Internal medicine is a medical specialty that focuses on conditions that affect the internal organs and their systems. It deals with diagnosing and treating diseases, such as heart disease, kidney disease, and diabetes, among others. Internal medicine physicians are trained to treat acute and chronic illnesses in patients of all ages, from newborns to elderly adults.

General practitioners or family doctors have a broad scope of practice that includes everything from preventive care to treating illness. They are often your first stop when you need medical help for yourself or a loved one. To help differentiate between these two types of doctors, you know who best fits your needs when it comes to health care needs.

Internal Medicine

How Is Internal Medicine Different From General Practice?

Internal medicine is a branch of medicine that deals with the diagnosis, treatment, and management of adult diseases. This includes all of the body systems. Internal medicine is also a specialty that focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of adults.

As an internist (or internal medicine specialist), you will examine patients and diagnose illnesses with various tools, including lab tests, imaging studies, and physical exams. You may prescribe medications to treat disease and lifestyle changes like diet or exercise. You can also refer them to a surgeon if they need surgery for their condition.

Where Does Internal Medication Help

  • Internal medicine focuses on the treatment of internal diseases.
  • It includes treating heart diseases, liver diseases, and kidney diseases.
  • Internal medications treat diabetes and hypertension (high blood pressure).

In addition, a doctor specializing in internal medicine can also use these drugs to treat skin diseases affecting the skin’s surface or deeper layers, like eczema or psoriasis.

Why Do Doctors Use Internal Medicines?

Internal medicines are used to treat certain diseases and conditions in the body. They’re usually given by injections or tablets rather than swallowed like other medicines.

Doctors may use internal medicines if you have an infection, such as meningitis or pneumonia, or a problem with your heart and blood vessels (such as angina). Internal medicine can also be used if you have cancer and need treatment to cure it or keep it under control.

Some common types of internal medicine include:

  • Antibiotics 

These stop infections caused by bacteria growing inside the body

  • Chemotherapy 

It is used to treat cancer by killing off cancer cells.

In What Treatments Are Internal Medications Preferred

  • Internal medications are typically preferred for chronic illnesses requiring a lot of care and long-term illnesses.
  • If you have diabetes, for example, your doctor may prescribe insulin injections or pills to help control blood sugar levels. The same is true if you have high blood pressure or heart failure: your doctor may recommend daily medication to keep these conditions under control.

General Practice

How Is Internal Medicine Different From General Practice?

General practice is a field of medicine focusing on health care for people in the community. General practitioners, or GPs, typically see patients with non-urgent medical conditions and are often the first point of contact for those seeking help.

General practitioners must have a broad knowledge of basic and complex diseases and communicate effectively with patients.

In addition to providing physical exams and treatment options, they may refer patients to specialists if their condition is beyond the scope of what they can handle.

Where General Practices Are Used

While general practices are usually used by patients in their homes and at the clinic, they are also used in hospitals. General practitioners who work at a hospital will see patients who need more care than what is available from the nurses or other health professionals.

When it comes to visiting the hospital, general practitioners have a lot of responsibilities that differ from those of an internal medicine doctor. Some of these responsibilities include:

  • Evaluating your condition and determining which tests need to be done
  • Taking samples from your body for testing
  • Treating any illnesses or injuries you have

General Practices Are Used For What Treatments?

General practices are used for common illnesses and infections. If you get the flu, you might go to a general practitioner. If your child has an ear infection, he’ll probably be sent to the same doctor he sees for other illnesses. 

General practitioners are also good places to go if you’ve got something like bronchitis or bronchial asthma. This chronic condition makes breathing difficult due to inflammation of your lungs’ airways (or bronchi).

Suppose there’s something more serious going on with you, though. In that case, chances are good that your GP will refer you elsewhere: another type of doctor or even a hospital department where specialists treat complex conditions like heart disease or cancer.

GPs know what kind of specialist care each patient needs based on their specific symptoms and history.

Which Doctors Prescribe General Treatments

General practitioners prescribe antibiotics and other treatments for minor illnesses. For example, general practice is the best place to go if you have a sore throat or an earache. 

Similarly, suppose your child has a skin or upper respiratory tract infection (the kind that makes you cough). In that case, this is something that a general practitioner can easily treat.

The general practice also sees patients with common health problems such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Still, if these are more serious or atypical, it might be better to see an internist instead. Internists may refer their patients on to specialists if they think they need extra help with diagnosis or treatment.

Difference Between Internal Medications And General Practices

General practice (GP) is a medical specialty that deals with diagnosing, treating, and preventing common diseases. GPs are also responsible for:

  • Prescribing medication.
  • Arranging referrals to other health professionals (specialists or hospital consultants).

GPs provide GP services in their surgeries, as well as GP “outreach” clinics at local hospitals.

Despite some overlap with the roles of general practitioners, internal medicine is a separate branch of medicine that involves diagnosing and treating complex illnesses.

Unlike GPs, who tend to prescribe drugs without necessarily considering any diagnostics test results, internists take a thorough approach to identify the underlying cause(s) behind their patient’s symptoms before initiating any treatment protocol.


As you can see, internal medicine and general practice are two very different fields of medicine. Internal medicine focuses on treating diseases with medications that treat the inside of your body, while general practice is more concerned with treating your symptoms and improving your overall health. Which one is right for you depends on what kind of doctor you want to be.