The term may sound different to those who do not know much about medicine. Yet, it is quite common as it is often referred to as ‘Western’ and ‘Modern’ medicine. Allopathic medicine is also known as conventional medicine. It differs widely from homeopathic medicine.
But what does Allopathic Medicine mean? In all honesty, it is the kind of medicine most physicians and other healthcare professionals rely on evidence-based medicine to treat all kinds of symptoms, diseases, and medical conditions.
Are allopathic doctors licensed, physicians?
In all honesty, yes they have licensed physicians who have the chance to focus on developing a certain medical specialty or focusing on research and teaching at medical schools. These physicians focus on both acute care and prevention for helping promote good health among those affected by illness and disease.
In short, allopathic medicine is the medical practice most modern hospitals and clinics (as well as other healthcare institutions) around the world use. Due to this reason, the most common synonym for this is conventional and western medicine. It is also referred to as mainstream medicine, orthodox medicine, or biomedicine.
The origins of Allopathic Medicine and Samuel Hahnemann – an overview
Credit goes to 19th-century German physician Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann for coining the term ‘allopathy.’ It was first introduced to make a stark distinction between conventional medical practice (allopathy) and alternative medical practice (homeopathy).
The term ‘Allopathy’ has since been formally defined as the treatment of diseases by remedies producing effects standing as opposed to the symptoms. Allopathy’s neologism comes from the following words of Greek:
- Allos (other).
- Patheia (suffering).
Overview of Allopathic medicine
Allopathic medicine is synonymous with modern and western medicine. Throughout the United States, Europe, and much of the developed world (as well as developing nations), the guiding philosophy in both theoretical, educational, practical, and research aspects of medicine stems from allopathic medicine.
Allopathic-based medicine is also the driving force behind initiatives of public health and health system resources based on evidence. This approach covers everything from diagnosis of disease to information about treatment options. This helps physicians provide their patients reliable and dependable medical advice as well as critical health information to patients.
Regardless of whether they are treating people suffering from fever, blood pressure issues, cancer, or heart disease, practitioners of allopathic medicine use proven medical therapies for treating illnesses and other health conditions.
Allopathic treatments doctors offer
Practitioners of allopathic medicine treat a wide variety of infections, illnesses, and diseases through a good combination of prescription drugs, hormones, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, surgical and radiation treatments.
The prescription drugs often used by allopathic doctors include antibiotics to treat infections and certain prescription medicines for treating diagnosed ailments. Also, depending on the patient’s diagnosis, some allopathic treatments use drugs to supplement naturally occurring hormones, like insulin for diabetes patients, testosterone for men, estrogen for women, and thyroid hormones.
The most commonly used OTC medications include medicine countering inflammation, pain killers, muscle relaxants, and cough suppressants. Physicians teaching at a well-known Caribbean medical school reveal that doctors recommend these medicines to patients as additional symptom management options.
Apart from medications, allopathic medicine also pertains to surgical methods for purposes of exploration in the human body. Such exploration is for removing diseased or damaged cells or tissues, repairing damage from trauma or injuries (or both), redirecting blood vessels, or for a complete organ transplant.
The specialties and subspecialties of modern medicine
Fortunately, modern medicine has achieved that level of specialization few could have ever imagined. As per the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), here are the medical specialties widely revered in allopathic medicine:
- Allergy and immunology.
- Internal Medicine.
- Nuclear Medicine.
- Neurological surgery.
- Plastic surgery.
- Family medicine.
- Thoracic surgery.
- Orthopedic surgery.
- Preventive medicine.
- Emergency medicine.
- Psychiatry and neurology.
- Colon and Rectal Surgery.
- Obstetrics and Gynecology.
- Medical Genetics and Genomics.
- Physical medicine and rehabilitation.
In each of these specialties, the American Board of Medical Specialties also recognizes a diverse array of subspecialties.
Education and Training in allopathic medicine
Most medical schools today are fundamentally allopathic. Their training programs put aspiring physicians on the same path. Upon completion of an undergraduate degree in a related field, med students enter med school and upon graduation from there, they enter a residency program. They are on the verge of becoming physicians once their residency is complete and can hence apply for medical licenses. Some however wish to pursue a fellowship for more specialization in their given medical field’s subfield.