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Family practitioners are primary-care physicians who see patients of all ages, including young babies. Family practitioners manage acute illnesses, such as the flu, and chronic illnesses, such as high blood pressure. Family practitioners provide general health maintenance over the patient’s lifetime and can refer patients to specialists if they are in need of more specialized care. They also provide physicals for adults and children and vaccines for children.
Internal medicine physicians often serve as adults’ primary care physicians. They treat diseases many adults face, both acute, like the flu, and chronic, like high blood pressure. They provide general health maintenance and help guide patients through recommended testing, such as colonoscopies and mammograms. They also often serve as the one point of information for all their patients’ specialists.