Internal Medicine is an area of medicine that involves the diagnosis and nonsurgical treatment of diseases of the internal organs in adults.
It is sometimes confused with general practice, but differs completely as it is a hospital oriented medical specialty unlike General Practice which is specialty out-patient care dedicated to the patient and the family.
It is therefore by definition a specialty that cares for adult health and one of the major pillars in a hospital environment, especially in the emergency room, out-patient consultations and in-patient facilities.
Internal Medicine is the mother of all nonsurgical pathologies. Internists (not to be confused with interns, who are trainee doctors), are experts in the diagnosis of difficult and complex diseases when they affect various organs or systems, or when the origin of the disease it is not clear.
An example of a typical case that needs to be studied by the Internist is a patient complaining of isolated chest pain, whose origin can be from the Heart (Cardiology) the lungs (Pulmonary) or from the digestive tract (Gastroenterology). Here the role of the Internist is to arrive at a diagnosis and possibly treat or request assistance from one of these other specialties.
It is also from Internal Medicine although not exclusively, that experts of other very important areas of medicine originate, which are fundamental for the functioning of a hospital, such as resuscitation. E.R., Intensive Care Units, specific Medical Specialties; Diabetes, rheumatic diseases, oncology (chemotherapy), and infectious diseases (including AIDS).
Internal Medicine is often called for by other hospital specialties for assistance of hospitalized patients, when there is an imbalance of various systems, when it is necessary to balance several clinical aspects simultaneously.
It is a specialty that requires vast knowledge of the human body and requires constant updating.
In summary and subject the hype of the series, we can say that Internists are "Dr House" in the Hospitals.