The 24 branches of medicine (and how they try to cure patients)

Medicine is one of the most important scientific disciplines, Since its evolution and practical application are fundamental to maintain our state of health.

In addition to that, it is also one of the largest number of branches, specializations and subspecialties, with currently around fifty. And that is why in this article we will make a brief mention of some of the most important through a summary of the branches of medicine.

    Types and branches of medicine

    Medicine has, as we have indicated, a vast science, with about half a hundred branches and official specialties. However, and although we are actually talking about the same science, it is possible to make different classifications and typologies of this type of science.

    Then we will do a little separation of medicine into several types of basic specializations.

    However, it should be borne in mind that there are a large number of professions in the health field, without being medical. The most obvious examples are nurses, assistants, psychologists or pharmacists. That is why we will not see them among the following branches or types of drugs.

    1. Clinic

    Clinically-centered medicine is what pops into the collective imagination when we talk about this science. It is the type of medicine in which the professional is in direct contact with the patient, Diagnoses and proposes and implements treatment. It includes most of the specializations and is usually the basis from which to start shifting to other types of professionals when their direct treatment is not possible.

    2. Surgical

    Surgical medicine is that which is mainly devoted to the treatment of a previously diagnosed problem, generally applying an invasive methodology in which professionals work directly by modifying the body, removing or removing problematic parts or placing devices that can improve its functioning.

    3. Medical-surgical

    We could understand this type of medicine as a mixture of the two above, In which surgical and clinical procedures are used. This is the case with certain well-known specialties, such as ophthalmology.

    4. Laboratories

    In this category we can find all the branches that do not focus on the direct treatment of the patient, but they work from analysis or samples of elements such as blood, urine, feces, sexual fluids, secretions or biopsies, or diagnostic tests such as MRIs, plaques or CT scans. Although we don’t usually think of them when we talk about doctors, without their service it would not be possible to diagnose or treat many problems.

    5. Forensic medicine

    Usually, when we talk about medicine, we think of that which is dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of diseases in living patients, but the truth is that there is also a type of medicine for the purpose of evaluating the existence of injuries resulting from criminal activity. . o investigate the causes of a person’s death.

    6. Occupational medicine

    What is occupational medicine is dedicated to the analysis and treatment of illnesses and injuries that can occur in the workplace.

    7. Preventive medicine

    This type of medication, although generally used as part of the clinic’s own process, is the one that specializes in treating a current situation but trying to prevent the onset of a disease, To be able to detect it as early as possible so that it does not become a serious problem or that in the case of an already present disease to prevent it from worsening or reappearing.

    8. Sports medicine

    The type of medicine dedicated to the field of sportIt usually treats muscle and bone problems, as well as ligaments and tendons. They can also deal with other problems and perform prevention tasks.

    9. Integrative medicine

    A type of medicine that it aims to unite the knowledge of scientific medicine and that of alternative and natural therapies, Seeking in its practice an integration of the two types of knowledge in medical practice.

    10. Complementary medicine

    Complementary medicine is understood as a type of medicine in which they are used alongside the own and usual methodologies of medicine as well as other traditional practices which aim to serve as a complement and not a substitute for the former.

    The 24 branches or medical specializations

    In the previous types of medicine we can find specializations that focus on different aspects such as the area of ​​the body they are focusing their studies on or the age at which they are focusing.

    While there are many more, we show you four of them below so you can get a feel for their great variability.

    1. General and family medicine

    General and family medicine is the basic branch of medicine, which does not specialize in a particular sector or part of the body, but has general knowledge of most areas and only responds to health problems the most general. This is usually the doctor we see first, if necessary you can refer a specialist.

    2. Pediatrics

    Pediatrics is one of the branches or types of medicine that generally receives the most importance, as it deals with the health problems of one of the most vulnerable age groups: childhood. This is a special specialty, because in addition to the fact that children need a more special type of treatment, the important role of the patient’s parents must be taken into account both in obtaining information and in making any decision and the possible loss of information resulting therefrom. difficulty expressing the minor’s type of discomfort.

    Within it, moreover, there are several possible sub-specializations.

    3. Cardiology

    Cardiology is probably one of the most well-known medical specialties, being the sub-discipline responsible for working and studying the cardiovascular system, in particular the heart. From arrhythmias to heart attacks, congenital problems or heart disease, these are some of its areas of application. In some cases, it can be linked to another specialty, cardiovascular surgery.

    4. Pulmonology

    It is the branch of medicine that works with typical problems of the respiratory system, especially the lungs. Examples of typical problems they may be related to are cystic fibrosis or COPD.

    5. Gynecology and obstetrics

    Gynecology is the medical specialty focused on the problems and health of the female reproductive system, both genital and breast.

    As for obstetrics, it is dedicated to the study and maintenance of health during pregnancy and childbirth, as well as postpartum. Her job is with both mother and child.

    6. Otorhinolaryngology

    Otolaryngology is the study of the auditory system, larynx and pharynx, working on issues that can range from infections to hearing loss.

    7. Urology

    Urology is the branch of medicine that works and studies with the male reproductive and genitourinary system, treating problems that may cover areas such as the testes, penis, adrenal glands, or peritoneum. It is sometimes confused with proctology.

    8. Endocrinology

    The endocrine system is an important plaque in our body although it is generally undervalued. It is this hormonal system that is the subject of studies in endocrinology, which can treat hormonal problems, growth, thyroid or diabetes.

    9. Dermatology

    The skin and its problems and diseases are the main object of study in dermatology, treating the problems related to pustules, cysts, burns, freckles, abscesses, eczema or even melanomas.

    10. Traumatology

    Trauma is the branch of medicine that focuses on the effects of bruises and strokes, usually with fractures or dislocations. It is frequently associated with physiotherapy and rehabilitation, as well as surgery.

    11. Oncology

    This branch of medicine deals with one of the types of problems that most people are concerned about: cancer.

    12. Geriatrics

    A specialty which, instead of a disease, focuses on the usual problems of a certain age group. In this case, his performance is focused on the elderly, working with common health problems or even dementia.

    13. Dentistry

    Dentures, gums and the masticatory system in general are the subject of studies in dentistry.

    14. Gastroenterology

    Gastroenterologists are specialists in digestive problems, their action being centered on gastric and intestinal problems.

    15. Nephrology

    This branch of medicine studies and works with all problems related to the kidneys and their functioning.

    16. Infectology

    Although this specialty is not one of the best known to the general population, it is responsible for the study of infectious diseases, whether viral or bacterial.

    17. Toxicology

    This branch of medicine is responsible for studying and working with all cases in which some type of intoxication has occurred, whether it is consumption of food or drugs or contact with a toxicant.

    19. Hematology

    A type of medical specialty focused on problems related to blood.

    20. Ophthalmology

    The branch of medicine which studies the functioning and the disorders and diseases related to the visual organs: the eyes.

    21. Radiology

    One of the specialties least suited to the normal functioning of what most consider a physician to be, radiology is the study and performance of diagnostic tests with techniques using some type of rooting.

    22. Proctology

    Branch or type of drug responsible for working and analyzing all problems related to organs related to excretion: the colon, anus and rectum.

    23. Rheumatology

    This branch of medicine is responsible for the study, diagnosis and treatment of problems related to joints and muscles.

    24. Immunology

    As the name of this specialty suggests to us, we are faced with the branch of medicine focused on the study of the immune system and the problems and diseases it may have, dealing with issues such as HIV infection. or lupus.

    Other types of medication

    All the branches mentioned above are specialties of medicine that follow the scientific method and have been shown to be effective in treating their problems through various studies.

    However, there are other types of medicine that generally do not benefit from scientific evidence and are generally guided by spirituality or tradition. We are talking about traditional medicine and alternative medicine, which are frequented by a large number of people and enjoy a certain popularity despite the fact that there are hardly any studies on its effectiveness and the few that exist in general. are contradictory or do not prove to be more effective. than the placebo.

    Bibliographical references:

    • Barton, A .; Mulley, G. (2003). History of the development of geriatric medicine in the United Kingdom. Postgrad Med J.79 (930): pages 229 to 234
    • Boyd, K. (2016). Sub-specialists in ophthalmology. American Academy of Ophthalmology.
    • Laín Entralgo, P. (1978, reprint 2006). History of medicine. Barcelona: Elsevier Masson.
    • López Piñero, JM (2000). Brief history of medicine. Madrid, Alliance.
    • Lynch, CD; O’Sullivan, VR; McGillycuddy, CT (2006). Pierre Fauchard: the father of modern dentistry. British dental journal. 201 (12): 779–81.
    • Sastri, V. (2013). Plastics in medical devices: properties, requirements and applications. Elsevier.

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