Primary care refers to the comprehensive and continued healthcare and treatment of a patient from infancy to adulthood. Commonly, primary care practices are divided into two categories: family medicine and internal medicine. A family medicine physician, as the name suggests, cares for both children and adults in a wide range of conditions and illnesses. While internal medicine focuses specifically on adult health services. Primary care services can vary extensively depending on the diagnosis. These include, but are not limited to:
- Diagnosis of diseases or disorders
- Treatment of acute and chronic illnesses
- Disease prevention
- Health maintenance
- Patient education
Primary care physicians have a large arsenal of tools for diagnosing ailments, illnesses, and disorders. From general tests such as routine blood work and x-ray imaging, to cancer screenings and thyroid testing, the array of assessments available can help to quickly identify issues and create effective treatment plans.
Your Phoenix primary care provider is specialized in treatment methods for a wide variety of ailments and diseases. Common conditions that are managed by primary care physicians are:
Arthritis: Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid
Respiratory issues: Cold, flu, bronchitis, laryngitis, pharyngitis
Diabetes: Type I and Type II
High blood pressure
Allergies: Testing and management
Headaches: Migraines, tension headaches, cluster headaches, etc.
Asthma: adult-onset, allergy-induced, occupational, etc.
Sexually transmitted diseases: Testing and treatment
Thyroid disorders: Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism
Congestive Heart Failure
Sleep disorders: Identification and treatment
Wellness and prevention are a large focus in primary care services. Flu shots, immunizations, wellness exams, and routine physicals are used to help combat and thwart various illnesses. It is extremely important to maintain regular exams and visits to your primary care physician to keep close tabs on your overall health. These exams fall into Well-Child and Well-Adult visits.
Primary care professionals provide important patient education to help the individual best manage his/her health. Healthy lifestyle tips, nutrition counseling, and diabetes education are just a few of the areas in which your doctor can assist. There are also a number of professionals outside of your physician who can provide your primary care services. These include licensed individuals such as nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants who work under the supervision of your doctor. Primary care services allow for the physician and patient to develop an important relationship throughout the course of the patient’s life. The patient and physician act as partners to maintain and promote individual health.