Ask the Doctor: Holiday overeating, antibiotics shortage, the efficacy of Cologuard

Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 12:50 PM EST
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Dr. Bob Cassady from the South Bend Clinic joins us every week on 16 News Now at Noon to answer your medical questions.

Question #1: Any tips for not overeating on Thanksgiving?

Dr. Bob Cassady: When I talk with my patients about dieting, I am always clear that feasting is okay on rare occasions. This is precisely the idea of a celebration or holiday.

We do something out of the ordinary. If ordinarily, you are eating a good diet, then you can feast a few times a year. The problem most of us have is that we feast all the time. One way to try to cut down on overeating is to eat more fiber. This would mean increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet.

I would specifically recommend trying to eat these things first.

This can help fill you up and decrease the amount of carbohydrates and fats that you take in.”

Question #2: Is there truly a shortage of antibiotics?

Dr. Bob Cassady: This is sort of a social/logistical question rather than a medical question.

In looking at news reports, it does seem like there has specifically been a shortage of amoxicillin recently. It isn’t clear if this is due to supply chain issues or an increase in the usage of the antibiotic.

However, in my experience as a physician, drug shortages are not uncommon. We often receive messages about this or that medicine that is in short supply, and we adjust as necessary.”

Question #3: Is Cologuard as effective as a colonoscopy in detecting cancer?

Dr. Bob Cassady: There is a lot to unpack in this question.

  • For patients with a family history of colon cancer, it is preferable to get a colonoscopy over a stool test such as Cologuard.
  • For average-risk patients, it is acceptable to do either a colonoscopy or a stool test.

The effectiveness of Cologuard and a colonoscopy is not equivalent. However, the sensitivity of Cologuard is very good, above 90 percent. Cologuard will detect slightly less cancers than a colonoscopy. However, it is felt to be sufficiently effective to recommend as a screening test for colon cancers.”