Is There a Difference Between an Internal Medicine Doctor and an Internist?

Internal Medicine Houston, TX

Internal medicine deals with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of adult diseases. Many have heard of the terms "internal medicine doctor" and "internist," and all too many are confused at what each title means.

The short answer is that they are the same, and the titles are essentially interchangeable with one another. 

An overview of internal medicine

It is helpful to have a complete understanding of what exactly internal medicine is and how it helps diagnose, treat and prevent disease in patients. The following is everything to know about internal medicine and how internists help patients. 

What is internal medicine?

Internal medicine deals with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of adult diseases. It is a relatively broad term. There are many different sub-areas inside of the larger specialty of general internal medicine.

One notable difference between internal medicine and other forms of medical care is that it deals primarily with adult diseases, rather than focusing on the treatment of individuals under the age of eighteen. 

What is an internist?

An internist and an internal medicine doctor are essentially the same. The titles are more or less interchangeable.

An internist is a medical professional that diagnoses and treats patients with a disease or who may be at risk of a certain disease. Internists also deal with prevention. They help patients create a healthy lifestyle that reduces the risk of chronic illness. A general internal medicine doctor deals with diseases of all kinds, but most internists specialize in a particular region of the body. For example, a cardiologist focuses on the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of heart disease. 

When to see an internist

Any adult is more than welcome to schedule a visit with an internist, and you do not need a referral to do so. In fact, it is encouraged to visit an internal medicine doctor to help with the prevention of disease. Additionally, it is helpful to visit an internist anytime symptoms of disease are present.

It is important to keep in mind that internal medicine is broad. It is helpful to visit a specialist depending on your symptoms, such as visiting a cardiologist for heart complications. 

The benefits of internal medicine

Internal medicine deals with everything related to disease, including diagnosis, treatment and prevention. Subsequently, you can know you get the treatment you need when visiting an internist. Also, internists are most often specialized. They spend years studying disease-related issues in a specific area of the body. That makes them more qualified than a family doctor in disease prevention and treatment.

Internists also take pride in working with one another to treat patients as effectively as possible. They can easily refer you to an internal medicine doctor with a different specialty if necessary. 

Find out more about internal medicine

If you have symptoms that cause concern and want to meet with an internal medicine doctor to start the diagnosis process, then reach out to us today. We are here to answer any questions or concerns you may have. 

Request an appointment here: https://www.woodforestmd.com or call Woodforest Pediatric & Family Clinic at (713) 597-6989 for an appointment in our Houston office.

Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Internal Medicine in Houston, TX.

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