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Types of Conditions Treated by Internal Medicine Providers

Posted by Johnson Memorial Health on Oct 11, 2019

Blog-Internist-DiseasesCertain medical conditions require constant attention. Lifestyle and heredity often determine the quality of your health. It often becomes necessary to deal with the changes and challenges of your body over time.

That’s where an Internist can help. According to the American College of Physicians, Internal Medicine combines the analytical examination of laboratory science with a personalized, compassionate approach to adult medicine.

This expertise enables doctors to treat both common illnesses and complex medical conditions as you age. They also specialize in treating long-term chronic illnesses such as Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Internists take a close look at how all the systems in the body work together as a whole because a problem in one area could cause complications in another.

Here are just some common conditions treated by Internists, including those at Johnson Memorial Health:

Diabetes Management

This is a disease marked by high blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels are regulated through the actions of a hormone called insulin. Diabetes occurs when there is too little insulin, resistance to insulin or both. Depending on the type of diabetes, treatment may require daily insulin injections or drugs to increase insulin production, make insulin more effective, or slow absorption of glucose from the gut. Lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, exercise, and dietary changes, may also be important.

Pulmonary Medicine

This is a subspecialty of Internal Medicine that focuses on the diagnosis and management of disorders of the respiratory system, including the lungs, upper airways, thoracic cavity and chest wall. Internists practicing pulmonary medicine are frequently called upon to help diagnose unknown disorders and assist in managing difficult, unusual, or complicated diseases of the respiratory system.  

Critical Care Medicine

Internists trained in critical care medicine work in hospital-based settings, usually in intensive care units. Within Internal Medicine, critical care medicine training is most commonly coupled with a pulmonary medicine fellowship since pulmonologists frequently oversee care of patients in intensive care units. However, other Internal Medicine physicians, such as cardiologists and general internists practicing hospital medicine, may seek training in critical care medicine to facilitate their work with severely ill patients.

Chronic Venous Disease (CVD) Management

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) occurs when the valves in the leg veins are not working properly, causing blood to collect in the veins rather than return to the heart.  This is called stasis. Healthy veins contain valves which open and close to keep the blood moving in the right direction. Problems develop when some of those valves become damaged and stop working. This results in backward flow (“reflux”) of blood in the veins, and a slower drainage of the used blood from your legs. This is called Chronic Venous Disease (CVD).

Wound Care Management

Internists treat patient wounds that have not begun to heal in two weeks or are not completely healed by six weeks. They customized care is tailors to the patient’s needs.

Other specialty services by Internists in general include:

Geriatric medicine
Infectious disease
Sleep disorders

To schedule an appointment with an Internal Medicine provider at Johnson Memorial Health, click here.