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subclavian steal

n.
  1. Obstruction of the subclavian artery proximal to the origin of the vertebral artery. Blood flow through the vertebral artery is reversed, causing symptoms of cerebrovascular insufficiency.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.