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Internal Medicine

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by Barton, Jul 10, 2001.

  1. Barton

    Barton Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jun 28, 2001
    Minneapolis, MN
    Hey. This might be a dumb question, but what exactly does internal medicine consist of? Is it primary care? What makes it different than family medicine? Does one specialize within internal medicine, and if so, what are the specialties? Any thoughts?
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  3. drintraining

    drintraining Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 20, 2001
    Check out this link. Has quite a bit of info on IM and its job description. Also, make sure to look at link of sub-specialties, there are quite a few.
    web page
  4. AJM

    AJM SDN Moderator Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Jun 25, 2001
    Internal Medicine is a very broad field, and IM residents have many options available to them as far as primary care vs. hospitalists vs. subspecialists. Internists only treat adults (different than family med), and compared with family med, there are a greater number of internal medicine residents who do not plan on going into primary care.

    General internal medicine itself is considered primary care, but most of the subspecialties you can do from it are not. Also there are an increasing number of general internists who are becoming hospitalists (physicians who only deal with inpatient medicine).

    The subspecialties within IM are quite varied, and they include cardiology, pulmonary, critical care, infectious disease, oncology, hematology, rheumatology, gastroenterology, gerontology, and allergy & immunology. I know there are others I'm forgetting.

    I find internal medicine to be a very exciting field which is very intellectual in nature, and offers a huge range of career options, which are some of the reasons I'm going into it. Most IM residents have some idea of what they want to do in IM before they start their residency, although they don't have to know. Personally, I'm planning on doing a subspecialty -- possibly in pulmonary/critical care or cardiology.

    Here are some helpful links:
  5. Linie

    Linie Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jan 22, 2001
    Baltimore, MD, USA
    I think it's easiest to describe internal medicine by describing what they DON'T do:

    surgery, kids, deliver babies, take care of pregnant women (prenatal care)

    What do they do? If you, as an adult, had a problem with your health, you would go to an internist. If you had a problem with your eyes or your skin, you might self refer to ophtho or derm, but just about everything else gets seen (at least initially) by internists.

    It can be confusing, because people call internal medicine, "medicine". If you ask a doctor what field they are in and they say "medicine", and you don't know any better (like me a few years back), you think "DUH, you're a DOCTOR, of course you do MEDICINE, didn't you go to medical school?" Fortunately I did not say all that out loud though.

    Medicine is awesome! I'm a medicine intern, just started! I love it.
  6. BlueBoy

    BlueBoy Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 6, 2001
    I was hoping that could help my questions about residencies. I posted this in the "residency and retations" section but did not get any reply. This question is partially regarding internal medicine.
    posted July 12, 2001 12:29 AM
    I was curious what the pros and cons of going to med/peds vs. family. From what I could scour fromt he net, it seems that the scope of both practices are similar except that the training in med/peds is more hospital based and it does not include an OB rotation.

    I am not planning to specialized further than med/peds, but it would be nice to have the option to do a subspecialy. Family seems to be a bit limited in that respect. The only subsecialties under family medicine that I've heard about has been geriatrics, adolescent medicine, and sports.

    I was wondering what other people's opinions or impressions on the two specialties.


  7. Asumi

    Asumi Member 7+ Year Member

    Apr 21, 2001
    Is it possible to do MED-PEDS training and have a community based practice (like a group practice) or is MED-PEDS geared only towards the hospital? :confused:
  8. scootad.

    scootad. Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jun 1, 2001
    Is the internship year in Internal Medicine like it was in The House of G-d?

  9. Asumi

    Asumi Member 7+ Year Member

    Apr 21, 2001
    Just trying to get some insight into my previous question?

    Thanks if you know anything.
  10. AJM

    AJM SDN Moderator Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Jun 25, 2001
    I sure hope not! :)
    Actually, a LOT of things have changed since the time that the story in The House of God took place. First of all, there is much more support in Internal Medicine now than what was described in the book. Hospital stays are much shorter, so patients don't stay for months on end. I have yet to see this kind of cynicism in real-live present day interns, although I don't start my internship until next year! ;)

    Also, I recently read somewhere that Internal Medicine has been a leader in the area of reform of residency work hours. The general recommendation is that residents are supposed to be limited to 80 hours/week averaged over a 4-week period, with one day off per week. Many programs are still not complying with this recommendation, but lots of programs are.

    So, bottom line, don't be too discouraged after reading that book. It is outdated in several regards, although some of the issues it deals with are still very real. :)
  11. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic! Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
    hSDN Member

    Well, so far none of my colleagues in the IM department are claiming to have had sex with nurses in the call rooms. But then again, it is only the end of the 2nd week! ;)
  12. AJM

    AJM SDN Moderator Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Jun 25, 2001
    Oh yeah -- I forgot about the whole sex part of the book! :D Well, if it does go on, I sure would be in big trouble with my boyfriend! ;)

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