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Allergy & Immunology
An allergist-immunologist is trained in evaluation, physical and laboratory diagnosis, and management of disorders involving the immune system. Selected examples of such conditions include asthma, anaphylaxis, rhinitis, eczema, and adverse reactions to drugs, foods, and insect stings as well as immune deficiency diseases (both acquired and congenital), defects in host defense, and problems related to autoimmune disease, organ transplantation or malignancies of the immune system. These specialists can track down which substance or allergen is causing the problem, advise about how to eliminate the cause, and start a treatment plan. As our understanding of the immune system develops, the scope of this specialty is widening.
An anesthesiologist is trained to provide pain relief and maintenance, or restoration, of a stable condition during and immediately following an operation, obstetric, or diagnostic procedure. It is the anesthesiologist's foremost purpose and concern to protect the patient's well-being and safety just prior to, during, and after surgery. Anesthesiologists have many responsibilities: preoperative evaluation of patients to determine conditions that may complicate surgery; management of pain and emotional stress during surgical, obstetrical, and medical procedures; provision of life support under the stress of anesthesia and surgery; immediate postoperative care of the patient; and knowledge of drugs and their interactions with anesthetic agents. Their functions also include long-standing and cancer pain management; management of problems in cardiac and respiratory resuscitation; application of specific methods of inhalation therapy; and emergency clinical management of various fluid, electrolyte, and metabolic disturbances.
This is the best part. Cardiologists are medical doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases or conditions of the heart and blood vessels, such as irregular heart rhythms, high blood pressure, heart failure, or heart attacks. Cardiologists administer tests that show how well a person's heart is working, such as a treadmill test (exercise electrocardiogram). And they perform certain treatment procedures. They can further specialize in interventional cardiology (the use of mechanical treatment methods, such as angioplasty) or electrophysiology (treatments involving the heart's electrical system). Also, they may specialize in treating specific age groups, such as a pediatric cardiologist, who only treats children. Cardiologists can be board-certified through the Board of Internal Medicine, which is recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Pediatric cardiologists are recognized by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Special emphasis is given to disorders that appear in childhood, including but not limited to autism and other developmental disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), mood disorders, anxiety disorders, learning disabilities, mental retardation, drug dependency, and delinquency (conduct disorder). The child and adolescent psychiatrist performs comprehensive diagnostic examinations, integrating physical, genetic, developmental, emotional, cognitive, educational, family, peer, and social findings into a formulation that is shared with the patient, family, and other stakeholders. Treatment, directed by the child and adolescent psychiatrist, includes evidence-based medication management, consultation with other physicians, schools, juvenile courts and social service agencies, and a variety of psychosocial interventions, including individual, group, and family psychotherapies.
The medical and scientific study of cells. Cytology refers to a branch of pathology, the medical specialty that deals with making diagnoses of diseases and conditions through the examination of tissue samples from the body. Cytologic examinations may be performed on body fluids (examples are blood, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid) or on material that is aspirated (drawn out via suction into a syringe) from the body. Cytology also can involve examinations of preparations that are scraped or washed (irrigated with a sterile solution) from specific areas of the body. For example, a common example of diagnostic cytology is the evaluation of cervical smears (referred to as the Papanicolaou test or Pap smear). In order for cytologic evaluation to be carried out, the material to be examined is spread onto glass slides and stained. A pathologist then uses a microscope to examine the individual cells in the sample.
A dermatologist is trained to diagnose and treat pediatric and adult patients with benign and malignant disorders of the skin, mouth, external genitalia, hair and nails, as well as a number of sexually transmitted diseases. The dermatologist has had additional training and experience in the diagnosis and treatment of skin cancers, melanomas, moles, and other tumors of the skin, the management of contact dermatitis, and other allergic and nonallergic skin disorders, and in the recognition of the skin manifestations of systemic (including internal malignancy) and infectious diseases. Dermatologists have special training in dermatopathology--the diagnosis of skin diseases including infectious, immunologic, degenerative, and neoplastic--and in the surgical techniques used in dermatology. The care of the dermatology patient may entail both topical and systemic medical therapeutics and a variety of surgical and cosmetic procedures, including excisions, sclerotherapy, laser surgery, liposuction, hair transplants and tissue augmentation therapies, anti-aging treatments, injectable and implantable soft tissue fillers, correction of acne scarring, chemical peeling, vein therapy, skin cancer treatment, and reconstructive flaps and grafts. In addition, dermatologists have a role in the care of normal skin, skin cancer prevention, and sun protection.
A general practitioner, also called a GP or generalist, is a physician who does not specialize in one particular area of medicine. GPs provide routine health care (e.g., physical examinations, immunizations) and assess and treat many different conditions, including illnesses and injuries. They often have regular, long-term patients and provide ongoing medical care to both male and female patients in all age groups. People who are seeking medical care usually contact a general practitioner first. When a patient develops a serious condition, a general practitioner may refer him or her to a specialist. A specialist is a physician who has additional training and expertise in a specific area of medicine (e.g., urology, cardiology, oncology, neurology). General practitioners often work in private offices or clinics. In many cases, they are assisted by a small staff of nurses and administrators. General practitioners also may be part of a large group practice or a health maintenance organization (HMO).
An internist who concentrates on disorders of the internal (endocrine) glands such as the thyroid and adrenal glands. The principle problems endocrinologists encounter include goiter, thyroid nodules, thyroid dysfunction, diabetes mellitus, hyper- and hypocalcemia, adrenal cortex dysfunction, endocrine hypertension, gonadal disorders, disorders of sodium and water balance, manifestations of pituitary disorders, disorders of bone metabolism, and hyperlipidemia. While not strictly an endocrine disorder, obesity is considered part of the spectrum of endocrinology because it often enters into the differential diagnosis of endocrine disease and is a major element in the management of type 2 diabetes. Prevention focuses on the complications of obesity, diabetes, hyperlipidemias, thyroid disease, and the iatrogenic effects of glucocorticoids. Endocrinologists are called on to treat problems concerning subnormal growth, early or late puberty, excess hair growth, high blood glucose or calcium levels, osteoporosis, pituitary tumors, and reproduction. They provide consultation for postoperative and chronic disease patients who require special nutritional support , and often participate in basic or clinical research.
Forensic science specialists examine and evaluate physical evidence, using chemical, microscopic, instrumental and physical methods of analysis. They may be required to work with blood and other biological fluids, hair, gunshot residue, drugs, fibers, paint and glass. Forensic science specialists also typically are responsible for preparing written reports on their findings, serving as expert witnesses in court hearings and conducting research regarding new technologies, equipment and techniques. Additionally, they might be required to train other forensic science personnel in different methods of evidence analysis.
A gastroenterologist is an internist who specializes in diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the digestive organs including the esophagus, stomach, bowels, liver, pancreas, and gallbladder. This specialist treats conditions such as abdominal pain, ulcers, diarrhea, cancer, and jaundice and performs complex diagnostic and therapeutic procedures using endoscopes to visualize internal organs. Gastroenterology also includes the discipline of hepatology--the diagnosis and treatment of liver and biliary tract diseases. Additional areas of focus include nutrition and nutritional deficiencies as well as prevention and screening, particularly for colorectal cancer. Gastroenterology requires increasingly complex decision-making; mastery of a growing number of endoscopic techniques, both diagnostic and therapeutic; an understanding of the sensitivity, specificity, risk-benefit, and cost-benefit of a broad array of diagnostic techniques and therapeutic options; and knowledge of the increasingly complex science that underlies gastroenterological practice. It is a procedure-intense specialty that requires some manual dexterity and the ability to solve problems analytically.
Hematology is a subspecialty of internal medicine or pathology concerned with the development, function, and diseases of the blood, bone marrow, vascular system, spleen, and lymph glands. A hematologist specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and investigation of disorders of the hematopoietic, hemostatic, and lymphatic systems as well as disorders of the interaction between blood cells and blood vessel walls. Through investigation and treatment of hematologic malignancies (leukemias and lymphomas), hematology also shares areas of interest and activity with medical oncology. Hematologists use the medical history, physical findings, specialized clinical laboratory tests, and evaluation of tissue or cytological specimens to diagnose and treat disorders of red and white blood cells, platelets, and the blood clotting system, as well as benign and malignant disorders of the bone marrow and lymph glands. They use a broad range of approaches to treat these diseases, including blood products and blood derivatives, nutritional supplements, immunosuppressants, chemotherapy and other anti-tumor agents, pain management, drugs that prevent or promote blood clotting, and stem cell therapies (bone marrow/hematopoietic stem cell transplantation). Not only must hematologists have the clinical skills of general internists, they also need a broad knowledge of cell biology, biochemistry, and laboratory techniques.
Neurology involves the treatment of disease or impaired function of the brain, spinal cord, peripheral nerves, muscles, and autonomic nervous system, as well as the blood vessels that relate to these structures. Neurologists treat patients who have a variety of disorders, including headaches, strokes, seizure disorders, multiple sclerosis, dystonia, muscular dystrophy, peripheral nerve disease, learning disorders, traumatic injuries to the nervous system, Parkinson's, Huntington's, and Alzheimer's disease. Some neurologists are also engaged in neurological rehabilitation. Many neurological problems are characterized by pain and can be chronic, debilitating, and difficult to treat. A large portion of the practice of neurology is consultative, but the neurologist may also be the primary physician. The specialty has close links with psychiatry, with which it maintains a combined certification board.
A nuclear medicine specialist employs the properties of radioactive atoms and molecules in the diagnosis and treatment of disease, and in research. Radiation detection and imaging instrument systems are used to detect disease as it changes the function and metabolism of normal cells, tissues, and organs. A wide variety of diseases can be found in this way, usually before the structure of the organ involved by the disease can be seen to be abnormal by any other techniques. Early detection of coronary artery disease (including acute heart attack); early cancer detection and evaluation of the effect of tumor treatment; diagnosis of infection and inflammation anywhere in the body; and early detection of blood clot in the lungs are all possible with these techniques. Unique forms of radioactive molecules can attack and kill cancer cells (e.g., lymphoma, thyroid cancer) or can relieve the severe pain of cancer that has spread to bone. The nuclear medicine specialist has special knowledge in the biologic effects of radiation exposure, the fundamentals of the physical sciences and the principles and operation of radiation detection and imaging instrumentation systems.
Obstetrics and Gynecology
Obstetrics and gynecology is a diversified specialty concerned with the delivery of medical and surgical care to women. This field combines two specialties: obstetrics, which focuses on the care of women before, during, and after childbirth; and gynecology, which involves the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the female reproductive system, breasts, and associated disorders. Relationships with patients are long-term and are often maintained through the postmenopausal stage of a patient's life. Obstetrician-gynecologists (Ob-Gyn) often serve as consultants to other physicians. In many cases, the Ob-Gyn is the primary care physician, with whom female patients have regular contact and obtain medical advice and counseling. The specialty also offers opportunities to practice other skills such as laparoscopic surgery, endocrinology, and preventive medicine.
Oncology is a subspecialty of internal medicine concerned with diagnosing and treating benign and malignant tumors and other forms of cancer. It was originally a part of hematology and, in some training programs, these two disciplines are still taught together. Oncologists typically identify individuals at risk for malignancy and counsel them regarding risk reduction and screening, investigate clinical symptoms and syndromes suggestive of underlying malignancy, undertake the palliative care of patients with solid and hematologic tumors, identify neoplasms with a potential for cure, and manage appropriately. They administer chemotherapy for malignancy and work with surgeons and radiotherapists on other treatments for cancer. They often see patients who are seriously ill and require extensive treatment. Although the specialty is mainly office-based, oncologists provide a significant amount of consultation and primary inpatient care.
Ophthalmology deals with the structure, function, diagnosis, and treatment of the eye and the visual system. This includes problems affecting the eye and its component structures, the eyelids, the orbit, and the visual pathways. Ophthalmologists are medically trained to provide patients with total eye care using medical, surgical, and rehabilitative services. In so doing, an ophthalmologist prescribes vision services, including glasses and contact lenses.
Orthopaedic surgeons are trained in the preservation, investigation, and restoration of the form and function of the extremities, spine, and associated structures by medical, surgical, and physical means. An orthopaedic surgeon is involved with the care of patients whose musculoskeletal problems include congenital deformities, trauma, infections, tumors, metabolic disturbances of the musculoskeletal system, deformities, injuries, and degenerative diseases of the spine, hands, feet, knee, hip, shoulder, and elbow. The orthopaedic surgeon manages special problems, diagnoses the injury or disorder, and establishes the treatment plan using surgery, medication, exercise, and/or physical therapy. They are also concerned with primary and secondary muscular problems and the effects of central or peripheral nervous system lesions of the musculoskeletal system. Orthopaedic surgeons treat patients of all ages, mostly on a short-term basis. Since many of their patients have been involved in accidents, orthopaedic surgeons also assess disability in legal actions. The field has undergone notable improvements in techniques and equipment, such as microsurgery and joint replacements. Their practice may be broad or limited to an area of special interest, such as hand surgery or sports medicine.
An otolaryngologist surgeon provides comprehensive medical and surgical care for patients of all ages with diseases and disorders that affect the ears, nose, throat, the respiratory and upper alimentary systems, and related structures of the head and neck. The specialty encompasses cosmetic facial reconstruction, surgery of benign and malignant tumors of the head and neck, and the diagnosis and management of allergic, sinus, laryngeal, thyroid, and esophageal disorders. With the exception of visual and eye-related disorders (the province of ophthalmologists) and lesions of the brain (managed by neurologists and neurosurgeons), otolaryngologists treat diseases and lesions above the shoulders--the ears, the respiratory and upper alimentary systems, and the head and neck. Specialists are trained in otology, rhinology, laryngology, allergy, head and neck surgery, facial plastic and reconstructive surgery, and bronchoesophagology. They also have an understanding of the communication sciences (audiology and speech/language pathology), endocrinology, and neurology.
Pathology-Anatomic and Clinical
The discipline of pathology forms the basis of every physician's thinking about the patient. Modern pathology applies the latest advances in the biological sciences to traditional morphological methods of studying disease. A consulting specialist, the pathologist is truly the doctor's doctor, with expertise in one or more fields of anatomic pathology and laboratory medicine. A pathologist deals with the causes and nature of disease and contributes to diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment through knowledge gained by the laboratory application of the biologic, chemical, and physical sciences. A pathologist uses information gathered from the microscopic examination of tissue specimens, cells, and body fluids as well as from clinical laboratory tests on body fluids and secretions for the diagnosis, exclusion, and monitoring of disease. Anatomic pathologists usually work in hospitals, investigating the effects of disease on the human body via autopsies and microscopic examination of tissues, cells, and other specimens. Medical laboratory directors are responsible for the sophisticated laboratory tests on samples of tissues or fluids and the quality and accuracy of the tests. The practice of pathology is most often conducted in community hospitals or in academic medical centers, where patient care, diagnostic services, and research go hand in hand. Creation of new knowledge is the lifeblood of pathology and many academic pathologists devote significant time in their career to research.
Pediatric Surgery, General Surgery
Pediatric surgery focuses on providing surgical care for all problems or conditions affecting children that require surgical intervention. Pediatric surgeons are involved with diagnosis, preoperative, operative, and postoperative management of surgical problems in children, and they operate on children whose development ranges from the newborn stage through the teenage years. They cooperate with those physicians involved in a child's medical care--neonatologists, pediatricians, and family physicians--to determine whether surgery is the best option for the child.
Pediatrics is primarily concerned with the physical, emotional, and social health of children from birth to young adulthood. Concerned with more than just the physical well-being, pediatricians are involved with the prevention, early detection, and management of behavioral, developmental, and functional social problems that affect their patients. Depending on the patient's age, the measurements associated with these parameters can be quite different. A pediatrician deals with biological, social, and environmental influences on the developing child as well as with the impact of disease or dysfunction on development. The pediatrician also interacts with parents or guardians to define the health status of patients and to educate and provide anticipatory guidance about the child's normal health and growth. Pediatricians can be active at the community level by helping to prevent or solve problems in child health care and be a public advocate for children's causes. Pediatricians work to reduce infant and child morbidity and mortality, control infectious disease, foster healthy lifestyles, and the day-to-day difficulties of children and adolescents with acute and/or chronic conditions.
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Physical medicine and rehabilitation, also referred to as rehabilitation medicine, is the medical specialty concerned with diagnosing, evaluating, and treating patients with physical disabilities. These disabilities may arise from conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system such as birth defects, neck and back pain, sports injuries, or other painful conditions affecting the limbs, for example carpal tunnel syndrome. Alternatively, the disabilities may result from neurological trauma or disease such as broken hips, spinal cord injury, head injury, or stroke. A physician certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation is often called a physiatrist. Physiatrists often coordinate the services of an interdisciplinary rehabilitation team that may include neurologists, psychiatrists and orthopaedic surgeons as well as allied health care professionals. The physiatrist takes a holistic approach to patient diagnosis by considering the physical and psychological aspects of a patient's condition. A high degree of patient contact and long-term care are common in this field. Physiatrists use medical history, physical examination, x-rays and other imaging techniques, laboratory studies, and other diagnostic tools in patient management. The primary goal of the physiatrist is to achieve maximal restoration of physical, psychological, social, and vocational function through comprehensive rehabilitation. The physiatrist not only treats the person with medications but also treats patients with modalities such as heat, cold, massage, traction, electrical stimulation and biofeedback, as well as selective types of therapeutic exercises. Pain management is often an important part of the physiatrist's role. For diagnosis and evaluation, a physiatrist may include the techniques of electromyography to supplement the standard history, physical, X-ray, and laboratory examinations. The physiatrist has expertise in the appropriate use of therapeutic exercise, prosthetics (artificial limbs), orthotics, and mechanical and electrical devices.
A plastic surgeon deals with the repair, reconstruction, or replacement of physical defects of form or function involving the skin, musculoskeletal system, craniomaxillofacial structures, hand, extremities, breast and trunk, and external genitalia or cosmetic enhancement of these areas of the body. Cosmetic surgery is an essential component of plastic surgery. The plastic surgeon uses cosmetic surgical principles to both improve overall appearances and to optimize the outcome of reconstructive procedures as well.Special knowledge and skill in the design and surgery of grafts, flaps, and free tissue transfer and replantation is necessary. Competence in the management of complex wounds, the use of implantable materials, and in tumor surgery is required. Plastic surgeons have been prominent in the development of innovative techniques such as microvascular and craniomaxillofacial surgery, liposuction, and tissue transfer. Anatomy, physiology, pathology, and other basic sciences are fundamental to the specialty. Competency in plastic surgery implies an amalgam of basic medical and surgical knowledge, operative judgment, technical expertise, ethical behavior, and interpersonal skills to achieve problem resolution and patient satisfaction. Plastic surgeons also need to hone their ability to think in three dimensions, as well as have good aesthetic sense, creativity, and appreciation for detail. Subspecialty certifications include craniofacial surgery and surgery of the hand.
A psychiatrist specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of mental, behavioral, addictive, and emotional disorders such as schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, substance-related disorders, sexual and gender identity disorders, and adjustment disorders. They understand the biological, psychological, and social components of illness. Most psychiatrists use some form of discussion (individual or group therapy, psychoanalysis, or behavior modification) to evaluate and treat problems, in addition to using pharmacological treatments. Psychiatrists generally use a holistic approach, since every aspect of humans affects their psychology. They work with individuals and families who are coping with stress, crises, or other problems. They need to use their entire base of knowledge and values when assisting and treating their patients.
Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine, Internal Medicine
Pulmonary/critical care medicine is a broad subspecialty of internal medicine that includes the diagnosis and management of disorders of the lungs, upper airways, thoracic cavity, and chest wall as well as the management of patients in intensive care units. The pulmonary specialist has expertise in neoplastic, inflammatory, and infectious disorders of the lung parenchyma, pleura, and airways; pulmonary vascular disease and its effect on the cardiovascular system; and detection and prevention of occupational and environmental causes of lung disease. Other specialized areas include respiratory failure and sleep-disordered breathing. Critical care physicians generally work in the intensive care units of hospitals and focus on critical illnesses and conditions (e.g., acute and chronic pulmonary disorders, trauma, and heart attacks). Most are internists specializing in pulmonary medicine and manage mechanical ventilators, place pulmonary artery catheters, and perform bronchoscopies; however, some intensivists specialize in anesthesiology, pediatrics, or surgery. The specialty spans the various phases of treatment, from the ambulance to the emergency room, surgical suite, and intensive and cardiac care units. Critical care physicians must be familiar with the surgical and medical problems that put patients in the intensive care unit. They must also know the cardiovascular, fluid, and respiratory management that is required to maintain critically ill patients. The care of critically ill patients raises many complicated ethical and social issues, and the intensivist must be competent in such areas such as end-of-life decisions, advance directives, estimating prognosis, and counseling of patients and their families. Pulmonologists treat a diverse clinical population and can work in private practices or in various hospital settings, including the respiratory therapy department, the pulmonary function laboratory, or the intensive care unit. An in-depth knowledge of internal medicine is useful to these physicians because pulmonary medicine touches upon other subspecialties.
Radiology is a medical specialty in which a variety of radiologic methodologies are used to diagnose and treat diseases. Diagnostic radiology encompasses a variety of diagnostic and image guided therapeutic techniques, including all aspects of radiological diagnosis (nuclear radiology, diagnostic ultrasound, magnetic resonance, computed tomography, interventional procedures, and the use of other forms of radiant energy). Physicians studying diagnostic radiology are primarily hospital based and can specialize in a number of areas, including: vascular interventional; neuroimaging and intervention; abdominal imaging and intervention; nuclear medicine; chest and cardiac imaging; pediatric imaging; and mammography. The radiologist's role has grown not only through great improvements in diagnosis, but also through the technological developments that permit numerous interventional radiology procedures. A diagnostic radiologist is the eye of medicine, helping the primary care physician diagnose and treat diseases.
Rheumatology, Internal Medicine
Rheumatology is a subspecialty of internal medicine dealing with diseases of joints, muscles, bones, and tendons. Rheumatic diseases encompass more than 100 discrete disorders, some with multisystem involvement, and many with a wide variety of clinical manifestations and outcomes. The rheumatologist diagnoses and treats both chronic and acute conditions, including arthritis, systemic rheumatic diseases, back pain, gout, lupus, bursitis, muscle strains, collagen and other soft-tissue diseases, and athletic injuries. Because these diseases are often difficult to diagnose and treat, the rheumatologist's orientation is toward cognitive skills. It is important for rheumatologists to have a good background in biochemistry, immunology, radiology, internal medicine, neurology, orthopaedics, psychiatry, and rehabilitative medicine.
A thoracic surgeon provides the operative, perioperative care, and critical care of patients with pathologic conditions within the chest. Included is the surgical care of coronary artery disease, cancers of the lung, esophagus and chest wall, abnormalities of the trachea, abnormalities of the great vessels and heart valves, congenital anomalies, tumors of the mediastinum, and diseases of the diaphragm. The management of the airway and injuries of the chest is within the scope of the specialty. A general thoracic surgeon treats emphysema, swallowing problems, and gastroesophageal reflux. A congenital heart surgeon performs surgical corrections of heart defects and furnishes cardiovascular support to infants and children. Any of these subspecialists may perform heart, lung, and combined heart-lung transplantations.Thoracic surgeons have the knowledge, experience, and technical skills to accurately diagnose, operate upon safely, and effectively manage patients with thoracic diseases of the chest. This requires substantial knowledge of cardiorespiratory physiology and oncology, as well as capability in the use of heart assist devices, management of abnormal heart rhythms and drainage of the chest cavity, respiratory support systems, endoscopy, and invasive and noninvasive diagnostic techniques.
Urology focuses on the medical and surgical treatment of the male genitourinary system, female urinary tract, and the adrenal gland. Urologists treat patients with kidney, ureter, bladder, prostate, urethra, and male genital structure disorders and injuries. They often coordinate care with nephrologists for patients with kidney disease and may perform kidney transplantations. Urologists may also investigate and treat infertility and male sexual dysfunction. Diagnostic procedures are very important for urologists. They use endoscopic, percutaneous, and open surgery to treat congenital and acquired disorders of the reproductive and urinary systems and related structures. These specialists see male and female patients of all ages and work in both hospital and clinic settings. Excellent surgical skills, manual dexterity, and good hand-eye coordination are important to this specialty.
Vascular Surgery, General Surgery
Vascular surgery is a subspecialty within general surgery that addresses the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the vascular tree, including arteries, veins, and lymphatic vessels, exclusive of those within the cranial cavity and the heart. The principle diseases treated involve those affecting the carotid arteries, the aorta, and those supplying the blood supply to the lower extremities, the kidneys, and the abdominal viscera. Common procedures performed include carotid endarterectomy, repair of abdominal aortic aneurysm, and revascularization of the lower extremities. Specialists in this discipline are also experts in performing and interpreting diagnostic studies including ultrasound and angiography. The subspecialty emphasizes minimally invasive treatment, including endovascular treatment for abdominal aortic aneurysm and for relief of obstruction of blood flow to organs and tissues by means of angioplasty and deployment of intravascular stents
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Endodontics is the branch of dentistry which is concerned with the morphology, physiology and pathology of the human dental pulp and periradicular tissues. Its study and practice encompass the basic and clinical sciences including biology of the normal pulp, the etiology, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of diseases and injuries of the pulp and associated periradicular conditions.
Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology
Oral pathology is the specialty of dentistry and discipline of pathology that deals with the nature, identification, and management of diseases affecting the oral and maxillofacial regions. It is a science that investigates the causes, processes, and effects of these diseases. The practice of oral pathology includes research and diagnosis of diseases using clinical, radiographic, microscopic, biochemical, or other examinations.
Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology
Oral and maxillofacial radiology is the specialty of dentistry and discipline of radiology concerned with the production and interpretation of images and data produced by all modalities of radiant energy that are used for the diagnosis and management of diseases, disorders and conditions of the oral and maxillofacial region.
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Oral and maxillofacial surgery is the specialty of dentistry which includes the diagnosis, surgical and adjunctive treatment of diseases, injuries and defects involving both the functional and esthetic aspects of the hard and soft tissues of the oral and maxillofacial region.
Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
Orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics is the dental specialty that includes the diagnosis, prevention, interception, and correction of malocclusion, as well as neuromuscular and skeletal abnormalities of the developing or mature orofacial structures.
Pediatric Dentistry is an age-defined specialty that provides both primary and comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health care needs.
Periodontics is that specialty of dentistry which encompasses the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the supporting and surrounding tissues of the teeth or their substitutes and the maintenance of the health, function and esthetics of these structures and tissues.
Prosthodontics is the dental specialty pertaining to the diagnosis, treatment planning, rehabilitation and maintenance of the oral function, comfort, appearance and health of patients with clinical conditions associated with missing or deficient teeth and/or oral and maxillofacial tissues using biocompatible substitutes.
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Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat neuromusculoskeletal complaints, including but not limited to back pain, neck pain, pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches. Doctors of Chiropractic – often referred to as chiropractors or chiropractic physicians – practice a drug-free, hands-on approach to health care that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment. Chiropractors have broad diagnostic skills and are also trained to recommend therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises, as well as to provide nutritional, dietary and lifestyle counseling.
Acupuncture is one of the main forms of treatment in traditional Chinese medicine. It involves the use of sharp, thin needles that are inserted in the body at very specific points. This process is believed to adjust and alter the body's energy flow into healthier patterns, and is used to treat a wide variety of illnesses and health conditions. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends acupuncture as an effective treatment for over forty medical problems, including allergies, respiratory conditions, gastrointestinal disorders, gynecological problems, nervous conditions, and disorders of the eyes, nose and throat, and childhood illnesses, among others. Acupuncture has been used in the treatment of alcoholism and substance abuse. It is an effective and low-cost treatment for headaches and chronic pain, associated with problems like back injuries and arthritis. It has also been used to supplement invasive Western treatments like chemotherapy and surgery. Acupuncture is generally most effective when used as prevention or before a health condition becomes acute, but it has been used to help patients suffering from cancer and AIDS. Acupuncture is limited in treating conditions or traumas that require surgery or emergency care (such as for broken bones).
Alternative therapists focus on the connection between the structural, biochemical and emotional components of a patient's body in order to treat a range of conditions. They may analyse a patient's diet and lifestyle and develop personalised plans, including prescribed natural medicines and herbal treatments. They also manually stimulate muscles and bones to correct specific bodily ailments, and use a range of other organic techniques to stimulate the body's defence and immune systems
Bioenergy is renewable energy made available from materials derived from biological sources. Biomass is any organic material which has stored sunlight in the form of chemical energy. As a fuel it may include wood, wood waste, straw, manure, sugarcane, and many other byproducts from a variety of agricultural processes. By 2010, there was 35 GW (47,000,000 hp) of globally installed bioenergy capacity for electricity generation, of which 7 GW (9,400,000 hp) was in the United States.In its most narrow sense it is a synonym to biofuel, which is fuel derived from biological sources. In its broader sense it includes biomass, the biological material used as a biofuel, as well as the social, economic, scientific and technical fields associated with using biological sources for energy. This is a common misconception, as bioenergy is the energy extracted from the biomass, as the biomass is the fuel and the bioenergy is the energy contained in the fuel
Clinical sexologists, or sex therapists, are mental health professionals who provide counseling services to individuals and couples. Their training is rooted in traditional psychological principles and is supplemented with coursework in human sexuality. Sex therapists provide comprehensive psychotherapy services. Sexologists will complete an intake and evaluation of the individual or couple, and based on the information gleaned in the initial meeting, the sexologist develops a treatment plan with direct input from the client(s). Therapists may recommend reading material or videos to clients or assign communication exercises when counseling couples.
Dietitians and Nutritionists
Dietitians and nutritionists are experts in food and nutrition. They advise people on what to eat in order to lead a healthy lifestyle or achieve a specific health-related goal. Dietitians and nutritionists evaluate the health of their clients. Based on their findings, dietitians and nutritionists advise clients on which foods to eat—and those foods to avoid—to improve their health. Some dietitians and nutritionists provide customized information for specific individuals. For example, a dietitian or nutritionist might teach a client with high blood pressure how to use less salt when preparing meals. Others work with groups of people who have similar needs. For example, a dietitian or nutritionist might plan a diet with limited fat and sugar to help patients lose weight. They may work with other healthcare professionals to coordinate patient care.
Health and Fitness
A number of career paths exist within the health and fitness management field, including athletic trainer, fitness worker and physical therapist. The general goal of health and fitness professionals is to help individuals or groups improve or maintain physical wellness. These specialized professionals work in an extensive range of private and public settings, including hospitals, schools, gyms, fitness centers and the military.
To answer the question “what is herbalism”, you should know that Herbal medicine is, in and of itself, a way to stimulate and restore the body’s natural healing capacity through the use of plants. Although acute symptoms can be resolved quickly and effectively using herbs, the typical goal is not to alleviate a specific symptom, but to stimulate the body’s natural healing capacity to address the root or underlying cause of the health issue. Herbs are used to restore and maintain three important bodily functions: digestion and assimilation, sleep, and elimination. When the body is performing these three functions with ease, it is better able to prevent disease and illness and to repair and heal any damage that has already occurred.
Holistic healing practitioners include alternative medicine practitioners who address disease as an imbalance in the physical, emotional, spiritual or environmental components of a person's life. The practice of holistic healing involves treating the causes of illness rather than alleviating symptoms, according to the American Holistic Medicine Association. Some holistic healing practitioners are physicians who blend conventional and alternative medicine practices.
Homeopathy, or homeopathic medicine, is a medical philosophy and practice based on the idea that the body has the ability to heal itself. Homeopathy is based on the idea that "like cures like." That is, if a substance causes a symptom in a healthy person, giving the person a very small amount of the same substance may cure the illness. In theory, a homeopathic dose enhances the body's normal healing and self-regulatory processes. A homeopathic health practitioner (homeopath) uses pills or liquid mixtures (solutions) containing only a little of an active ingredient (usually a plant or mineral) for treatment of disease. These are known as highly diluted or "potentiated" substances. There is some evidence to show that homeopathic medicines may have helpful effects.
Kinisiologists - Kinesiotherapists
Kinesiotherapist a health care professional who, under the direction of a physician, treats the effects of disease, injury, and congenital disorders through the use of rehabilitative exercise and education alone. Kinesiotherapists work with those who need rehabilitation with movement and strength. They put together exercise programs to help individuals restore mobility. Patients often see a Kinesiotherapist as part of a prescription from a licensed physician. Kinesiotherapists work with physicians to develop the best plans and evaluation tools to administer personalized physical therapy plans for each patient. They also administer tests to measure the musculoskeletal, psychosocial, ergonomic or neurological condition of a patient. From these tests, a goal-specific treatment plan will be identified.
The daily duties of a Kinesiotherapist will depend on the type of patients. Typical treatments provided by a Kinesiotherapist may include: geriatric rehabilitation, aquatic therapy, prosthetic training or rehabilitation and even driver training. They work with clients to develop exercise programs and adapted fitness programs specific to their movement needs. A Kinesiotherapist not only provides physical exercises for their patients, but also education, instruction and demonstrations. These professionals assess the progress of each patient, determining when, and if, it is appropriate to end their prescribed therapy sessions.
Naturopathic Nutrition stresses the use of whole and organic foods as medicine – an integral concept of healing in many indigenous societies. Today, we see that a return to chemical-free foods, along with other dietary measures, is an effective answer to many health complaints and common conditions.
A nursing home, care home or rest home provides a type of residential care. It is a place of residence for people who require continual nursing care and have significant difficulty coping with the required activities of daily living. Nursing aides and skilled nurses are usually available 24 hours a day. Nursing homes, or skilled nursing home care facilities, provide round-the-clock nursing care and significant assistance with the activities of daily life. Nursing homes have nursing staff on duty 24 hours a day to help individuals meet their daily physical, social and psychological needs.
Occupational therapy is a health profession whose goal is to help people achieve independence, meaning and satisfaction in all aspects of their lives. • Apply their specific knowledge to enable people to engage in activities of daily living that have personal meaning and value. • Develop, improve, sustain, or restore independence to any person who has an injury, illness, disability or psychological dysfunction. • Consult with the person and the family or caregivers and, through evaluation and treatment, promote the client's capacity to participate in satisfying daily activities. • Address by intervention the person's capacity to perform, the activity being performed, or the environment in which it is performed.
Osteopathy is a way of detecting, treating and preventing health problems by moving, stretching and massaging a person's muscles and joints. Osteopathy is based on the principle that the wellbeing of an individual depends on their bones, muscles, ligaments and connective tissue functioning smoothly together. Osteopaths use physical manipulation, stretching and massage, with the aim of increasing the mobility of joints, relieving muscle tension, enhancing the blood supply to tissues, helping the body to heal. They use a range of techniques, but don't use drugs or surgery.
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R), also known as rehabilitation medicine, or physical and rehabilitation medicine (PRM), is a branch of medicine that aims to enhance and restore functional ability and quality of life to those with physical impairments or disabilities. A physician having completed training in this field is referred to as a physiatrist. Physiatrists specialize in restoring optimal function to people with injuries to the muscles, bones, ligaments, or nervous system. In the hospital setting, physiatrists commonly treat patients who have had an amputation, spinal cord injury, stroke, traumatic brain injury, and other debilitating injuries. In treating these patients, physiatrists lead an interdisciplinary team of physical, occupational, recreational and speech therapists, nurses, psychologists, and social workers. In outpatient settings, physiatrists also treat patients with muscle and joint injuries, pain syndromes, non-healing wounds, and other disabling conditions. Physiatrists are trained to perform intramuscular and interarticular injections as well as nerve conduction studies.
Physical therapy or physiotherapy (often abbreviated to PT) is a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialty that remediates impairments and promotes mobility, function, and quality of life through examination, diagnosis, prognosis, and physical intervention (therapy using mechanical force and movements). It is carried out by physical therapists (known as physiotherapists in most countries). Physical therapy (or Physiotherapy) involves the illnesses, or injuries that limit a person's abilities to move and perform functional activities as well as they would like in their daily lives. PTs use an individual's history and physical examination to arrive at a diagnosis and establish a management plan and, when necessary, incorporate the results of laboratory and imaging studies like X-rays, CT-scan, or MRI findings.
A podiatrist is a doctor of podiatric medicine (DPM), also known as a podiatric physician or surgeon. Podiatrists diagnose and treat conditions of the foot, ankle, and related structures of the leg. Podiatrists are the most qualified doctors to care for your feet. They complete four years of training in a podiatric medical school and three years of hospital residency training. This training is similar to that of other doctors. Podiatrists can specialize in many fields, including surgery, sports medicine, wound care, pediatrics (children), and diabetic care.
Reflexologists - Aromatheapists
Reflexology is an alternative medicine involving application of pressure to the feet and hands with specific thumb, finger, and hand techniques without the use of oil or lotion. It is based on a system of zones and reflex areas that purportedly reflect an image of the body on the feet and hands, with the premise that such work effects a physical change to the body. Aromatherapy uses plant materials and aromatic plant oils, including essential oils, and other aroma compounds for the purpose of altering one's mood, cognitive, psychological or physical well-being. It can be offered as a complementary therapy or, more controversially, as form of alternative medicine. Complementary therapy can be offered alongside standard treatment, with alternative medicine offered instead of conventional, evidence-based treatments.