LadyDay

So scared of the future

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Hi guys.

I just need to talk to people who might understand what it's like.

I'm so scared! I got a FitBit (activity tracker) yesterday and it confirms the number I've gotten along with regular blood pressure measurements. My resting heart rate is constantly around 100. I am so scared of what that's doing to my heart! At the same time my blood pressure is a bit higher than it should be. I'm so scared of soon getting really ill and eventually dying young. 

And I'm in so much pain. I try to exercise, but even light exercise hurts so much. I pushed myself through a 25 minute walk today and now I can barely stand or walk around the apartment for a few minutes because my whole back hurts so much. I had to constantly lean on the counter while doing dishes. 

I'm so, so scared of not being granted surgery because I'm not ill enough yet. My weight related illness so far is basically that it significantly worsens my bad anxiety and depression issues. I am waiting to hear from the hospital if they're willing to take me in for evaluation, to decide if I can get surgery. There's far from any guarantee. But I feel like surgery is my last shot at getting healthy and preventing getting really ill. My GP has really put effort into arguing to the hospital for why I should be considered for surgery. I just hope they listen and find me eligible. I don't know what to do if they don't. It's really ridiculous and ironic, but I'm being tested for sleep apnea in a week and a half and I can't help kinda hoping I have it. Not to a bad degree, but some. That is a somatic illness that would almost guarantee me an operation. And hopefully would go away with weight loss (I didn't snore before I put on weight). 

I'm really scared and sad.

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25 minutes ago, LadyDay said:

Hi guys.

I just need to talk to people who might understand what it's like.

I'm so scared! I got a FitBit (activity tracker) yesterday and it confirms the number I've gotten along with regular blood pressure measurements. My resting heart rate is constantly around 100. I am so scared of what that's doing to my heart! At the same time my blood pressure is a bit higher than it should be. I'm so scared of soon getting really ill and eventually dying young. 

And I'm in so much pain. I try to exercise, but even light exercise hurts so much. I pushed myself through a 25 minute walk today and now I can barely stand or walk around the apartment for a few minutes because my whole back hurts so much. I had to constantly lean on the counter while doing dishes. 

I'm so, so scared of not being granted surgery because I'm not ill enough yet. My weight related illness so far is basically that it significantly worsens my bad anxiety and depression issues. I am waiting to hear from the hospital if they're willing to take me in for evaluation, to decide if I can get surgery. There's far from any guarantee. But I feel like surgery is my last shot at getting healthy and preventing getting really ill. My GP has really put effort into arguing to the hospital for why I should be considered for surgery. I just hope they listen and find me eligible. I don't know what to do if they don't. It's really ridiculous and ironic, but I'm being tested for sleep apnea in a week and a half and I can't help kinda hoping I have it. Not to a bad degree, but some. That is a somatic illness that would almost guarantee me an operation. And hopefully would go away with weight loss (I didn't snore before I put on weight). 

I'm really scared and sad.

Don't be scared, be purposeful. (Easy for me to say now; I was deeply frightened by my worsening sleep apnea before my surgery).

You are doing the right thing. You are essentially putting together a list of medical conditions you have that will be improved by the surgery to make a convincing case. Not sure about Denmark but here in the US most insurance companies pay for surgery is your BMI is greater than 40, or if between 35 and 40 you have several obesity-related conditions or family tendencies. Here, if your parents or siblings have developed a condition like congestive heart failure, or diabetes, that may be counted by your insurance company too. 

- Get the sleep apnea documented next week - if you developed snoring, most likely you have it. Get that box ticked. 

- Get the back pain documented as well. Orthopedic issues can be disabling. Make sure your GP has, in writing, a description of your back pain, and your need for support while doing dishes, after a walk. You are looking to get this box ticked "yes" ...

- Make sure you blood pressure and resting heart rates are recorded by your GP - hypertension will be improved by surgery.

(About 20% of people after surgery have their heart rates fall into the lower than usual range, but this is a normal response and a sign of improving health. About 6 months after my surgery, I counted my pulse one morning and it was 38! It's now usually 50-60). 

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33 minutes ago, BurgundyBoy said:

Don't be scared, be purposeful. (Easy for me to say now; I was deeply frightened by my worsening sleep apnea before my surgery).

You are doing the right thing. You are essentially putting together a list of medical conditions you have that will be improved by the surgery to make a convincing case. Not sure about Denmark but here in the US most insurance companies pay for surgery is your BMI is greater than 40, or if between 35 and 40 you have several obesity-related conditions or family tendencies. Here, if your parents or siblings have developed a condition like congestive heart failure, or diabetes, that may be counted by your insurance company too. 

- Get the sleep apnea documented next week - if you developed snoring, most likely you have it. Get that box ticked. 

- Get the back pain documented as well. Orthopedic issues can be disabling. Make sure your GP has, in writing, a description of your back pain, and your need for support while doing dishes, after a walk. You are looking to get this box ticked "yes" ...

- Make sure you blood pressure and resting heart rates are recorded by your GP - hypertension will be improved by surgery.

(About 20% of people after surgery have their heart rates fall into the lower than usual range, but this is a normal response and a sign of improving health. About 6 months after my surgery, I counted my pulse one morning and it was 38! It's now usually 50-60). 

You are right, I have to take a deep breath and be determined and document everything in detail. 

In Denmark, at a BMI between 35 and 40 you need significant obesity-related conditions, above 40 you still need some particular reason for needing surgery other than just your weight and above 50 you automatically qualify. My BMI is 41, so hopefully that gives me a decent chance. I will fight for this! 

It's good to hear there's a good chance my heart rate will go down following surgery/weight loss. And I will keep at it with exercise too.

Has your sleep apnea improved since you've lost weight?

Thanks for reminding me that I'm not totally helpless, but can in fact do something to get this. 

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15 minutes ago, LadyDay said:

You are right, I have to take a deep breath and be determined and document everything in detail. 

In Denmark, at a BMI between 35 and 40 you need significant obesity-related conditions, above 40 you still need some particular reason for needing surgery other than just your weight and above 50 you automatically qualify. My BMI is 41, so hopefully that gives me a decent chance. I will fight for this! 

It's good to hear there's a good chance my heart rate will go down following surgery/weight loss. And I will keep at it with exercise too.

Has your sleep apnea improved since you've lost weight?

Thanks for reminding me that I'm not totally helpless, but can in fact do something to get this. 

LadyDay, my sleep apnea is gone. Gone. I no longer wake up with a racing heart, no longer am tired during the day, and my wife no longer is frightened by me failing to breathe during the night. 

If I snore now it is usually because I indulged in some grape-derived beverage, often Burgundy colored, after dinner. :rolleyes:

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53 minutes ago, BurgundyBoy said:

LadyDay, my sleep apnea is gone. Gone. I no longer wake up with a racing heart, no longer am tired during the day, and my wife no longer is frightened by me failing to breathe during the night. 

If I snore now it is usually because I indulged in some grape-derived beverage, often Burgundy colored, after dinner. :rolleyes:

That is awesome that it's completely gone! I'm sure it's a big relief for you both! It must indeed have been frightening to be so severely hit! 

I know my boyfriend would love for me to get rid of the snoring! Your wife must enjoy the peace and quiet! 

I too enjoy the occasional grape-derived beverage. It's good that it's still ok to have a glass here and there, on special occasions. :) 

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3 hours ago, LadyDay said:

That is awesome that it's completely gone! I'm sure it's a big relief for you both! It must indeed have been frightening to be so severely hit! 

I know my boyfriend would love for me to get rid of the snoring! Your wife must enjoy the peace and quiet! 

I too enjoy the occasional grape-derived beverage. It's good that it's still ok to have a glass here and there, on special occasions. :) 

In large part, the thing that really drove me to having surgery was my worsening sleep apnea. I am not tolerant of (able to wear) the masks and so found myself waking up gasping in the middle of the night with a rapid, fast heart rate ... and your heart is supposed to be resting at night, not the opposite. I had gained a couple of pounds and it seemed to have taken me over an edge of some sort to much worse sleep apnea. It frightened me even more than the other bad stuff I had related to my weight.

My wife was not able to consistently sleep through the night with me gurgling, gasping, and snoring so this is much better now. B)

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@LadyDay

immediately after surgery, I was off my blood pressure medicine and one of my depression prescriptions. A couple of weeks later, I was off the cpap. At six months, I went off all gerd/acid reflux related medicine with no issues. 

The one side note I have is I went back on the bp meds after a few months because it was borderline high again and I was getting headaches. I just take half of the lowest dose every day. I’ve been taking it for 25 years and it runs in my family, so I think it’ll be awhile before I can stop it, if ever.

the other stuff I take is one depression rx and the required supplements. Easy peasy!

hope this helps!

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1 hour ago, Boston Redhead said:

@LadyDay

immediately after surgery, I was off my blood pressure medicine and one of my depression prescriptions. A couple of weeks later, I was off the cpap. At six months, I went off all gerd/acid reflux related medicine with no issues. 

The one side note I have is I went back on the bp meds after a few months because it was borderline high again and I was getting headaches. I just take half of the lowest dose every day. I’ve been taking it for 25 years and it runs in my family, so I think it’ll be awhile before I can stop it, if ever.

the other stuff I take is one depression rx and the required supplements. Easy peasy!

hope this helps!

It's incredible how fast and effectively things can improve! It makes me feel confident that if/when I get the surgery I'll get to live a long, healthy life. I have a good life these days and want to keep it, not keel over by the time I'm 50! If I can even cut down on anti-depressants that would be absolutely amazing (I take a hefty cocktail of 7 different ones at the moment)!

I will push for getting this surgery until I get it!

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My BMI barely qualified me but with diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol I did.  My BMI was 40-41, I was considered lightweight..

one step at a time.  Get the sleep test done..

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8 hours ago, Cheesehead said:

My BMI barely qualified me but with diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol I did.  My BMI was 40-41, I was considered lightweight..

one step at a time.  Get the sleep test done..

I'm starting out at the same BMI as you. I don't feel particularly lightweight though! :D But I'm glad I haven't made it even worse yet.

I just got a letter with an appointment from the hospital. So they at least want to take a look at me. I remain hopeful. It won't be until December unfortunately. I'm obviously eager to get started.

Yes, one step at the time. I'm getting the sleep test done in a week. A little nervous, but it's important to know if there is anything. 

I'll get my health back!

Edited by LadyDay

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12 hours ago, LadyDay said:

....

I just got a letter with an appointment from the hospital. So they at least want to take a look at me. I remain hopeful. It won't be until December unfortunately. I'm obviously eager to get started.

Yes, one step at the time. I'm getting the sleep test done in a week. A little nervous, but it's important to know if there is anything. 

I'll get my health back!

Urge you to find out what kinds of documentation are needed so you can be prepared ... here, most insurance programs require at least 6 months of a supervised attempt to lose weight through dieting. That means diet counselling, regular check-ins with weights, and sometimes some form of diet log. 

There have been people posting here who missed one appointment and did not have 6 months of documented supervision -> had to start over. 

On the other hand, I went to my surgical team and (by chance) had completed a year of attempted weight loss (with diet and exercise) and had recorded daily weights for most of the year, and (by chance) had visited my doctor and had weights done during the same period. My insurance accepted that as a supervised process, which it was in a loose way, (I do not have an evil insurance company) and it moved me ahead 6 months. 

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I don't have to deal with an insurance company, because we have free health care here, but I should still make sure the hospital can see in my journal that I have tried supervised diet in the past, because that's a requirement. I didn't log what food I ate back then, but I worked with a nurse, had regular counselling with her and got weight measured and blood samples taken along the way. So hopefully that counts. I'm pretty sure the doctors at the hospital get full access to my journal, so they can look it up, but I should make sure. To get the surgery you also have to do three months diet and lose 8% of your weight immediately before the surgery, but that is to shrink the liver, so the supervised diet I've done in the past couldn't count, since I've put all the weight back on. 

How great that you got moved forward like that and didn't have to do another 6 months of dieting and waiting! Did you still have to do some form of diet to shrink the liver before surgery? For how long? I'm glad I won't have a liquid diet before the surgery, just normal healthy food (to lose the 8%).

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On 9/27/2019 at 11:47 PM, LadyDay said:

... To get the surgery you also have to do three months diet and lose 8% of your weight immediately before the surgery, but that is to shrink the liver, so the supervised diet I've done in the past couldn't count, since I've put all the weight back on. 

How great that you got moved forward like that and didn't have to do another 6 months of dieting and waiting! Did you still have to do some form of diet to shrink the liver before surgery? For how long? I'm glad I won't have a liquid diet before the surgery, just normal healthy food (to lose the 8%).

Yes, I was very lucky in terms of not needing to do another 6 months of supervised dieting. I had a record of my daily weights, how far I had cycled or how long I had gone to the gym every day, and so forth, but that is just because I am a compulsive nerd. 

Others may remember more details (invoking @cinwa and @Res Ipsa), but we did have a person who posted here who did the 6 month diet but because he failed to lose weight he was denied surgery. They failed to tell him that he had to lose weight to be considered eligible! and of course the reason to have surgery is that you don't lose enough weight with diet and exercise, so this was circular logic if you ask me. He protested that decision and had a bypass later. (He was a dairy farmer in Wisconsin or Michigan, as I recall). 

My BMI was just under 40 and so my surgeon said I didn't need to lose any weight before the surgery. They did have me go on a liquid diet for a weekend so I could see what it was like, and then for the 48 hours before surgery (and of course afterwards for ~ 10 days). At the time I had the surgery I was only vaguely aware of the efforts so many people have to make before surgery. 

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1 hour ago, BurgundyBoy said:

Yes, I was very lucky in terms of not needing to do another 6 months of supervised dieting. I had a record of my daily weights, how far I had cycled or how long I had gone to the gym every day, and so forth, but that is just because I am a compulsive nerd. 

Others may remember more details (invoking @cinwa and @Res Ipsa), but we did have a person who posted here who did the 6 month diet but because he failed to lose weight he was denied surgery. They failed to tell him that he had to lose weight to be considered eligible! and of course the reason to have surgery is that you don't lose enough weight with diet and exercise, so this was circular logic if you ask me. He protested that decision and had a bypass later. (He was a dairy farmer in Wisconsin or Michigan, as I recall). 

My BMI was just under 40 and so my surgeon said I didn't need to lose any weight before the surgery. They did have me go on a liquid diet for a weekend so I could see what it was like, and then for the 48 hours before surgery (and of course afterwards for ~ 10 days). At the time I had the surgery I was only vaguely aware of the efforts so many people have to make before surgery. 

Sometimes it's good to be a data nerd! I like nerds. I consider myself one too (science nerd).

That is my fear too. That I won't manage to lose the weight required for the operation. I'm going to do everything I can, but the fear of it not working is still there. If I don't lose the 8% then they won't do the operation (it doesn't matter what your starting weight is, you still have to lose it). At least they make that clear, so it won't be a surprise. But you are right, it doesn't make complete sense to have to lose weight with diet and exercise when the failure of that is the whole reason for the operation. But I'll suck it up and do my very best! Ironically I kinda have to wait with weight loss until I'm approved for the surgery (before the supervised 3 months), so my BMI doesn't slip below 40 before then (I've gotten appointments in December and January for the evaluation to see if I qualify). 

Lucky bastard! Haha.

I just had an appointment with my psychiatrist today and she doesn't see any psychological reason why I shouldn't have the surgery. No red flags. So she's in support. Now I just have to get my boyfriend to stop feeling negative about the operation. He's still resistant, contrary to everybody else. Men are wimps! :rolleyes: No offense :D 

 

Edited by LadyDay

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Is it 8 per cent of your total weight or 8 per cent of the amount you are overweight?  I was told not to gain weight.  I was on so many medications and some of the side effects were weight gain.  I did take off 6 whole pounds in my 6 months.  

I did not have to do a liquid diet, thank god!  My daughter and son in law did; not fun!  

As you get your “ducks in a row” time seems to drag.  But use the time to make better habits..

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7 hours ago, Cheesehead said:

Is it 8 per cent of your total weight or 8 per cent of the amount you are overweight?  I was told not to gain weight.  I was on so many medications and some of the side effects were weight gain.  I did take off 6 whole pounds in my 6 months.  

I did not have to do a liquid diet, thank god!  My daughter and son in law did; not fun!  

As you get your “ducks in a row” time seems to drag.  But use the time to make better habits..

It's 8% of my total weight. I'm also on a bunch of medication that has weight gain as a side effect, so it's a bit of an uphill battle. But I think I can do it. I have to! Were you still on your medication after surgery? Do you think those medications effected your post-op weight loss? I can see you've been very successful. Awesome!

Being on a liquid diet before surgery you must be starving! I'm glad I don't have to either.

Yeah, I'll use this waiting time in a constructive way. I figure the more good habits I develop now, the easier it will be up to and after surgery. 

I was just wondering about something you can probably answer by the way. After surgery, do you eventually become able to drink at a normal pace again? Or is it only small sips for life?

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5 hours ago, LadyDay said:

After surgery, do you eventually become able to drink at a normal pace again? Or is it only small sips for life?

Hello! I can answer that because I had the same question not that long ago. I can only speak based on my experience though. I had VSG three months ago and although at the beginning I could only drink in very small sips, now I am able to drink almost normally. Not as fast as I used to, but definitely not in little sips anymore. Huge relief : ) I drink water and protein shakes. The only difference is the quantity. I have to take some time to finish a full glass, so in general find it difficult to hit the daily fluid targets. Also, the fact that you cannot drink immediately before or after meals makes it a bit more challenging.

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1 minute ago, BrightDay said:

Hello! I can answer that because I had the same question not that long ago. I can only speak based on my experience though. I had VSG three months ago and although at the beginning I could only drink in very small sips, now I am able to drink almost normally. Not as fast as I used to, but definitely not in little sips anymore. Huge relief : ) I drink water and protein shakes. The only difference is the quantity. I have to take some time to finish a full glass, so in general find it difficult to hit the daily fluid targets. Also, the fact that you cannot drink immediately before or after meals makes it a bit more challenging.

Congratulations on the surgery! 

Thanks for the answer. It's good to know it's eventually possible to drink pretty normally. especially when exercising. Tiny sips when thirsty sounds ineffective! The fluid targets do sound like a challenge. I guess you pretty much have to sip continuously all day, except around meals. Sounds like a bit of a chore! Still, I can't wait to be there myself! :)

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I am really happy with the results of the surgery so far but realistically it's still very early days. I hope that all will continue well. At least, I have dropped 22 kilos so far and keep losing, so in that sense the surgery is working.

I felt identified with your story because I also had to fight with my insurance to cover the surgery, and underwent all kind of tests and consultations, but unfortunately I was not successful, so ended up paying for it myself. I was close to a BMI of 40, which was the cutoff, but by then I was tired of arguing with the insurance about comorbidities, and didn't feel like gaining another 5-8 kilos to get a chance qualify. But insurance companies are very different from national health services, so you will most likely get approval as you meet the conditions.

Anyway, I wish you all the best!  

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1 hour ago, BrightDay said:

I am really happy with the results of the surgery so far but realistically it's still very early days. I hope that all will continue well. At least, I have dropped 22 kilos so far and keep losing, so in that sense the surgery is working.

I felt identified with your story because I also had to fight with my insurance to cover the surgery, and underwent all kind of tests and consultations, but unfortunately I was not successful, so ended up paying for it myself. I was close to a BMI of 40, which was the cutoff, but by then I was tired of arguing with the insurance about comorbidities, and didn't feel like gaining another 5-8 kilos to get a chance qualify. But insurance companies are very different from national health services, so you will most likely get approval as you meet the conditions.

Anyway, I wish you all the best!  

You are speaking in metric units, are you European too? :) 

Good job on the 22 kilos! It must be absolutely wonderful to feel the weight melt off like that!

Yeah, it would be a bit silly to put on weight to get surgery to lose weight! Good that you were able to pay for it yourself. It is not cheap I bet. But hopefully you feel it's worth it! My BMI is just above 40, so hopefully I can convince them to get the surgery even though I don't have somatic comorbidities (unless it turns out I have sleep apnea. I'll know on the 11th.) "only" mental ones. I hope you're right that they think I meet the conditions. Fingers crossed! 

Thank you for the well wishes.  

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37 minutes ago, LadyDay said:

re you European too

Not European, but live in Europe : )

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3 minutes ago, BrightDay said:

Not European, but live in Europe : )

Hope you like it and feel welcome. :) 

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On 10/1/2019 at 11:11 PM, LadyDay said:

It's 8% of my total weight. I'm also on a bunch of medication that has weight gain as a side effect, so it's a bit of an uphill battle. But I think I can do it. I have to! Were you still on your medication after surgery? Do you think those medications effected your post-op weight loss? I can see you've been very successful. Awesome!

Being on a liquid diet before surgery you must be starving! I'm glad I don't have to either.

Yeah, I'll use this waiting time in a constructive way. I figure the more good habits I develop now, the easier it will be up to and after surgery. 

I was just wondering about something you can probably answer by the way. After surgery, do you eventually become able to drink at a normal pace again? Or is it only small sips for life?

I went home on a few meds but was quickly taken off of them.  

I can drink about 8 ounce of liquid.  I don’t like the sip sip thing.  Earlier out I set aside 4 bottles of water per day.  (16 .9 ounces each) so I knew I was getting my fluids.  Immediately after surgery I drank a shot glass of water every 15 minutes.  8 hours and done.  I set the timer on my phone.  I still like my water flavored and ice cold.  I put a sugarfree lemonade powdered stick in my water and put in the freezer for a half hour til it’s slushy...this is my new “normal”.  I’m used to it now.  The first summer I drank too much too fast and it came out my nose.  Lesson learned..

Edited by Cheesehead

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On ‎10‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 11:11 PM, LadyDay said:

I was just wondering about something you can probably answer by the way. After surgery, do you eventually become able to drink at a normal pace again? Or is it only small sips for life?

As a sleever almost 5 years out, I can drink as much water at a time as I want.  I learned that in a summer after being out doing lots of yard work in the hot sun and without thinking just chugged water straight out of the garden hose like the old days...no problems :)   

May not be the typical experience but I have no problems drinking any quantity of water at a time that my body needs.

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@Cheesehead 

Great idea with the slushy! I'll have to try that. Good you get used to not being able to chug water. I guess it's a case of keeping on top of the drinking so you never get too thirsty?

 

@msmarymac

I'm hoping for that result. It take some medication that has the side effect that I easily sweat a lot (lovely, I know) and therefor get really thirsty, so I'd like to eventually be able to satisfy the thirst faster than "sip, sip, sip"!

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