Internal Medicine physicians are called “Internists” and often serve as primary care physicians for adults. Internists should not be confused with “interns,” who are doctors in their first year of residency training.
Training for Internal Medicine is focused on adult diseases. Conditions such as heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and chronic lung disease are routinely seen by Internists. An Internist may either consult with doctors in other fields of medicine, or may be called to consult on a patient by another specialist.
Internists are usually able to deal with numerous common and complex patient problems. 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. They 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.