Often called internal medicine physicians, internists, or general internists (but not “interns,” those are doctors in their first year of residency training), they have been referred to as the “doctor’s doctor” for their expertise in solving challenging medical puzzles and diagnoses and called upon by other physicians for input and collaboration.
Internists are not family or general physicians or practitioners as they focus solely on adults. Their training and education concentrates on common and complex adult medical issues in both general medicine and internal medicine subspecialties. They are experts on internal organs and well-versed in the interaction between them.
They provide patient diagnoses and long-term care of chronic illnesses, as well as caring for people with multiple diseases. They often forge solid, trusting relationships with these patients that can last decades or the entire span of the medical issue, treating and supporting each step of the way.
With a commitment to holistic care, Internists also address disease prevention, overall well-being, mental health, and routine exams. They are certified to prescribe and administer medications, immunizations, and treatments.
The training and education of an internist is prolific. Starting with earning a bachelor’s degree, they move onto four years of medical school, followed by a residency program that lasts three years. During this time, emphasis is placed on extreme problem-solving and the ability to handle almost any medical issue. While pursuing their residency, internists get their medical license and become board certified in internal medicine.
An internist also has the option of choosing to subspecialize. Each specialization requires one to four years of additional training. These include allergy and immunology, cardiology, endocrinology, hematology, infectious diseases, gastroenterology, nephrology, oncology, pulmonology, and rheumatology.
Conditions, Treatments, and Services
Since internal medicine physicians diagnose, treat, and prevent illnesses and diseases, they provide a myriad of services and options for their patients.
Preventative Procedures and Screenings:
- Blood pressure and cholesterol
- Bone density
- Colorectal and gynecological cancer
- Holter monitoring (heart rhythm)
- Stress tests
- Adult immunizations (Diphtheria and tetanus, Flu, Hepatitis A & B, HPV, Pneumococcal, Shingles, Whooping cough)
- Hormone tests
- Annual exams for men and women
- Preoperative evaluations
- Nutritional counseling
- Acute conditions (sinus infections, flu, common cold, bronchitis, strep throat, pneumonia)
- High blood pressure
- Pulmonary diseases
- Kidney problems
- Arthritis and other rheumatologic conditions
- Blood disorders
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Digestive disorders
- Immunologic disorders (allergies, asthma)
- Infectious diseases
- Neurological conditions
- Thyroid conditions and dysfunctions of the endocrine system
- Therapeutic injections for pain management (Cortisone shots, trigger point injections)
- Skin biopsies
- Laceration repair
- Removal of foreign bodies from eyes and skin
- Abscess drainage
- Excision of skin lesions
- Simple fracture care
*Inquire as to which provider performs certain procedures.
When You Should See Your Provider
Check out Stellis Health’s internal medicine doctors available at two of our locations.