Q. What is an internist?

A. An internist is a specialist trained in the diagnosis and treatment of a broad range of diseases involving all organ systems, and is especially skilled in the management of patients who have undifferentiated or multisystem disease processes. Internists care for patients in the office setting, hospital, intensive care unit, long term facilities and hospice situations. An internist treats late adolescents, young adults, adults and the elderly.

Q. What health issues can an internist help me with?

A. Examples of what an internist manages include disease of the brain, heart, blood vessels, lungs, kidneys, liver, nerves, intestines, joints – every intricate system that makes your body function. More specific examples include conditions such as heart and lung disease, asthma, migraines, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, blood clots, reflux disease, osteoporosis, obesity, depression, sleep disorders, arthritis and allergies. An internist also provides preventive screening for healthy patients to detect potentially curable diseases.

Q. What if my health issue requires help beyond internal medicine?

A. Internal medicine is the foundation of medical specialties and is in effect the essence of medicine. Since its training encompasses all the medical subspecialties, the internist is well suited to make the appropriate referral when needed.