Internal Medicine is considered as both specialty and primary care for adults.
Doctors for Adults
Our certification board is the American Board of Internal Medicine. The American College of Physicians refers to board-certified Internal Medicine physicians as “Doctors for Adults”. Here is their explanation:
Doctors of internal medicine focus on adult medicine and have had special study and training focusing on the prevention and treatment of adult diseases. At least three of their seven or more years of medical school and postgraduate training are dedicated to learning how to prevent, diagnose, and treat diseases that affect adults. Internists are sometimes referred to as the “doctor’s doctor,” because they are often called upon to act as consultants to other physicians to help solve puzzling diagnostic problems.
Caring for the whole patient
Internists are equipped to deal with most problems a patient brings — from common to rare, simple to complex. They are specially trained to solve puzzling diagnostic problems and can handle advanced chronic illnesses and situations where several different illnesses are interacting with one another. They also bring to patients an understanding of wellness (disease prevention and the promotion of health), women’s health, substance abuse, mental health, and the treatment of common problems of the nervous system and skin.
Caring for you for life
In today’s complex medical environment, internists take pride in caring for their patients for life. When other medical specialists, such as surgeons or obstetricians, are involved, internists help coordinate their patient’s care and manage difficult medical problems associated with that care.
Internal Medicine versus Family Medicine: what is the difference?
The length of training is the same. The main distinction is one of ‘depth versus breadth’. In order to focus more training time on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of adult diseases, internists give up practicing pediatrics and obstetrics. Internists don’t see patients younger than 17 years of age, and they don’t deliver babies. Though Dr. Warren’s primary obligation is to the Wise Patient clinic, he still chooses to spend some days caring for hospitalized adults in a internal medicine position referred to as a “hospitalist” . He believes his hospitalist work brings him additional insights about preventing hospitalizations and also how best to care for patients recently discharged from the hospital.
Internal Medicine as Primary Care
Dr. Warren believes that internists are optimally suited to provide primary care for the adult patient. He has trained hard to become an expert in disease prevention, early detection, and health promotion. His focused approach can help you. Research shows us we still miss many opportunities to prevent disease and to prevent ugly complications of existing diseases.