What Constitutes Acute Medical Care?

When it comes to your health, there are two main types of concerns or illnesses that may need treatment: acute and chronic. While chronic issues are continuous and long-term, an acute condition is usually temporary and short-term. Acute medical care addresses issues that appear suddenly and need immediate treatment but can be short-lived if the patient gets the right care from a medical professional.

Some people confuse chronic and acute with the severity of the illness or injury. Both chronic and acute medical issues can be serious, but the difference is in the length of medical treatment needed. Acute medical care refers to treating illnesses or injuries that will get better or are short-lived. Chronic medical issues can linger for many years and some are not curable but may be managed through medical care.

What Illnesses Need Acute Medical Care?

Most common illnesses and injuries fall under acute medical care. When you have a cold or get the flu, you need immediate relief, but often the symptoms will dissipate in a short time period. Some acute illnesses can go away on their own, but others may worsen or cause other health issues if not addressed. Even though they are short-term, a severe acute illness can be fatal if not treated. Some common illnesses that require acute medical care include:

  • Flu and colds
  • Bronchitis
  • Sinusitis or sinus infection
  • Strep throat
  • Ear infections
  • Stomach viruses
  • Colic
  • Injuries: burns, lacerations, fractured bones, etc.

When a health professional refers to acute illnesses, it means they are short-term and should not continue to have long lasting effects. However, complications from an acute issue can lead to chronic problems. For example, broken bones can be treated with acute medical care, and in most cases, the patient will not have long-term effects. However, if the fractured bone is not treated, or incorrectly treated, it could cause long-term issues.

At Clinica Las Americas, we offer both chronic and acute medical care amongst our services. If you have an acute illness or injury, come see us at one of our Houston clinics for exceptional medical care in a friendly, family-orientated environment.