Topic: TE TROUBLE

Forum: Breast Reconstruction — Talk with others facing decisions about whether or not to have breast reconstruction, and if so, what type and when.

Posted on: Jul 16, 2011 11:00AM - edited Feb 5, 2020 01:58PM by Rennasus

Posted on: Jul 16, 2011 11:00AM - edited Feb 5, 2020 01:58PM by Rennasus

Rennasus wrote:

I've been inducted into yet another "club" — the TE TROUBLE CLUB — and wanted to start a thread specifically for all of us out there dealing with tissue expander problems. There are many of us out there who develop complications with our tissue expanders, including (but not limited to) the following: necrosis; infection; cellulitis; swelling; lymphedema; redness; rash; rejection; delayed healing; pin holes; sebum leakage; expander leakage ... oh, the list goes on! There are many compassionate women on this thread who have dealt with all of this — and more. (Just look at the surgery list below!) Whatever your troubles with your tissue expander(s), we'd love to hear from you. Ladies who had TE Trouble and are on the other side of reconstruction are also encouraged to share your stories ... it helps everyone to know we will get there one day! UPDATE: As I write this (FEB 2020), it's been 9 years since I started this journey. Hard to believe! If I hadn't blogged about my experience, I would have forgotten most of the details of what I went through. So let that be hope for anyone going through this: As time goes by, you will forget. (Kinda like childbirth!) You can read my BC story here: https://thebigcandme.blogspot.com/2011/04/joining-cancer-club.html

*********** TE TROUBLE MEMBER SURGERIES IN 2011 ************

  • JULY 6, 2011: Rennasus: (right TE removed due to delayed incision healing)
  • AUG. 11, 2011: MondaysChild: (both TE's removed & replaced)
  • NOV. 4, 2011: Fluffqueen01: (exchange to squishies)
  • NOV. 10, 2011: MondaysChild: (exchange to squishies)
  • NOV. 11, 2011: MTnester (left TE removed, new one put in)
  • NOV. 14, 2011: Chickadee521 (exchange to squishies)
  • NOV. 30, 2011: Momof3infla (right TE put back in)
  • DEC. 1, 2011: Rennasus (right TE put back in after 5 months being out)
  • DEC. 20, 2011: Tatina123 (right TE put back in)
  • DEC. 22, 2011: Katarina (exchange to squishies)
  • DEC. 23, 2011: JBennett38 (exchange to squishies)

*********** TE TROUBLE MEMBER SURGERIES IN 2012 ************

  • JAN. 6, 2012: Survivor11 (left TE put back in)
  • JAN. 6, 2012: Sundermom (TE put back in)
  • JAN. 7, 2012: Debbiey (right TE put back in)
  • JAN. 17, 2012: DM13 (TE removed due to necrosis)
  • JAN. 2012: Moonflwr912: (left TE removed due to infection)
  • JAN. 25, 2012: Krystalrose (right TE removed due to infection)
  • JAN. 27, 2012: Beebop (both TEs removed due to infection)
  • FEB. 2, 2012: MarcyK (left TE replaced)
  • FEB. 3, 2012: MRochon (Salpingo-oophorectomy)
  • FEB. 7, 2012: Mich_M (exchange to squishies)
  • FEB. 7, 2012: MTnester (exchange to squishies)
  • FEB. 9, 2012: Olgah34 (Left TE being exchanged due to leakage)
  • FEB. 14, 2012: DLL66: (adjustable saline implant put in)
  • FEB. 24, 2012: SpecialK (exchange to squishies)
  • FEB. 27, 2012: Chickadee521 (revision to lefty & fat grafting)
  • MAR. 1, 2012: MKW1 (left TE put back in)
  • MAR. 20, 2012: Evebarry (exchange to squishies)
  • MAR. 21, 2012: Olgah34 (Left TE removed due to infection)
  • MAR. 30, 2012: fluffqueen01 (nips, lipo, fat grafting)
  • APR. 17, 2012: DM13 (right TE put back in)
  • APR. 23, 2012: Psalms91 (right TE put back in; hysterectomy)
  • APR. 23, 2012: JBennett38 (tattoos)
  • APR. 24, 2012: Greenmonkey (both TE's replaced)
  • APR. 26, 2012: Sundermom (exchange to squishies & fat grafting)
  • MAY 8, 2012: Bonseye (Left TE exchanged to squishy; right TRAM)
  • MAY 12, 2012: Survivor11 (exchange to squishies)
  • MAY 15, 2012: 1Curlyfry (new TE being put back in)
  • MAY 16, 2012: Momof3infla (exchange to squishies)
  • MAY 23, 2012: Erika8 (implant and reduction)
  • MAY 23, 2012: GreenMonkey (left TE being replaced)
  • MAY 29, 2012: Tatina123 (exchange to squishies & fat grafting)
  • JUNE 4, 2012: MTnester (revision surgery: out with the silicone, in with the saline)
  • JUNE 5, 2012: 1Curlyfry (new TE taken out due to staph infection again)
  • JULY 2, 2012: Orange73 (right TE removed)
  • JULY 3, 2012: BCAvenger (complete revision surgery, including new TEs)
  • JULY 6, 2012: Roadwarrior28 (left TE removed)
  • JULY 9, 2012: Orange73 (left TE removed)
  • JULY 12, 2012: LisaMarie68 (exchange to squishies)
  • JULY 17, 2012: Chickadee521 (nips)
  • JULY 17, 2012: Binc (right TE removed due to infection)
  • JULY 19, 2012: GreenMonkey (exchange to squishies)
  • AUG. 7, 2012: DLL66 (exchanging saline for silcone)
  • AUG. 12, 2012: Survivor11 (nips)
  • AUG. 14, 2012: Moonflwr912 (left TE replaced)
  • AUG. 22, 2012: Blessings2011 (exchange to squishies)
  • AUG. 24, 2012: CMartin (exchange to squishies)
  • AUG. 27, 2012: jill47 (bilateral incision repair)
  • AUG. 30, 2012: Layla2525 (exchange to squishies)
  • AUG. 30, 2012: Katarina (right implant removed due to delayed healing)
  • SEPT. 4, 2012: Dunesleeper (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 5, 2012: Rennasus (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 5, 2012: ShaeG45 (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 6, 2012: Mkw1 (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 7, 2012: BCavenger (exchange to squishy on right side due to leaky TE)
  • SEPT. 10, 2012: Moonflwr912 (left TE removed due to infection)
  • SEPT. 10, 2012: GreenEyes57 (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 11, 2012: Rosetx (exchange to squishies)
  • SEPT. 21, 2012: FluffQueen01 (final fat grafting)
  • SEPT. 24, 2012: GreenMonkey (redoing implants with Alloderm)
  • OCT. 18, 2012: DigitalCowgirl (exchange to squishies)
  • OCT. 18, 2012: Tatina123 (tattoo consult with Vinnie)
  • OCT. 25, 2012: LynMichel (exchange to squishies)
  • NOV. 8, 2012: LynMichel (staph infection; implant removed)
  • NOV. 12, 2012: Survivor11 (tattoos)
  • NOV. 14, 2012: Redninrah (TE replaced in May, removed in Nov; delayed healing)
  • NOV. 27, 2012: akrazykat (both TEs removed due to infection)
  • DEC. 5, 2012: chrisrenee77 (exchange to squishies)
  • DEC. 6, 2012: Momof3infla (nips)
  • DEC. 6, 2012: Momof3infla (nips)
  • DEC. 7, 2012: Bonseye (tattoos)
  • DEC. 7, 2012: DLL66 (nips)
  • DEC. 7, 2012: LeeA (TE removed & replaced due to infection)
  • DEC. 12, 2012: tfee (exchange to squishies)
  • DEC. 13, 2012: GreenMonkey (fat grafting & tattoos)
  • DEC. 14, 2012: SpecialK (fat grafting)
  • DEC. 14, 2012: Chickadee52 (tattoos)

*********** TE TROUBLE MEMBER SURGERIES IN 2013 ************

  • JAN. 8, 2013: Binc (Right TE put back in)
  • JAN. 9, 2013: 1Curlyfry (TE put back in)
  • JAN. 11, 2013: RoadWarrior28 (left TE put back in)
  • JAN. 16, 2013: jill47 (exchange to squishies)
  • JAN. 22, 2013: Olgah34 (Left TE put back in with Latissimus Dorsi)
  • JAN. 30, 2013: DM13 (exchange to squishies)
  • FEB. 14, 2013: Beth1951 (exchange to squishies following TE infection)
  • APR 18, 2013: olgah34 (exchange to squishies)
  • MAY 1, 2013: 1Curlyfry (exchange to squishies)
  • MAY 24, 2013: SheChirple (DIEP!)
  • MAY 30, 2013: melmcbee (exchange to squishies)
  • JUN 5, 2013: patriciahurtado (TE removed)
  • JUN 6, 2013: not-me (exchange to squishies)
  • JUN 11, 2013: Kathymc (exchange to squishies)
  • JUN 14, 2013: psalms91 (exchange to squishies)
  • JUN 18, 2013: roadwarrior28 (exchange to squishies)
  • JUN 18, 2013: LeeA (both TEs replaced)
  • JUN 27, 2013: Mondayschild (right implant ruptured; both implants replaced)
  • JULY 8, 2013: Kathymc (right implant removed due to infection)
  • JULY 10, 2013: andrea623 (exchange to squishies)
  • JULY 24, 2013: SheaJ (exchange to squishies)
  • JULY 24, 2013: Lesley0417 (both TEs replaced due to infection)
  • AUG. 8, 2013: jnprsn (right TE removed due to seroma, fluid buildup at drain site & infection)
  • Aug 14, 2013: Momof3infla: (left side revision)
  • Aug 14, 2013: Moonflwr912: (left TE being put back in after being out a year due to infection)
  • Sept 4, 2013: Moonflwr912 (surgery to replace drain)
  • Sept 4, 2013: Michele2013 (exchange to squishies; had TE placed after radiation was completed)
  • Sept 4, 2013: Lesley0417 (back in hospital due to another infection)
  • Sept 5, 2013 Lucky777 (exchange, bilateral breast lifts and extensive pocket work)
  • Sept 10, 2013: Hotpinkmess (Cipro for pseudomonas; Lat Flap w/TE)
  • Sept 25, 2013: Mamasixtaz: (exchange to squishies)
  • Oct 18, 2013: Binc: (exchange to squishies following infection, TE removal and replacement)
  • Oct 25, 2013: purple87 (surgery to close wound after TE placement)
  • Nov 5, 2013: togetherness (exchange to squishes following cellulitis infection and fluid buildup)
  • Dec 3, 2013: goldie4040 (exchange to squishes after debridement and wound reclosure)
  • Dec 6, 2013: sandra4611 (exchange to squishes after infection)
  • Dec 6, 2013: Babs6287 (left TE removed due to rash/infection)
  • Dec 16, 2013: denise4603 (right TE removed due to excess fluid/infection)
  • Dec 18, 2013: Moonflwr912 (exchange to squishes after 2 yrs, multiple TEs and infection)
  • Dec 19, 2013: tangandchris (left TE removed due to necrosis & infection)
  • Dec 20, 2013: togetherness (implant removed due to fluid buildup, debrided and replaced)
  • Dec 31, 2013: Bobogirl (left TE removed due to infection)

*********** TE TROUBLE MEMBER SURGERIES IN 2014 ************

  • May 23, 2014: Galsal (implant being replaced due to car accident)
  • Jan 2, 2014: Purple87 (bilateral latimus dorsi flap after delayed healing following TE placement)
  • Jan 10, 2014: denise4603 (left TE removed due to excess fluid/infection)
  • Jan 14, 2013: togetherness (both implants removed due to rejection)
  • Jan 19, 2014: sherriR6379 (left TE removed due to excess fluid leakage)
  • Jan 22, 2014: denise4603 (received wound vac due to open wound healing)
  • Jan 27, 2014: tangandchris (both TEs removed due to infection)
  • Jan 31, 2014: Babs6287 (fat grafting on left side after TE removal in Dec 2013 due to rash/infection)
  • Feb 7, 2014: Purple87 (latimus dorsi flap incision infection; surgery to repair)
  • Feb 11, 2014: SchoolCounselor (left TE removed due to infection)
  • Mar 4, 2014: Naiviv (left TE removed due to infection)
  • Mar 5, 2014: Bobogirl (right TE removed due to infection)
  • Mar 7, 2014: SpecialK (revision: replacing dermal matrix bilaterally)
  • Mar 15, 2014: Purple87 (right TE removed due to fistula and delayed healing after LAT Flap)
  • Mar 19, 2014: jnprsn (TE replaced after removal following infection)
  • Mar 19, 2014: AnnieeC (TE re-do due to capsular contracture)
  • Mar 21, 2014: Lakegirl1 (hospitalized for staph infection; TE replaced; developed hives from hibiclens)
  • Apr 4, 2014: SpecialK (implant removed due to infection and healing issues; smaller implant placed)
  • Apr 9, 2014: SpecialK (implant removed)
  • Apr 16, 2014: theBCavenger (formerly DM13) (revision surgery: fat grafting and Alloderm)
  • Apr 21, 2014: Lissab (TE removed due to infection and excessive fluid output)
  • Apr 25, 2014: NJmomof3 (left TE removed, new one placed due to staph infection)
  • Mar 19, 2014: Purple87 (right TE put back in)
  • May 22, 2014: Babs6287 (fat grafting)
  • June 24, 2014: Galsal (left TE replaced; damaged in car accident)
  • June 25, 2014: SharonS (TE replaced...3rd time's the charm!)

***********************

  • Diagnosis: 12/8/2010, IDC, 3cm, Stage 2A, Grade 1, 0/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- History: BMX & TE 2/3/11; ONCOTYPE SCORE: 16. Three incision revisions (2/19/11, 3/28/11, 4/26/11); right TE removed (delayed healing) 7/6/11; right TE replaced 12/1/2011; exchange 9/5/12. Took Tamoxifen Mar 2011-Sep 2013; took Letrazole (Femara) Nov 2013-Apr 2016. In Feb 2016 I took the Breast Cancer Index (BCI) test which came back that I had a LOW risk of late recurrence between years 5-10 (my score: 1.8% risk) and a LOW likelihood of benefit from extended endocrine therapy. That's why I stopped hormonal treatment at the 5-year mark (April 2016). Photos of my healing issues are on my blog (thebigcandme.blogspot.com); search for "DELAYED HEALING" and "GIVING UP THE GHOST" posts. To read my BC journey from the beginning, start with my oldest blog post "Cancer Club" thebigcandme.blogspot.com/2011... then work your way backwards. :-)
BMX & TE 2/3/11; incision revisions 2/19/11, 3/28/11, 4/26/11; right TE removed 7/6/11; put back 12/1/11; exchange 9/5/12. Tamoxifen 3/2011-9/2013; Femara 11/2013-4/2016. BCI test 2/2016. Blogging at: thebigcandme.blogspot.com/ Dx 12/8/2010, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/3/2011 Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 2/3/2011 Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary Surgery 2/19/2011 Reconstruction (right) Hormonal Therapy 3/24/2011 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery 3/28/2011 Reconstruction (right) Surgery 4/26/2011 Reconstruction (right) Surgery 7/6/2011 Reconstruction (right) Surgery 12/1/2011 Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 9/5/2012 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Hormonal Therapy 11/1/2013 Femara (letrozole)
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Jul 26, 2011 07:29PM specialk wrote:

Mich_M - Sounds exactly like what I had and in the same place.  OMG I could not believe how much it hurt, some of the worst pain I have ever felt.  I don't know how you handled it for 3 weeks.  Mine was constant if I was upright.  Now I just have normal surgical pain at the incision site.  I hope the other pain doesn't come back when I fill.

vhshea - the reason I asked about yogurt specifically was because of probiotics in it.  It has been suggested to me when on antibiotics to help balance the negative effect in the gut.  I too have antibiotic problems - my MO said if they couldn't treat a UTI I got after tx#2 they would have to refer me to an infectious disease specialist to find an appropriate med!  I didn't know I was allergic to Levaquin until my BMX - found out the hard way.  They had to pull my drains early and put me on Prednisone - they hate to do that a week out of surgery because it inhibits healing.  Gee, do you think that may have caused some of my problems....  PS was against it, it was prescribed by BS.  I am allergic to several other antibiotics as well so it is problematic.

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 16 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 2013-2018. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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Jul 26, 2011 07:35PM Lifeafter wrote:

SpecialK, if I can suggest a probiotic I would take it in pill form that way you are getting it directly and not with a whole bunch of sugars and hidden sugars in sugar free foods.  Human grade is what you should be looking for.  I have taken Florasmart and Inuflora.  Florasmart is in a pill form and is easier to take than Inuflora which is a grainy powder you can mix in a little bit of water to shoot down.  Probiotics can help regulate your digestive tract and rid your body of bad bacteria that causes bloating.  I've been taking them for two years and they really help.

5/5/11 lumpectomy - 5/13/11 PMX - 6/20/11 BMX w/immediate recon 7/27/11 RT TE removed - 10/28/11 RT TE replaced - 2/3/12 oopherectomy/salpingectomy - 7/3/12 major revision, LFT implant - 9/7/12 RT Implant Dx 5/12/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Jul 26, 2011 07:53PM specialk wrote:

mrochon - Thanks!  Excellent info!

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 16 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 2013-2018. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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Jul 26, 2011 08:07PM Lifeafter wrote:

You are welcome! :)

5/5/11 lumpectomy - 5/13/11 PMX - 6/20/11 BMX w/immediate recon 7/27/11 RT TE removed - 10/28/11 RT TE replaced - 2/3/12 oopherectomy/salpingectomy - 7/3/12 major revision, LFT implant - 9/7/12 RT Implant Dx 5/12/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Jul 26, 2011 10:36PM specialk wrote:

mrochon - I just noticed you are from Sacramento.  I lived there a long time ago and my best friend still is there.  I love it there (I am a Cali native) and hope to visit before the end of the year. How is your expander doing today?

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 16 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 2013-2018. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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Jul 27, 2011 12:15AM Lifeafter wrote:

Hi SpecialK, where abouts did you live and where is your best friend?  I'm just outside of downtown in Land Park by the zoo.  I've lived here just about all my life.

My dr appt is in 12 hours.  I hope its ok, we'll see.  I don't feel to good with what looks like pus developing under the skin. :(

Michelle

5/5/11 lumpectomy - 5/13/11 PMX - 6/20/11 BMX w/immediate recon 7/27/11 RT TE removed - 10/28/11 RT TE replaced - 2/3/12 oopherectomy/salpingectomy - 7/3/12 major revision, LFT implant - 9/7/12 RT Implant Dx 5/12/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Jul 27, 2011 07:56AM specialk wrote:

mrochon - hopefully it is just bruising, that can also look yellow.  I lived in Citrus Heights and then moved to Carmichael.  I met my husband there - we lived in the same apartment building.  My friend lives in the residential area just across the street from Sac State, River Park.  She lives in a little bungalow.  I love Land Park - beautiful houses.  Her old boss lived there and we went to an open house party a few years ago.  I always enjoyed Sacramento and would move back in a heartbeat.  Such a great location between Tahoe, SF, Monterey and Carmel. My husband just retired from the military about 18 months ago but we are stuck in FL because we bought a house when prices were high and now can't sell it - so we will be staying for a while!  That is OK though, I can be happy anywhere and the house is beautiful. 

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 16 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 2013-2018. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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Jul 27, 2011 11:16AM Lifeafter wrote:

I lived in Citrus Heights until 7th grade! I went to Grand Oaks Elementary and Sylvan Junior High! Small world. My plastic surgeon is just a couple blocks from River Park on J Street. Land Park is beautiful. I love it here and my neighbors are great. Sorry to hear about your home but you seem ok with it which is great. I had a gf who just wanted to ride the home foreclosure wave because she paid too much. She loved her house, didn't want to move, could afford her mortgage but just didn't want to pay anymore. That's wrong.

I'm off to shower and head to the dr to get checked out!

Michelle

5/5/11 lumpectomy - 5/13/11 PMX - 6/20/11 BMX w/immediate recon 7/27/11 RT TE removed - 10/28/11 RT TE replaced - 2/3/12 oopherectomy/salpingectomy - 7/3/12 major revision, LFT implant - 9/7/12 RT Implant Dx 5/12/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Jul 27, 2011 11:30AM specialk wrote:

mrochon - hope all is ok - let us know!

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 16 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 2013-2018. Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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Jul 27, 2011 02:29PM Lifeafter wrote:

I'm going back in for surgery this afternoon.  Bad infection.  My tissue expander on the right side will be removed and they will clean out my chest.  Another surgery.  Another iv.  F me.

Michelle :(

5/5/11 lumpectomy - 5/13/11 PMX - 6/20/11 BMX w/immediate recon 7/27/11 RT TE removed - 10/28/11 RT TE replaced - 2/3/12 oopherectomy/salpingectomy - 7/3/12 major revision, LFT implant - 9/7/12 RT Implant Dx 5/12/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+

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