Difference betwwen internal med specialist and rhumo?

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domanique
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 156
   Posted 9/15/2008 4:34 AM (GMT -7)   
I heard some people mention that they were seeing internal medicine specialists.  I was wondering what the difference is between them and a rhumo?  Is one better then the other.  Which do you try first? 

AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 9/15/2008 5:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Domanique,

Most of us have a Primary Care doctor who is either a General Practitioner or an Internal Medicine Doc. The Internal Med Doc specializes in adult care. This is the doctor we see for general problems (problems that wouldn't be cared for by a specialist like gyno, rheumy, ortho, neurologist.

We add the rheumatologist at the point where we or the primary care doctor suspects arthritis or autoimmune issues such as lupus. So we see the rheumatologist for the lupus related things . . . joint issues, pain, fatigue, etc. . . . until we develop issues that are bad enough to be best handled by another specialist (kidneys-nephrologist, lungs-pulmanology, endocrinologist-thyroid/diabetes/etc, , neurologist-brain/nervous system, cardiologist-heart . . . . and so on ).

The rheumatologist is best one to diagnose and treat the Lupus. But we still need a primary care doctor.

Some of us have several docs. I've had to include, over the years, about three different orthopedic docs (shoulder, wrist, hip), a spine doc, pain management doctor, physical therepy, dermatologist, and of course the gyno. Other here also have nephrologists, cardiologists, pulmanary docs, endocrinoloigsts, and lots more.

Sometimes the primary care doctor is best at figuring out what specialist you need. Your recent issues with pain and shortness of breath are a good example. The primary care doctor should be able to direct you to the right doctor for your issues, if he/she can't address them directly.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


Ginny
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 5514
   Posted 9/15/2008 8:10 AM (GMT -7)   
An internal medicine specialist is what got the ball rolling on my lupus diagnosis.  They are amazingly smart people!!  They know EVERYTHING about the body.  I'm so in awe of my IM doctor!!  She's a genius as far as I'm concerned!!
 
I'd recommend getting a referal to see one. I think you need it.  You have a lot going on, and an IM doctor can very often put the pieces together.  I was being flip flopped back and forth between all these specialists and I was getting nowhere.  Like you.  I finally got in to see my IM and she was able to very quickly put all my symptoms together.  In 5 days I had my diagnosis.  I'm seeing her now for new issues, and I feel very confident that the answers will come quickly.
 
Good luck, and I hope this gives you some newfound direction to take!
 
Ginny
I can do anything through Jesus Christ who strengthens me. I have learned in whatever state I am in,to be content. Phillipians 4:11-13

34 years old. Diagnosed with lupus in 2000. Fibromyalgia, anti-phospholipid syndrome(APS)(stroke),Sjogren's, Raynaud's, seizure disorder-(miraclulously disappeared!), Libman Sach's Endocarditis, vasculitis, sacroiliitis, arthritis (neck) . Prednisone, Imuran, Coumadin, Clobazam, Amitriptyline, didrocal, Cozaar, Tramacet, calcium, Cykolokapron, multi-vitamin, vitamin D, Magnesium, vitamin B6, Acidophilus


AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 9/15/2008 8:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Ginny, I'm SO glad that your doctor figured things out. My Internal Medicine doctor didn't even believe the diagnoses of lupus made by the University Hospital doctors.

It just goes to show you that you have to find a doctor who is will to listen and then piece things together for you. This can take TIME and we have to hang in there till we find the answers.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator

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