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Internists, General Career Video

Description: Physicians who diagnose and provide non-surgical treatment of diseases and injuries of internal organ systems. Provide care mainly for adults who have a wide range of problems associated with the internal organs.

Video Transcript

Many medical doctors specialize in treating a particular illness or part of the body… but internists are general doctors who see adult patients for all their medical needs. They usually act as either primary care providers, or as inpatient doctors known as hospitalists. These doctors are experts in medical conditions that affect the vital organs of the abdomen and chest. But, they also treat conditions that affect other areas of the body such as joints and the brain. Internists who provide primary care... work in outpatient clinics. There, they diagnose and treat common health problems and help patients manage chronic conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure. They prescribe medications and give advice on preventing disease as well, such as which vaccines to get and healthy nutrition options. They also document patients’ test results, examination notes, and medical history. Internists may provide regular care for patients for many years at clinics, or see patients just once in urgent care settings. They are frequently exposed to infectious diseases, and must be able to manage stressful situations treating very sick or dying patients. Becoming an internist requires four years of medical school after college, and three years of residency training. Training includes long hours, night shifts and irregular schedules. General internists may pursue additional training in specialties such as cardiology or gastroenterology.