DDAR Blog

Cancer Survivors Lobby for the Elimination of Colorectal Screening Cost Barriers

Hundreds of cancer patients, survivors and volunteers from the Mid-Atlantic States traveled to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday September 16, 2014 for an annual trip seeking support for continued cancer research, prevention and palliative care funding.Additionally, the group was lobbying for the elimination of colorectal cancer screening cost barriers.

Currently, Medicare patients who seek colonoscopies as preventative measures can see their out-of-pocket costs soar if polyps are found. Because of that potential cost, many people are skipping their scheduled screening procedures despite the fact that studies confirm that more than half of all colorectal cancer deaths could be prevented each year if everyone over the age of 50 is regularly screened. Representative from the American Cancer Society noted that our Congressional representatives need to know that we need to make cancer a national priority.  Every day, across the United States, 1,600 Americans die from cancer.

Please Pass the Broccoli

Do you remember when your parents had to bribe you with some treat, like cake or ice cream to get you to eat your broccoli!  Well! Mom did have your best interest at heart.  As it turns out, broccoli and other cruciferous veggies such as kale, cabbage and cauliflower are loaded with healthful nutrients.

According to NIH funded research being performed by Elizabeth Sattely, whether or not, our bodies can take advantage of the health benefits of the cruciferous vegetables may depend on the bacteria living in our guts.  Dr. Sattely’s research focuses on identifying those species of microbes or bacteria responsible for transforming plant nutrients, like broccoli into beneficial health promoting molecules. Dr. Sattely looks at special molecules found in plants, including a sulfur-containing metabolites, known as glucisinolates, which give broccoli and cauliflower is unique taste and aroma; and they role in inhibiting disease. Dr. Sattely hypothesis is that during digestion, glucosinolates are broken down by bacteria into compounds that provide a variety of beneficial benefit to the body, such as reducing inflammation, inhibit a variety of cancers in animal research models.

Dr. Sattely believes that the community of microbes or bacteria varies among different people, and she hypothesizes that some people’s intestines may not contain enough of certain types of good bacteria to produce optimal levels of plant/ vegetable derived nutrients. 

Here is the link to the entire NIH Article Blog:    http://directorsblog.nih.gov/2014/05/22/creative-minds-broccoli-microbes... 

Exercise & "Good Bacteria" in Your Gut

The New York Times in a Wellness Blog, authored by Gretchen Reynolds show the results of research performed Dr. Fergus Shanahan, Professor of Gastroenterology and the Director of the Alimentary Pharmabiotics Center at University College Cork, part of the National University of Ireland. 

Dr. Shahahan studied professional rugby players, normal-weight men who engage in little exercise, and sedentary men who are overweight or obese and found that the pro athletes harbored the greatest diversity of good bacteria  in their GI tracts and higher levels of Akkermansiaceae, a beneficial bug associated with lowered risk of obesity and inflammation.. Although Dr. Shanahan’s results are still preliminary, he noted that it seems likely that any amount of exercise should make your gut more welcoming to “good bacteria". 

To read the entire NY Times Blog, please click on the following link  The New York Times (tiered subscription model)/Well blog

Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency

The pancreas is one of those body parts you never think about, until something goes wrong with it!  The pancreas is a long, flat gland tucked behind the stomach that does many jobs.  One of those jobs is to make substances called enzymes.  Enzymes allow you to digest the food you eat so that it can be used to nourish your body.  Your pancreas makes enzymes called lipase, protease and amylase.  Lipase helps to break down fats. Protease breaks down proteins, and amylase breaks down carbohydrates. The enzymes from the pancreas are released after food leaves the stomach.  By helping to break down food, your body is able to absorb the nutrients in the food and use them for energy and to help keep you healthy. 

If the pancreas is diseased or damaged, it may not make enough of these important enzymes.  This condition is called Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency or EPI for short.  People with EPI cannot digest their food properly.  This can lead to diarrhea, abdominal cramps, weight loss and other problems and can be very similar to other digestive problems.  

Diagnosis of EPI begins with a visit to a Gastroenterologist, who will complete a thorough review of your medical history to pinpoint the root cause of your symptoms.  You will need to share important information such as the medications or supplements you are taking; your eating habits; recent unexplained weight loss; the severity of the symptoms you are experiencing; change in stool/bowel habits; etc. help your gastroenterology identify and diagnose the source of your problem. Your physician may ask for stool samples to check for high levels of fat or a substance called elastase.  He may suggest other studies may include imaging studies (ultrasound or x-ray) to show pictures of your pancreas to identify any abnormalities.

Your Gastroenterologist has at his/her disposal many tools to help in the diagnosis and management of EPI or any other diseases of the pancreas. . 

Pages

DDAR Blog

5/6/19

Hepatitis Awareness Month

May has been designated as Hepatitis Awareness Month.  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in concert with all public and private healthcare...

Latest News

5/6/19

We are pleased to announce that as of May 23, 2019 all of our physicians will be active with Fidelis Care.   To make an appointment, please call 845-354-3700 and speak with our secretarial staff...