PubMed Tutorialhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedLocating and Using MeSH terms in PubMed
This is the first screen you will seeupon entering the PubMeddatabase. Follow the steps below tolocate the appropriate MeSHterms.• The default choice for the drop down is PubMed. Scroll down until you locate „MeSH‟.• Click on MeSH to begin your MeSH term search.• Enter your natural language term in the search box then click on the search icon.For this tutorial, the naturallanguage term „lesbian‟ will beused.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?holding=txuwxtlib_fft_ndi&otool=txuwxtlib
This is the top half of the MeSHpage.Enter the natural language term„lesbian‟ in the box to the right ofthe drop down then click onsearch. This is the screen whichillustrates the MeSH term for„lesbian‟.The MeSH term„homosexuality, female‟ is thesearch term to use from this pointon, either by itself or with asecond MeSH term depending onyour research needs.• Click on “Add to search builder” to enter the MeSH term into the PubMed search builder• Once term is entered then click on “Search PubMed” to begin the literature search.
This is the bottom half of theMeSH term page.Each time PubMed searches aMeSh term, it will „explode‟ aterm when possible. Twoexamples are shown for“Homosexuality, Female” in thered box to the right.The top example illustrates aconnection between Behavior andBehavior Mechanisms andHomosexuality, Female. Incontrast, the second example linksHomosexuality, Female toReproductive and UrinaryPhysiological Phenomena.These „explosions‟ are referred toas MeSH trees as each descendingterm branches off of a main MeSHcategory.
After clicking onto the searchicon, the screen to your right willappear with various articles relatedto the MeSH term under review.• At this point in your search, it is important to verify the search term as being MeSH.• This can be verified by the appearance of [Mesh] to the right of the term.For the search using“Homosexuality, Female” as theMeSH term the results indicatedthere are 2099 articles for review.On the left side of the screen, arevarious filters to be used in furtherrestricting the results. Those listedare the default filters with additionalfilters located by clicking on the„show additional filters‟ at the topleft side of the page.In the upper right corner is the „Sendto‟ dropdown, when opened it willallow you to either save yoursearches to a temporary site(clipboard) or a permanent site (Mybibliography).
For this search, I chose thefollowing filters – publication dates(5 yrs), species (human), articletype (systematic reviews), language(English), and age (adult 19+ yrs).From this search, there were sevenresults.Currency, evidence basedmedicine, and validity to searchterm were the reasons these filterswere chosen.This is the MeSH equation:"Homosexuality, Female"[Mesh]AND ("2007/08/07"[PDat] :"2012/08/04"[PDat] AND"humans"[MeSH Terms] ANDsystematic[sb] AND English[lang]AND "adult"[MeSH Terms])To determine actual relevance tothe search underway, reviewingeach article is the next step. Toopen an article link, simply click onthe title of the article.Additional articles may be locatedthrough the „Titles with your searchterms‟ located in the upper rightcorner.
This is the abstract for Article #2from the previous slide. Theabstract will assist you inverifying the article‟s relevance toyour search parameters.In addition to an abstract, there arethree other important areas to usein searching for key articles. Theseare „Find Full Text” (upper rightcorner), „Related citations inPubMed‟ (middle right side), and„Recent activity‟ (lower rightcorner). Each gives the useravenues for accessing full textarticles and locating additionalsources of information on theirsearch term as well as a visualreminder of articles alreadyviewed during the search.
An additional feature ofPubMed is PubMed ClinicalQueries. To begin a search inthis area, leave the databasedefault at PubMed, clear thesearch box then click on thesearch box (upper screenshot).This action will bring you tothe next screen where „ClinicalQueries can be located.The lower screenshot showsyou where to locate „ClinicalQueries‟. Clinical queriesallows the user to deepen theirresearch in three areas –Clinical StudyCategories, SystemicReviews, and MedicalGenetics.
Here is the PubMed ClinicalQueries search window. Be sure touse only the MeSH term in thesearch box. Enter the MeSH termthen click on Search.In Clinical Study Categories, thereare five subheadings – Etiology,Diagnosis, Therapy, Prognosis,and Clinical prediction guideswith two scopes – Broad orNarrow to further use to restrictyour search. Medical Geneticsoffers eight subheadings forfiltering results – All, Diagnoses,Differential Diagnoses, ClinicalDescription, Management,Genetic Counseling, MolecularGenetics, and Genetic Counseling.In contrast, Systemic Reviewsdoes not allow for additionalfiltering via subheadings.For this tutorial, I chose to useClinical Study Categories –Therapy – Broad as a filteringagent.
This is the abstract of the firstarticle listed in the screenshot onthe previous slide. As with thearticles from the general MeSHsearch, the articles locatedthrough „Clinical Queries‟ maybe sent to the clipboard and/orMy bibliography as well as thePubMed database alerting you toother possible articles throughthe „Related citations in PubMed‟link.This tutorial covers some of theaspects offered through thePubMed database. PubMed isworthy of a more thoroughreview of its capabilities inaiding research by healthprofessionals.