What Is Internal Medicine?

There are many different positions and titles in the medical world. And while the number of different doctors can be confusing, there is one particular field of medicine that you need to be very familiar with. Internal medicine is a specialized field of medicine that primarily handles anything to do with your digestive system. This can also include your sleep patterns as well as ailments such as arthritis. This field is a very specialized field that requires postgraduate education. The individuals that carry this distinction are very educated and very capable of handling the many different diseases and difficulties that you may have. The following guide is going to attempt to explain what internal medicine is all about and why it is so important.

As previously mentioned, internal medicine is a postgraduate level of medicine. This field of study and practice is very specialized and requires a deft touch and a keen eye. This field of medicine is also very demanding. It is important to understand the distinction between an intern and an internist. Internal medicine faculty is often referred to as internist. They are in no way an intern.

Perhaps one of the most specialized fields in the internal medicine category is cardiology. This refers to the heart and this is a very delicate area that requires special training. Cardiology has many different areas to understand. An example of the type of difficulties that an internal medicine cardiologist can face is heart attack, arrhythmia, and myopathy. These are all very serious issues that require different levels of medicine and care. Heart attack can be fatal, as can many other ailments, and can often lead to other serious issues. Issues such as myopathy are related to the inner workings of the heart and can often require surgeries.

Another common that internist will tackle is called endocrinology. The endocrine system of your body refers to the hormone release and levels throughout your body. This is a very common issue found in women, although men are regular patients as well. The endocrine system can range from testosterone levels to estrogen levels, and anything in between. The thyroid also falls into this category and is a very common issue with people having weight difficulties. Endocrine system management is very serious and also requires a specialized touch.

Internist also handles issues related to sports medicine; sleep disorders, as well as organ transplant. With such a wide field of study it is easy to understand and see that internal medicine is a very important field. It is also important to know that an internal medicine doctor can serve as a primary care physician but they are usually not family doctors.

Keep Track of Your Health and Go to an Internal Medicine Practice

Even though you may not have the time to see a primary care physician on a regular basis, it doesn’t hurt for you to go to an internal medicine practice periodically. While you may feel like you are in good health the majority of the time, you need to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are really in good health. Seeing a doctor will allow you to know if you have any diseases or illnesses to worry about. In this day and age, the sooner you are diagnosed, the better your treatment options are.

Did you know that there are some medical conditions that can slowly be eating away at your body while you are unaware of them? You shouldn’t take chances with your health. You can’t predict the future or your chances of coming down with an illness. Do yourself a favor and make an appointment with your local internal medicine practice so you can find out whether or not you have any health issues you need to be concerned about.

A doctor who practices in this field is a professional who studies, diagnoses, and treats adult diseases. Instead of you having to wait on countless test results to come back to your primary doctor and for them to contact you when there is a problem, you can eliminate the middleman and save some time by seeing an internist directly. Keep in mind that the practice of internal medicine is very broad and internists can practice in just about any field of medicine.

Since it may be challenging for you to make an appointment during your work hours to be seen and treated, you can always go to an urgent care facility or after hours facility. Many of these practices have an internal medicine department on site. They are open later and have weekend hours to accommodate your busy schedule. Some places require you to make an appointment while others do not. No matter what your time constraints are, it is much easier for you to see an internist at an after hours facility than it is for you to go to a regular 9 to 5 practice. It doesn’t matter if you have health insurance or not. You shouldn’t let your financial situation stop you from getting the care and treatment you need. Take charge of your life and know that many of these places are much more affordable than you think.

Don’t let your busy lifestyle keep you away from the doctor. Don’t let your obligations keep you from keeping up with your health. No matter what you have going on, make every effort possible to see an internal medicine practice several times a year for testing and treatment if necessary. Take some time to learn where the medical facilities are that have an internist and make an appointment to see them. Or if you really are pressed for time, go to an after hours clinic and be seen.

Internal Medicine Doctor – Description of One

An Internal Medicine doctor is a doctor who deals specifically with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of diseases in adults as well as nonsurgical health issues in adults. Doctors of Internal Medicine are also called internists. Sometimes they are considered to be a “doctor’s doctor.” The reason for this is because other physicians sometimes call upon their area of expertise and need them to act as consultants in diagnostic health problems of a puzzling or uncertain nature.

Internal Medicine is a specialty in the field of medicine that does not focus in on one particular area of the human body but instead views it as a whole. While the name- Internal Medicine Doctor- may seem to imply that these healthcare professionals work only with the internal organs of a patient that is actually not the case. Physicians who work in this medical capacity also routinely treat conditions of an external nature. Internists are used to seeing patients with a broad range of medical problems which is why they become well acquainted with a vast array of conditions.

It is not uncommon for an Internal Medicine Doctor to be called in on a case that has left other doctors baffled in terms of a diagnosis and a course of treatment. These doctors often help to solve medical puzzles because their field is so vast.

This area of medicine has a selection of subspecialties. Doctors can choose to sub- specialize if they so wish to. Examples of two subspecialties in Internal Medicine include immunology, which is the study of disorders of the immune system as well as allergies, and nephrology which is the study of how the kidneys work. Some other examples include cardiology, oncology, endocrinology, infectious disease hematology and rheumatology. There are 13 subspecialties of Internal Medicine that have been identified in the United States.

Those who train to work in Internal Medicine can treat all sorts of problems. They can treat cancer and hepatitis and an array of other conditions. These physicians treat both males and females. Some work as primary care doctors even though their training is more specialized in nature than that of a general practitioner (GP).

It is important to note that these doctors treat only adult patients and do not take care of babies or children. As well they rarely perform any type of surgeries and do not treat pregnant women or any type of reproductive health condition. As well these physicians do not get involved with orthopedic health problems or traumas. The only exception to this is when these conditions overlap with other conditions that they are trained to treat.

The list of health concerns, illnesses and conditions that an Internal Medicine doctor can treat is long and exhaustive. As previously mentioned, this is a broad area of medicine that encompasses many different health conditions. This kind of specialist can treat chronic conditions as well as external conditions that affect the skin, hair, nails, ears or eyes. He/she is sometimes even asked to help out with issues that relate to the mental health and well being of a patient.

What Is an Internal Medicine Doctor?

An internal medicine doctor is a physician who specializes in the treatment, prevention and diagnoses of diseases that affect adults. An internal medicine doctor is also known as an internist, not to be confused with an intern who is a doctor in training. An internist treats the whole body, not just one aspect of it. They are often referred to as a doctor’s doctor because they are called in to help diagnosis cases that can be difficult to diagnose. Because they often work with other doctor’s in the care of their patient, such as a surgeon they most coordinate their patient’s care for optimal results. Internists who don’t focus on the whole body may specialize in one area such as a cardiologist who focuses care on the heart.

An internal medicine doctor has years of research training along with diagnostic skills that combine to make them highly qualified and skilled to treat and prevent diseases in adults. This can come in handy if you disease is not a textbook disease that is easily diagnosed. Think of television’s Dr. House for an example of this type of doctor. Hopefully your actual real life doctor will of course have a better bedside manner though.

If you are looking for an internist a good place to start your search is with referrals from friends or family members. Generally men over the age of thirty five a greater chance of seeing an internist than their younger counterparts so friends, family or co workers in this age range can probably give you a good referral. Since you are looking for a doctor who doesn’t generally practice family medicine as a specialist, the referral may also come from your family doctor who is treating you currently but is unable to diagnose your symptoms.

During your first visit you will likely go over your medical history, including your family history and it’s a good idea to try and remember before your visit as accurately as you can as much about your family’s medical history as well as your own. You should also be sure to bring your current prescription bottles with you so your doctor can see exactly what you are currently taking and who prescribed them. Sometimes prescribed medication can interact with other medications or even your diet and present symptoms that are initially confusing.

It can also help to write out all of your symptoms; no matter how unimportant you may feel they are ahead of time and how long you remember experiencing them. Patients can often feel rushed or forgetful in the doctor’s office so having things prewritten is a good way to jog your memory and make sure every symptom is brought up for discussion.

Be sure to coordinate your care with your primary doctor to ensure all of your medical records are open to the internist so your whole medical history can be brought into the diagnostic picture and hopefully your internist can shed light on your medical problems and you’ll be back in the main stream again.

Internal Medicine and the Doctors Who Practice It

Internal medicine is a field in the medical profession in which the professionals diagnose and treat patients who might have adult diseases which they have studied and trained in. This field is rather broad which is why there are some sub-specialties for those who are educated and trained here. They are basically considered as primary care physicians but they cannot be labeled as pediatricians and general practitioners. A good part of their education and training, which is about seven years, is dedicated to learning about prevention, diagnosis and the treatment of diseases that affect adults.

Common Diseases

The common diseases that internists treat are quiet numerous. Their practice covers a broad aspect of the field and these diseases often fall under cardiology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, infectious diseases, pulmonology and many more. There are about 13 subspecialties that fall under this field and there are some that have more patients than others. Cardiologists initially study internal medicine for about seven years as the foundation of their subspecialty. There is an additional three to five years in order to focus on the education and training or the cardiologic field. Included in this field are the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease that concern the heart, the blood vessels and the circulation of the blood around the body. Heart diseases, difficulty in breathing and chest pains are usually brought to the attention of the cardiologist.

Endocrinologists have the same foundation as all other internists; about seven years of education and training in medical school. An additional two to three years is necessary to subspecialize in this field. Those who practice here focus on the function and circulation of the human body’s hormones. The endocrine system covers a large area of the human body including but not limited to tissues and all other glands common and specific to both the male and female bodies. Internal medicine practitioners who specialize in endocrinology cover most parts of the human body since these parts function with the use of hormones. Gastroenterology covers the digestive system of the human body.

There are a few major parts of this system, including but not limited to the oral cavity, the stomach and the colon. The practitioners of this subspecialty cannot perform any form of surgery on the patient, especially those related to their field unless they have studied surgery separately. Infectious disease is another broad field in which internists can practice with the addition of a few years into their education and training. Their education and training focus on infections that are caused by fungi, bacteria and other sources. They mainly prescribe and are knowledgeable in antibiotics which may be specific to the kinds of infections that plague the human race.

Pulmonology includes, but is not limited to the lungs and the other aspects of the respiratory system, which may include the heart. The internal medicine specialists of this field help to prevent, diagnose and treat most of the diseases found here. Pneumonia, asthma and other respiratory diseases and conditions are covered here.