If you have medical insurance, you may be required to select a primary care physician (PCP) from a list of approved doctors within your network. When given the option, choosing a doctor who specializes in internal medicine for your PCP can be an invaluable resource.
You're An Adult
In general, an internist will offer the most comprehensive care for adults and some older children with complicated diseases. If you have children and it is not important for the family to have the same doctor, you should choose an internist for your PCP rather than a family practitioner.
One of the main benefits of choosing an internist is their ability to diagnose a wide array of diseases, even when the disease is uncommon or there are several underlying disease processes. An internist's broad knowledge of multiple organ systems can help them make a tentative diagnosis before you are referred to a specialist.
You Have A Chronic Illness
Although the differences between internal and family medicine are subtle, they can matter more if you have a chronic disease. Internists are more familiar with the way chronic disease affects the entire body and specific organ systems. Furthermore, since the focus of internal medicine is managing patients from adulthood onward, you likely want a doctor who is knowledgeable about how chronic illness affects your body over many years.
It is not uncommon to have multiple chronic diseases or be at risk for developing new chronic diseases in the future, which makes it more important to be under the care of an internist. Internists are familiar with the interrelation between several chronic diseases and can develop a better treatment plan. Managing treatments for multiple illnesses can be complicated since some medications can make additional health problems worse or change the effectiveness of other medications.
Blended General And Specialty Care
Since many medical specialties are branches of internal medicine, you may find a doctor with a dual practice who accepts both internal medicine patients and patients for their subspecialty. For example, the medical specialties of cardiology and endocrinology are among several subspecialties of internal medicine. If you have heart disease or diabetes, and can keep the same doctor for your primary and specialist care, this can improve the quality of care you receive when managing your condition.
Although doctors in both family and internal medicine make excellent PCPs, in many situations, selecting an internist like one from Hightstown Medical Associates offers several advantages. In addition to finding the right doctor for your current and future needs, building an ongoing relationship with your PCP is important for your long-term medical care.Share