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Infectious Disease Specialists Print E-mail

Dr. Kennedy Infectious Disease is a sub-speciality of Internal Medicine. An infectious disease specialist is trained for three years in internal medicine (or, in some cases, pediatrics) and then receives 2-3 more years training in infectious disease. ID specialists have expertise in infections of the sinuses, heart, brain, lungs, urinary tract, bowel, bones and pelvic organs. Their extensive training focuses on all types of infections, including those caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Many ID physicians specialize in treating infections which are complications of HIV / AIDS. They are trained in the use of antibiotics and their potential adverse effects. ID specialists have training in immunology (how the body fights infection), epidemiology (how infections spread) and infection control. An ID specialist reviews a patient's medical data, including records, X-rays and laboratory reports, performs a physical examination and also counsel healthy people who plan to travel to countries where there is an increased risk of infection. Laboratory studies are usually necessary and may include blood studies and cultures of wounds or body fluids. They may order blood serum studies for antibodies indicating the presence of unusual or uncommon diseases. Work in the infectious disease specialty is limited to diagnosis and medical treatment. They do not perform surgery. Not everyone who has an infectious disease needs an infectious disease specialist. Many specialties deal with infections, but sometimes special expertise is needed to either diagnose or manage specific infectious diseases. When an infection is potentially serious, or when problems occur with treatment, it may be necessary to consult an infectious diseases specialist. ID specialists can provide special insight into testing with which other doctors may not be familiar. If you are hospitalized for an infection or acquire an infection while hospitalized, ID specialists will usually e consulted and may see you as an outpatient after discharge from the hospital. Although infectious diseases specialists sometimes serve as primary care physicians, in most cases you will still need your regular doctor. You may be asked to return to the ID specialist for a follow-up visit to review test results and to be sure that your infection has been eliminated.

The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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