Internal medicine is the medical specialty dealing with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of adult diseases. Physicians specializing in internal medicine are called internists.
Internists are equipped to deal with whatever problem a patient brings — no matter how common or rare, or how simple or complex. They are specially trained to solve puzzling diagnostic problems and can handle severe chronic illnesses and situations where several different illnesses may strike at the same time. Internists can be consulted for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer, infections, and diseases affecting the heart, blood, kidneys, joints and digestive, respiratory and vascular systems.
Internists also bring to patients an understanding of wellness (disease prevention and the promotion of health), women’s health, substance abuse, mental health, as well as effective treatment of common problems of the eyes, ears, skin, nervous system and reproductive organs. They also assess patients referred by their physicians for second opinions regarding particular medical disorders.