What Are the Different Types of Doctors?

Medically Reviewed on 11/10/2021
types of doctors
Here is a list of the different types of doctors, including pediatricians, psychiatrists, neurologists, dermatologists, and endocrinologists.

A doctor is a person who is qualified and trained to treat sick and injured people. Doctors are the main point of contact for any medical problem.

The two types of doctors are:

  1. Primary care doctors
  2. Specialty doctors

Primary care doctors

Primary care doctors provide basic diagnostic and preventive medical care. They treat minor illnesses, answer questions related to health, conduct health checkups, and refer to specialty doctors when necessary.

There are two types of primary care physicians:

  1. Family practice physicians: They are more of a personal physician and provide complete medical care, treating people of all ages or all family members.
  2. Internal medicine physicians: They share many tasks in common with family practice physicians and treat a variety of conditions, which include:
    • Common colds
    • Heart problems
    • Infectious disease

Specialty doctors

Specialty care doctors are specialized in a specific area of medicine. They have proficiency in treating deeper health problems due to their extensive knowledge in that area.

Some of the specialty physicians include:

  • Allergists and immunologists: They can effectively treat allergic diseases and conditions, such as asthma and autoimmune diseases. After earning a medical degree, an allergist should complete additional years of study in the field of allergy and immunology.
  • Anesthesiologists: They administer medicines to numb the body or put the patient to sleep during surgical procedures. They monitor the patient’s vitals during and after the surgery to ensure that they are stable.
  • Cardiologists: They have the expertise to treat conditions of the heart and blood vessels, which include
  • Dermatologists: They focus on various skin diseases and conditions, including
  • Endocrinologists: They are experts in treating various hormonal and metabolic conditions, including
  • Emergency medicine specialists: They specialize in treating people who are critically injured or sick to avoid chances of disability.
  • Gastroenterologists: These doctors focus on treating disorders of the esophagus, stomach, pancreas, intestine, liver, and gall bladder, which include
  • Geriatric medicine specialists: These doctors are generally family practice physicians and care for older adults.
  • Infectious disease specialists: They diagnose and treat various infections, including
  • Internists: They diagnose and perform nonsurgical treatment of diseases and injuries of internal organ systems, such as heart disease or diabetes.
  • Nephrologists: They specialize in treating
  • Neurologists: These doctors treat nervous system disorders of the brain, spinal cord, and nerves, which include
    • Epilepsy
    • Parkinson’s disease
    • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Obstetricians and gynecologists: They focus on women’s health, including pregnancy, childbirth, and reproductive health.
  • Oncologists: They are cancer specialists who perform chemotherapy treatments to treat people with cancer.
  • Ophthalmologists: They are eye doctors who diagnose and treat diseases related to the eyes, as well as prescribe glasses or contact lenses.
  • Orthopedic surgeons: They specialize in treating diseases of bones, tendons, ligaments, tendons, and joints, which might include
  • Otolaryngologists: They treat diseases of the
    • Ears
    • Nose
    • Throat
    • Sinuses
    • Head
    • Neck
    • Respiratory system
  • Pediatricians: They care for newborns, infants, toddlers, children, and even teenagers.
  • Podiatrists: They focus on problems concerning ankles and feet, including
  • Psychiatrists: They are specialists who focus on mental, emotional, or addictive disorders, such as
  • Pulmonologists: These doctors treat issues of the lung, which include
  • Radiologists: They diagnose diseases using X-ray, ultrasound, and other imaging tests.
  • Rheumatologists: They focus on rheumatic diseases that can affect the bones, joints, and muscles, which include
  • Urologists: They focus on conditions of the urinary tract and male reproductive health.

10 types of doctors that are in high demand in the U.S.

  1. Family physicians
  2. Internists
  3. Emergency physicians
  4. Psychiatrists
  5. Obstetricians and gynecologists
  6. Neurologists
  7. Radiologists
  8. Anesthesiologists
  9. Pediatricians
  10. Cardiologists

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Medically Reviewed on 11/10/2021
Image Source: Rob Lewine / Getty Images

Whitbourne K. What Are the Different Types of Doctors? WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/health-insurance/insurance-doctor-types

St. George's University. 10 Types of Physicians in High Demand. https://www.sgu.edu/blog/medical/types-of-physicians-in-demand/