Selecting a primary healthcare physician is an important step in managing your health and well-being. Your primary physician is your medical home, a place you visit for most of your medical needs. Visits often include wellness assessments, screening, non-emergency illnesses and disease management. In general, internists and family practitioners serve as an individual’s primary doctor. When seeking a primary care physician, it is important to know what the different specialty areas offer so you can find a medical home that meets your needs.
For patients, there is often some confusion between family medicine and internal medicine practitioners. While there are a number of similarities; there are also some important differences.
Both internal medicine and family medicine physicians complete a residency. The focus of the residency is what differentiates the two fields of medicine. Family practice residency focuses on providing comprehensive care for the whole family, from newborns to elderly. Doctors of internal medicine, internists, focus on comprehensive adult medicine and typically do not see patients under the age of 18.
Internists are specifically trained to diagnose and treat disease in the adult population; we are experts in helping patients prevent or delay the initial onset of certain diseases by recognizing and controlling risk factors such as elevated blood pressure and cholesterol. While the name, internal medicine, commonly leads people to think we only treat internal problems, our breadth and scope of care extends to the whole person.
We manage a broad array of health issues including heart disease; diabetes; high blood pressure; injury care; muscle, bone and joint problems; psychological issues; mental health; stomach, intestinal and urinary system complaints; along with allergies and infections. In addition we do annual physicals and administer immunizations. When necessary, we coordinate and work with sub-specialists.
According to the American College of Physicians, “Internists 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.”
It is my goal to work with each patient to develop a trusting and strong relationship; a relationship where we can partner to make certain lifestyle changes before a serious illness occurs. When dealing with chronic conditions, I work closely with each patient to strategically develop a plan for managing their disease. With diet, exercise, mental health guidance, tobacco cessation, education and screenings, we can work together to achieve long term health and wellness. Our clinic provides patients with exceptional healthcare for you and your family from infancy on. Both Internal Medicine and Family Practice physicians are available to make sure you get the right care.