces is determined by many different things, including foods, light, estrogen, and blood sugar levels.

Those who suffer from migraine headaches know that the pain can become incredibly intense, literally preventing them from going about their day-to-day lives. Different people experience different levels of pain with their migraines – no two are alike.

Symptoms of a migraine headache may include nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, spotty vision, sensitivity to light, sound and smells, intense throbbing pain in various places on your head, feelings of exhaustion, confusion, being too hot or too cold, having a stiff neck and shoulders, dizziness, or feeling light headed.

Many people also report that movement or being touched increases the pain dramatically. Some people suffer from migraines so often that they know when one is about to start – well before it starts. They may experience fatigue, have mood swings, crave certain foods, or they may even experience increased energy that is not ‘normal’ for them.

There are different types of migraine headaches. Classic Migraines are described as migraines that are signaled by changes in the way one sees. Feelings of depression, irritability, and restlessness may signal these migraines. Common Migraines usually start slowly and lasting much longer than Classic Migraines. Classic Migraines and Common Migraines are the two most common types of migraine headaches.

Migraines can be caused by a variety of things, such as excess light, which causes the brain to produce more serotonin than is needed. Certain foods can cause migraines, and this varies from person to person. Unbalanced estrogen levels are another major cause, and more women than men have migraine headaches. Migraine headaches may last anywhere from a few hours up to three days or more.

For some people, over the counter pain relievers will help ease the pain of a migraine. For others, stronger prescriptions pain reliever is required. Again, treatment should be started at the first sign of a migraine in order to cure it faster. Some prescription medications used to treat severe migraine headaches can be habit forming, so caution should be used.

Other than medication, if you are suffering from a migraine, you should resign to a dark room that is very quiet and lie down. If touch doesn’t bother you, massaging your temples may help. Make sure that you apply pressure to the temples, and you should keep your eyes closed and place a cool damp cloth or cold compress either over your eyes or on your head – or both.

Migraines can be avoided in a variety of ways. For frequent headaches, medication may be prescribed to help avoid migraines. Wearing sunglasses, especially those designed for headache sufferers should also be used in bright light.. If certain foods tend to bring on your migraines, those foods should of course be avoided. You should also make sure that you get plenty of sleep and that you avoid stress.

Again, migraine headaches can be quite debilitating. Prevention of these headaches is important, and anyone who has had one of these types of headaches will do everything they can do to prevent another one from coming on. Prevention, however, doesn’t always work, so again, make sure you start treating your migraine headache at the very first sign that one is coming for faster relief.

Our center offers an innovative treatment which has been very successful with hundreds of patients. Ask our doctors about our Headache and Migraine Program.


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Crash Hits: Common Injuries In Car Accidents

Cars are the most visible signs of modernity in an otherwise ancient world. No urban environment would be complete without these four-wheeled machines. Most people see them as a convenience, enabling them to get from point A to point B without having to endure the crowds the rush hours associated with public transportation. However, as cars become more and more available, roads become more and more congested. As the congestion worsens, it is inevitable that car accidents occur and people get hurt. Statistically speaking, car accidents have been occurring with increased frequency over the past decade. The statistics also show that there are a number of injuries that have become common to most car accidents during that period.

 

Head and neck injuries are listed as being typical to a car accident. The face, in particular, can suffer laceration and cutting from shattered glass or shrapnel generated by the impact. Dental injuries are also possible, particularly for people in the driver’s seat or were close to the point of impact. Mental health problems and head trauma are also possibilities. Concussions are not uncommon among car accident-related injuries. Some people also tend to experience anxiety for some time after the accident, though this is much rarer than physical injuries. The most common mental health concerns related to a car accident would be helping the victims overcome the stress of being involved in the accident, as well as the chance of post-traumatic stress disorder.

 

The body, however, is much more likely to bear the brunt of the damage caused by a car accident. Injuries to the abdomen and legs can result in chronic pain for prolonged periods after an accident. In some cases, accident survivors have had to endure lower back pain for years since their bodies never fully recovered from the damage. Knee pain and damage to leg muscles like the quadriceps can also occur for those who are involved in relatively minor accidents or were not at the point of impact. Areas that have been cut or injured during the accident may also develop an infection, depending on how quickly the wound or opening was addressed by medical teams.

 

Broken bones and torn muscles are common among car accident victims, though the likely areas to be affected vary depending on the specifics of the accident. Simple and compound fractures can both be experienced, typically requiring extensive time to repair and recover. In a number of cases, surgery may be needed to undo some of the damage done. Most often, drivers will experience trauma and damage to the legs and possibly the torso. Some injuries may not be obvious at first and can only be treated after the victim has been given a full examination. Removal of some of the shrapnel from impact may also require surgery if it enters too deeply into the body.

 

There are some psychological disorders that can come about from being involved in a car accident. The most common to be cited is post-traumatic stress disorder, though it is not the only one. Anxiety is also a possible effect of being in a car accident, though it is not considered to be a common occurrence.


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Back Pain and Blue Collar Jobs

Low back pain is one of the oldest occupational health problems in history and one of the most common causes of work-related complaints among adults.  Approximately 15 million people visit the doctors each year because of lower back pain.  It is estimated that a total of $25 billion is spent every year to treat this form of body ache.   For this reason, the back-pain relief and muscle relaxant industries are growing by leaps and bounds.

Low back pain is a muscular and skeletal ailment that afflicts millions of people around the world.  People with blue-collar jobs or those who are required to do heavy manual work are more prone to lumbar aches.  No wonder, construction workers are often diagnosed with low back pain.  If left untreated, this ailment can result to absenteeism and decreased productivity. Worse, it could even be the cause of more serious health problems.

To determine the severity of low back pain, you may use the following parameters to see how “bad” your back is:

  • Acute Low back pain last less than 6 weeks
  • Sub-Acute Low back pain between 6 and 12 weeks
  • Chronic Low back pain persists for more than 12 weeks

The good news is that there are a variety of treatments for back pain.  One of the easiest ways to ease the aches is to use a muscle relaxant.  Back pain relief is as easy as popping a pill.  However, it is important to get your doctor’s advice since medications for back pain are often doctor-prescribed and cannot be bought over the counter.

These are other helpful tips, procedures and strategies on back pain relief that you may want to consider:

  • Apply a cold pack to the painful area for 5-10 minutes at time
  • Use an heating pad on the painful area if the pain is still there within a few days
  • Protect your back. Avoid sudden turning or bending. Go on with your usual activities and try to
  • avoid bed rest
  • Get expert professional treatments
  • Nonprescription Pain Medications
  • Spinal Manipulation by a Chiropractor
  • Get a massage
  • Try acupuncture
  • Traction treatments
  • Biofeedback
  • Back Belts and Corsets
  • Injections into the back

Certainly, back pain relief goes beyond office furniture and medication.  The cause of back pain can also be stress at work, family problems, and other distressing situations that may not necessarily due to work or physical exertion.  The build-up of everyday stress can make your muscles tighten up and contribute to the slow but painful tension of the back or lumbar muscles.  Self-hypnosis, meditation and guided imagery are also being promoted as tools or techniques to reduce the discomforts association with lumbar ailments.  Back pain relief options can be expensive, depending on the specific technique prescribed by the therapist.

But surely, regardless of the severity or degree of back pain, it is always best to consult a doctor or healthcare professional.  The back pain may be a symptom of other illnesses or health problems.


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Migraine Headaches Be Gone

Twenty-Four million people in the United States alone suffer from migraines.  A migraine is typically a throbbing or pulsing headache, often focused on one-side of the head, and associated with nausea, sensitivity to light and sound, as well as certain smells.  Attacks are typically recurring, and can be less severe as the migraine sufferer ages.

Migraines can occur at any age, but typically begin between the ages of 10 and 40.  While some people experience several migraines a month, a select few only have a few migraines throughout their lifetime.  Nearly 75% of migraine sufferers are women.  Though migraines can happen at any time, some women experience migraines just prior to or during menstruation.  These migraines, called menstrual migraines, are related to hormonal changes and often do not occur during pregnancy.  Meanwhile, some women only develop migraines for the first time during pregnancy, or even after menopause.

The actual cause of a migraine is unknown.  It is believed, however, that the condition results from a series of reactions in the central nervous system, usually caused by changes in the body or in the environment.  Migraines often appear to be inherited, as there is often a family history of the condition.  These migraine sufferers may inherit the sensitivity to triggers that produce inflammation in blood vessels and nerves around the brain, which cause pain.

The signs and symptoms of migraine pain are often intense and severe, described by throbbing or pulsating pain that only gets intensified by routine physical activity, coughing, straining, or even moving the head.  These headaches can often get so severe that they interfere with the day-to-day activity of a person.  Sleeping migraine sufferers can be awakened by the attack, which can also cause a numbing sensation in hands and lips, as well as interfere with eyesight and vision for the duration of the attack.  Migraines can be so debilitating – causing sufferers to feel tired and weak even long after the migraine has passed.

Migraines typically begin in a specific area, usually on one side of the head, and can spread and build in intensity over a course of a few hours, then gradually subside.  They can last an entire day, or in some extremely severe cases, several days.

The problem with migraine symptoms is that they are as varied as the individual sufferer.  The strange sensations, such as tingling or the feeling of numbness, are known as auras, and can start anywhere from ten to thirty minutes before the migraine pain actually sets in.

Migraine treatment is possible.  Knowing what triggers your migraines and avoiding them is one of the best ways to avoid a migraine.  Treating acute attacks as they appear is crucial.

Our center offers an innovative treatment which has been very successful with hundreds of patients. Ask our doctors about our Headache and Migraine Program.


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Eliminating Stress with Massage Therapy

We have officially accepted stress as an everyday, unavoidable black cloud that follows us wherever we go.  It’s in the car.  It’s in the office.  It’s at home.  Stress is waiting around every corner with its sharp edges ready to chip away at our most complete selves.  Stress heightens our blood pressure, making us irritable and tired.  It causes our bodies to lock up and feel limited in the activities we used to be able to do.  Whether we realize it or not, stress is a significant ingredient in what weighs us down.

It is a difficult concept to realize in one’s self.  We get lost in the day to day hustle and bustle; each new day elicits tasks and responsibilities.  We forget to take a moment to consider how we feel both physically and emotionally.  “But I have to take the car to the shop……”

Let me empower you with the idea of massage therapy.  My job, my passion in life is to help people feel good; to encourage each individual to gain control of their own well-being arm them with a protective shield against stress.  No phones, no traffic, no kids; a calm and soothing environment for you to let go and tune in.  To work the knots out, to replace the dull ache with vibrant mobility.  To bring you back to a place when you felt strong and energetic.

It’s seemingly too simple a solution.  How can a massage combat the negative effects of stressful situations that face us when we wake up every day?  The answer is that massage is part of the solution, and restitution happens a little in small steps.  “But I just don’t have the time…”

Saying you don’t have the time is just like saying yes to sore neck and shoulder muscles.  Saying you don’t have the time allows stress to work it’s dark magic and slowly suck the metaphorical breath right out of you.  Enough of the bad stuff; let’s talk benefits.

Massage improves circulation of blood and lymphatic fluid. Healthy, hearty oxygenated blood to limbs and muscles make the body happy!  Massage is an excellent complement to exercise and stretching, which also promote fluid movement.  Massage eases tense muscles.  Have you ever had that pain in the neck and shoulders that keeps you from looking over your shoulder?  The pain that intensifies after long days and commutes? Massage can really help that.  Better yet, massage can keep it from coming back; it’s just a tight muscle.

EASE TENSE MUSCLES+INCREASED CIRCULATION=A VERY HAPPY NECK

Massage increases immune system functions.  Healthy, non-restricted blood carries antibodies to all parts of your body, and contains cells that devour the metabolic wastes.  Keep it clean and flowing!  Keep your energy levels up.  “Go ahead cold, make my day…”

Massage improves joint flexibility.  Tight muscles anchor joints down.  Lighten the load; decrease the tension and you’ll be doing the backstroke all the way home.

Massage promotes the feeling of wholeness.  Do you ever feel disconnected from the waist down?  Do you feel like your hands and feet are numb and restricted in movement?  A full body massage works closely with your energy levels, bringing back into focus that you are a complete individual from head to toe.  Get grounded!

And that’s just to name a few.  Never mind massage facilitates recovery from injury, relieves anxiety, calms the mind, brings to light self-awareness, and overall feels really good…

No more excuses.  A reason to avoid your well-being and simply endure the negative effects of stress does not exist.  Get a massage.  For your body, mind and spirit.


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How Stress Affects Your Health

In our high-powered world of technology, we find our lives going at such a rapid pace that things seem to be spinning out of control. This and normal everyday problems with family and money contribute to a buildup of stress. This is one of the main reasons that we do not enjoy the good health we deserve.

Sometimes we are not even aware of the problem until a crisis occurs in our lives, by that time considerable damage can have occurred and it is difficult to turn our lives around onto the right path.

Signs of stress: Your body has ways of showing stress and it is important to be aware of them:

 

  • First you may be experiencing tension in your muscles, especially your neck and back

 

  • Fidgeting, you need to hold something with your hands (cigarettes, twirling pencils etc.)

 

  • You just have difficulty in relaxing

 

  • Depression.

 

We have all experienced aches and pains and are not sure why. This is often one of the first signs of stress affecting your body. Fidgeting and restlessness are very common in people with tension and stress. Depression is a common disorder that if left unchecked can lead to serious mental illness. It is very important to catch these initial symptoms of stress as early as possible, before they develop into more serious problems.

Your body’s reaction to stress:

  • High blood pressure

 

  • Lack of concentration

 

  • Irregular breathing

 

  • Strain on your heart

All these reactions to stress can turn into life threatening problems. High blood pressure is a well-known precursor of more serious problems like strokes and aneurisms. Lack of concentration can cause problems while driving or operating industrial machinery. Irregular breathing can develop into Asthma. Any strain on your heart is bad and can lead to serious consequences and even death.

Here are some pointers to cut down stress:

  • Organize your time

 

  • Spend some time away from all your worries and cares-find time to relax

 

  • Stop worrying- it will not help you solve the problem

 

  • Be aware that you have stress problems

 

  • Try to eat well and sleep well

 

  • Try to train yourself to be positive

When you organize your time, you will find it easier to get things done. Prioritize your tasks and do them one at a time. You will get them done more quickly and easily this way. Take some time out for yourself and try to relax. Try some meditation –this is a good stress reliever. Do something that you like to do. Once you are aware that you are stressing out you can find out the main factors that are causing it and try to solve or alleviate the problems. Look after yourself and try to eat well, sleep well and above all be positive

Some nutritional supplements can help your stressed-out body heal itself. Supplements that supply your body with essential Glyconutrients can help when you are stressed. Why? Because glyconutrients become depleted when your body gets stressed out. When you have less of these vital nutrients your immune system becomes weakened and you are more susceptible to infections and diseases. Taking glyconutrients can help your body reverse these damaging effects caused by stress and enable you to live a healthier happier life.


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Herniated Discs and Back Pain

The disk at the back-spinal column divides the skeletal structures. Disk does not compose blood vessels or nerves like other elements of the skeletal structure. Instead, disks are made up of fat, water, and tissues that connect to the skeletal structure. During all hours of the day, the disks leak water, which is caused from forces of gravity. For instance, when we sit it is a gravity force in action, which one might think that it takes little effort to sit, but contrary to the notion, it is adding a lot of weight to the spine and disk.

The disk restores water that has leaked out during the day, yet the water is restored at slower paces. Fat and water is balanced in the disk, yet when it is not it causes a person to shrink height. Fat and water inside disks are thick, yet when a person starts aging, the substances begin to thin. When fat and water begins to thin, it can lead to osteoarthritis. Thinning water and fat of the disk is also the leading cause of back pain, especially at the lower region.

Disks exterior are covered by “Annulus Fibrosis.” Sometimes the connective tissues lead to abnormal thickening, which scars the tissue. Usually injury follows, then infection, and moves to restrained oxygen intake. Surgery is often the result. The inner area of the disk is shielded by “Nucleus Pulposus.” The pulp makes up the hub of the disk, which is polished and soft. The disks make up the primary supporting force that regulates the spinal column, bones, muscles, etc.

When the disk is not protecting the spinal structures, it is often dehydrated, pressured, or deformed. The disk has strength that combines with flexibility to withstand high loads of pressure, yet when that flexibility and strength is interrupted, it can result to herniated disk slips, or other injuries.

Slipped disks in medical terms are known as HNP. (Herniated Nucleus Pulposus) As outlined the intervertebral disks are ruptured, which interrupts the nucleus pulposus. In medical terms, slipped disks can include L4, L5, which is Lumbosacral and C5-7, which is Cervical. L4 is a single area of the spinal column and disks, which defines the numerical disk ruptured.

Slipped disks are caused from accidents, trauma, strain of the back and neck, lifting heavy objects, disk degeneration, weak ligaments, and congenital deformity of the bones. Disk degeneration is outlined in this article.

Symptoms:

Lumbosacral will show apparent symptoms, such as acute lower back pain, which radiates to the buttocks and down to the leg. The person will feel weak, numb, or tingling that stretches to the leg and foot. Ambulation also causes pain.

If cervical disk problems are present, the patient will feel stiffness around the neck. As well, the symptoms will make the patient feel weak, numb, and he/she will feel tingling around the hands. Neck pain often generates pain, extending it to the arms and onto the hands, which cause weakness to the upper region of the body. The weakness often targets the triceps and biceps, which become atrophy. The lumbar is affected also, which the patient will find it difficult to straighten the back.

What happens when a disk is slipped and/or broken the annulus fibrosis reacts by pushing its substance into the hollow spacing between the spinal column. The spinal column is made up of nerves, which travel to various parts of the body, including the brain. These nerves are affected when the disk is slipped. Learn more about the Central Nerve System (CNS) to relate to slipped disks. First, understand how the joints and connective tissues can cause back pain.


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Facts vs Myths About Back Pain

Let’s begin by learning some facts to separate truth from myth with regards to back pain. First, under one percent of acute lower back pain is the result of a serious infection or condition like cancer or a spinal injury. For those under 50, the rate is even lower. Back pain is the number one disability for those under age 45. And it runs second, after the common cold, as the top reason for visiting a healthcare provider in the United States.

“There is nothing really wrong with you.” Myth! Chronic pain sufferers report that doctors generally tell this to about 90 percent of them and it is incorrect. In reality, most low back pain cases or some 90 percent generally come from an unknown cause, like an infection or a particular injury. And the duration of the pain runs generally from four to six weeks. “People don’t die from chronic back pain.” Wrong! The pain combined with depression and anxiety in long-term cases places sufferers at risk for suicide, which does happen from time to time.

“Most back pain requires surgery.” Myth! On the contrary, under two percent of patients with back pain need surgery. However, back pain is the third top reason for surgery. “Only a small percentage of workers suffer back pain on the job.” Wrong! The top occupational hazard in the USA is back pain.

“Lie down and rest for back pain.” Au contraire. Contrary to popular believe, bed rest can hinder recovery. Health care providers recommend remaining active to decrease down time for patients.

“Men suffer back pain more than women.” Not! With regards to gender issues and back pain, it is a myth that men suffer back pain more than women. In reality, the only main difference is with secondary pain to disk disorders during middle age. However, with regards to race, low back pain is reported more frequently among Caucasians than other races including African Americans. “If a patient’s pain description lacks a regular, consistent pattern, it’s probably imagined or exaggerated.” Myth! No two people, no two cases are totally 100 percent identical. Activities, events, pain and people themselves vary from day to day and there is no 100 percent correct way to describe pain in words to fit a perfectly accurate diagnosis.


 
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