Internal Medicine

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Internal medicine specifically focuses on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of adult diseases. Rather than focusing on one system of the body, an internist covers the diagnosis and treatment of the entire body and treats both common and complex adult illnesses. Often an individual will stay with one internist throughout all stages of their adult life. Diagnosis and treatment can either take place in the office or a hospital setting depending on the severity of treatment needed.

What is an Internist?

An internist is a doctor that specializes in diagnosing and performing nonsurgical treatment of diseases in adults. They can also serve as a primary care doctor. Internists have a much broader skill set in comparison to a specialist. They care for the entire spectrum of diseases and ailments aside from specific diseases that require expert care from a specialist. Internists are often the consultant to other doctors to help treat symptoms that are difficult to diagnose.

What Does an Internist Do?

An internist is a primary care doctor that focuses on adult medical care no matter how common or rare the illness may be. They can also care for those individuals who may experience multiple severe chronic illnesses at one time. Internists are specially trained and skilled in a wide variety of areas of medicine including health promotion, health maintenance, disease prevention and patient education.

When an individual needs different types of care, internists provide coordinated care with other medical specialists. They work closely with those specialists to develop a plan of action to not only get patients healthy, but to maintain wellness in the years ahead.

Internists also serve as consultants to other internal medicine subspecialties including:

  • Nephrology: diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease.
  • Hematology: prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease in the blood stream.
  • Oncology: treatment of cancer.
  • Pulmonology: diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases.
  • Endocrinology: endocrine system and the regulation of bodily hormones.
  • Gastroenterology: functions of the stomach and intestines.
  • Cardiology: treatment of heart disease.