subject headings


Summary: Terms or expressions which provide the major means of access by subject to the bibliographic unit.

Top Publications

  1. Jenuwine E, Floyd J. Comparison of Medical Subject Headings and text-word searches in MEDLINE to retrieve studies on sleep in healthy individuals. J Med Libr Assoc. 2004;92:349-53 pubmed
    ..Two search strategies-one based on the use of only Medical Subject Headings (MeSH), the second based on text-word searching-were evaluated as to their specificity and sensitivity in ..
  2. McGregor B. Medical indexing outside the National Library of Medicine. J Med Libr Assoc. 2002;90:339-41 pubmed
  3. Gault L, Shultz M, Davies K. Variations in Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) mapping: from the natural language of patron terms to the controlled vocabulary of mapped lists. J Med Libr Assoc. 2002;90:173-80 pubmed
    This study compared the mapping of natural language patron terms to the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) across six MeSH interfaces for the MEDLINE database...
  4. Bodenreider O. The Unified Medical Language System (UMLS): integrating biomedical terminology. Nucleic Acids Res. 2004;32:D267-70 pubmed
    ..Vocabularies integrated in the UMLS Metathesaurus include the NCBI taxonomy, Gene Ontology, the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH), OMIM and the Digital Anatomist Symbolic Knowledge Base...
  5. Chiang J, Yu H, Hsu H. GIS: a biomedical text-mining system for gene information discovery. Bioinformatics. 2004;20:120-1 pubmed
    ..The aim of this system is to provide researchers an easy-to-use bio-information service that will rapidly survey the rapidly burgeoning biomedical literature. ..
  6. Rosse C, Mejino J. A reference ontology for biomedical informatics: the Foundational Model of Anatomy. J Biomed Inform. 2003;36:478-500 pubmed
  7. Ingui B, Rogers M. Searching for clinical prediction rules in MEDLINE. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2001;8:391-7 pubmed
    ..ti. AND rule$." Several filters with high retrieval value were found. Depending on the goals and time constraints of the searcher, one of these filters could be used. ..
  8. Coletti M, Bleich H. Medical subject headings used to search the biomedical literature. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2001;8:317-23 pubmed that each reference to the medical literature is indexed under a controlled vocabulary called Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). These headings are the keys that unlock the medical literature...
  9. Haynes R, Wilczynski N. Optimal search strategies for retrieving scientifically strong studies of diagnosis from Medline: analytical survey. BMJ. 2004;328:1040 pubmed
    ..3% v 98.6%) but lower specificity (54.7% v 74.3%). New empirical search strategies in Medline can optimise retrieval of articles reporting high quality clinical studies of diagnosis. ..

More Information


  1. Lowe H, Barnett G. Understanding and using the medical subject headings (MeSH) vocabulary to perform literature searches. JAMA. 1994;271:1103-8 pubmed
    ..MEDLINE is manually indexed with NLM's Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) vocabulary. Using MeSH, a searcher can potentially create powerful and unambiguous MEDLINE queries...
  2. Crasto C, Marenco L, Migliore M, Mao B, Nadkarni P, Miller P, et al. Text mining neuroscience journal articles to populate neuroscience databases. Neuroinformatics. 2003;1:215-37 pubmed
    ..Software that uses the NeuroText approach can facilitate the creation of curated, special-interest, bibliography databases. ..
  3. Schleyer T, Corby P, Gregg A. A preliminary analysis of the dental informatics literature. Adv Dent Res. 2003;17:20-4 pubmed
    ..growth rate, the number of authors and their publication frequency, and content as expressed by Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)...
  4. Stevinson C, Lawlor D. Searching multiple databases for systematic reviews: added value or diminishing returns?. Complement Ther Med. 2004;12:228-32 pubmed
    ..Searching Medline alone for systematic reviews of exercise or other unconventional therapies is likely to be inadequate. ..
  5. Gaudan S, Kirsch H, Rebholz Schuhmann D. Resolving abbreviations to their senses in Medline. Bioinformatics. 2005;21:3658-64 pubmed
    ..9% for a recall of 98.2% (98.5% accuracy). This performance is superior in comparison with previously reported research work. The abbreviation resolution module is available at ..
  6. Fikar C. Making sense of liver enzymes, liver function tests, and hepatobiliary disorders at the reference desk. Med Ref Serv Q. 2003;22:15-22 pubmed
    ..Commonly used medical jargon for this area is also explained. Examples of specific search strategies are illustrated. ..
  7. Spallek H. Information retrieval on the Internet: a guide for dental practitioners. Dent Clin North Am. 2002;46:435-62 pubmed
    ..Searchers use these services, which are usually free, to satisfy their information needs. Knowing when to use which search engine and how to use it is crucial to finding the right information in a timely fashion...
  8. Barrio J. Molecular imaging and biology has been accepted for indexing by the National Library of Medicine. Mol Imaging Biol. 2003;5:1 pubmed
  9. Grishman R, Huttunen S, Yangarber R. Information extraction for enhanced access to disease outbreak reports. J Biomed Inform. 2002;35:236-46 pubmed
    ..A small study comparing the effectiveness of the tabular index with conventional Web search tools demonstrated that users can find substantially more documents in a given time period with Proteus-BIO. ..
  10. Carroll P. Searching the literature: more resources to make the purchase decision. Hosp Mater Manage Q. 1992;13:42-54 pubmed
    ..For the materiel manager, literature searches can provide additional information, and access to research and other data to assist in making objective, informed, defensible purchasing decisions. ..
  11. Aktipis C, Kwan V, Johnson K, Neuberg S, Maley C. Overlooking evolution: a systematic analysis of cancer relapse and therapeutic resistance research. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e26100 pubmed publisher
    ..This represents an unrealized opportunity for advances in research on therapeutic resistance. ..
  12. Leonard J, Colombe J, Levy J. Finding relevant references to genes and proteins in Medline using a Bayesian approach. Bioinformatics. 2002;18:1515-22 pubmed
  13. Agrawal A, Perl Y, Chen Y, Elhanan G, Liu M. Identifying inconsistencies in SNOMED CT problem lists using structural indicators. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2013;2013:17-26 pubmed
    ..The results demonstrate that the concepts in problem lists are not free of inconsistencies and further quality assurance is needed to improve the quality of these concepts. ..
  14. McKibbon K, Haynes R, Dilks C, Ramsden M, Ryan N, Baker L, et al. How good are clinical MEDLINE searches? A comparative study of clinical end-user and librarian searches. Comput Biomed Res. 1990;23:583-93 pubmed
    ..Further research is needed to determine the "learning curve," evaluate training interventions, and explore the non-overlapping retrieval of relevant citations by different searchers. ..
  15. Kementsietsidis A, Lim L, Wang M. Profile-based retrieval of records in medical databases. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2009;2009:312-6 pubmed
  16. Brand de Heer D. A comparison of the coverage of clinical medicine provided by PASCAL BIOMED and MEDLINE. Health Info Libr J. 2001;18:110-6 pubmed
    ..Yet a sizeable proportion of the relevant references were unique to PASCAL BIOMED. Probably PASCAL BIOMED would have performed better if lists of descriptors had been accessible in the database, preferably with support to trace them. ..
  17. Sykora V, Leahy D. Chemical Descriptors Library (CDL): a generic, open source software library for chemical informatics. J Chem Inf Model. 2008;48:1931-42 pubmed publisher
    ..The properties of the algorithms in terms of complexity analysis and processing times are presented and discussed. ..
  18. Kumar A, Wright J, Adams C. Searching a biomedical bibliographic database from the Ukraine: the Panteleimon database. Health Info Libr J. 2005;22:223-7 pubmed
  19. Payne P, Mendonca E, Starren J. Modeling participant-related clinical research events using conceptual knowledge acquisition techniques. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2007;:593-7 pubmed
    ..These techniques identified 7 high-level concepts that could be used as organizing principles in the resulting knowledge collection. Such results confirm the utility of CKA methods in the clinical research domain. ..
  20. Fielding A, Powell A. Using Medline to achieve an evidence-based approach to diagnostic clinical biochemistry. Ann Clin Biochem. 2002;39:345-50 pubmed
    ..The goal is that users can improve their literature search technique by employing a structured approach. As usual, asking relevant questions before starting a search is essential. ..
  21. Kelly L, St Pierre Hansen N. So many databases, such little clarity: Searching the literature for the topic aboriginal. Can Fam Physician. 2008;54:1572-3 pubmed
    ..To fully capture the complete body of available literature on other subjects might require searches of many databases, depending on the topic. ..
  22. Slaughter L, Soergel D, Rindflesch T. Semantic representation of consumer questions and physician answers. Int J Med Inform. 2006;75:513-29 pubmed
    ..For example, we determined that both consumers and physicians often express causative relationships and these play a key role in leading to further related concepts. ..
  23. McKenzie K, Campbell M, Scott D, Discoll T, Harrison J, McClure R. Identifying work related injuries: comparison of methods for interrogating text fields. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak. 2010;10:19 pubmed publisher
    ..95). The findings of this study provide strong support for continued development of text searching methods to obtain information from routine emergency department data, to improve the capacity for comprehensive injury surveillance. ..
  24. Srikrishna D, Coram M. Using noun phrases for navigating biomedical literature on Pubmed: how many updates are we losing track of?. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e24920 pubmed publisher
    ..The significance and relationship of each search result to the paper can only be vetted and explained by a researcher with knowledge of or interest in that paper. ..
  25. Golder S, Loke Y. Sensitivity and precision of adverse effects search filters in MEDLINE and EMBASE: a case study of fractures with thiazolidinediones. Health Info Libr J. 2012;29:28-38 pubmed publisher
    ..High precision in MEDLINE could also be achieved (up to 53%) using search filters that rely on Medical Subject Headings. No search filter in EMBASE achieved high precision (all were under 5%) and the highest sensitivity in EMBASE ..
  26. Mougin F, Bodenreider O. Approaches to eliminating cycles in the UMLS Metathesaurus: naïve vs. formal. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2005;:550-4 pubmed
    ..12% of the concepts with descendants exhibit some differences. The formal approach significantly reduces the number of descendants in these cases. The benefits in terms of semantic coherence are more subtle. ..
  27. Chen L, Lian G, Han L. Prediction of human skin permeability using artificial neural network (ANN) modeling. Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2007;28:591-600 pubmed
    ..The study suggests that Abraham descriptors may be used to predict skin permeability, and the ANN model gives improved prediction of skin permeability. ..
  28. Fikar C. Making sense of autoimmune and rheumatic disorders at the reference desk. Med Ref Serv Q. 2003;22:13-9 pubmed
    ..Commonly used medical jargon as well as older terminology for this area is also explained. Examples of specific search strategies are illustrated. ..
  29. Refinetti R. Retrieval performance in online search in thermal physiology. Comput Biomed Res. 1990;23:32-6 pubmed
    ..Overall, more relevant documents were retrieved in MEDLINE than in BIOSIS. Even in MEDLINE, however, only about 40% of the total existing documents (as estimated by an expert in thermal physiology) were retrieved. ..
  30. Hristovski D, Stare J, Peterlin B, Dzeroski S. Supporting discovery in medicine by association rule mining in Medline and UMLS. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2001;84:1344-8 pubmed
    ..The evaluation showed that our approach for supporting discovery in medicine is successful, but also that some improvements are needed, especially on limiting the number of potential discoveries the system generates. ..
  31. Darmoni S, Thirion B, Platel S, Douyère M, Mourouga P, Leroy J. CISMeF-patient: a French counterpart to MEDLINEplus. J Med Libr Assoc. 2002;90:248-53 pubmed
  32. Gallagher P, Allen T, Wyer P. How to find evidence when you need it, part 2: a clinician's guide to MEDLINE: the basics. Ann Emerg Med. 2002;39:436-40 pubmed
  33. Dorsch J, Pifalo V. Information needs of rural health professionals: a retrospective use study. Bull Med Libr Assoc. 1997;85:341-7 pubmed
  34. Felton D, Lang B. The overview: an article that interrogates the literature. J Prosthet Dent. 2000;84:17-21 pubmed
  35. Leeflang M, Scholten R, Rutjes A, Reitsma J, Bossuyt P. Use of methodological search filters to identify diagnostic accuracy studies can lead to the omission of relevant studies. J Clin Epidemiol. 2006;59:234-40 pubmed
    ..When preparing a systematic review, it may be preferable to avoid using methodological filters. ..
  36. Chen R, Klein G, Sundvall E, Karlsson D, Ahlfeldt H. Archetype-based conversion of EHR content models: pilot experience with a regional EHR system. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak. 2009;9:33 pubmed publisher
    ..Archetype support can be added to legacy EHR systems in an incremental way allowing a migration path to interoperability based on standards. ..
  37. Pilkington K. Searching for CAM evidence: an evaluation of therapy-specific search strategies. J Altern Complement Med. 2007;13:451-9 pubmed
    ..Possible optimum strategies are presented as a basis for discussion, and further testing of the effectiveness of these strategies is now a priority. ..
  38. Snowman C, Scheuerle A. Qualitative descriptors of disease incidence: commonly used and frequently muddled. Am J Med Genet A. 2009;149A:1460-2 pubmed publisher
    ..Editorial boards might consider setting parameters for use of these terms in order to decrease confusion about how "common" a condition actually is. ..
  39. Schwartz L, Kijewski P, Lynch K, Lis E, Panicek D. Review and interpretation of MR imaging studies with PACS: creating uniform series descriptors for radiologists and referring physicians. AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2002;179:575-7 pubmed
    ..We reduced the number of descriptors to 146 without loss of essential information. Use of standardized descriptors may facilitate identification of various MR image series. ..
  40. Otero P, Pedernera F, Montenegro S, Borbolla D, García Martí S, Luna D, et al. Evolution of medical informatics in bibliographic databases. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2004;107:301-5 pubmed
    ..So we think that LILACS properly represents the specialty in Latin America and the Caribbean Region. ..
  41. Younger P, Boddy K. When is a search not a search? A comparison of searching the AMED complementary health database via EBSCOhost, OVID and DIALOG. Health Info Libr J. 2009;26:126-35 pubmed publisher
    ..In addition to ensuring that keywords, spelling and medical subject headings (MeSH) accurately reflect the nature of the search, database users should include wildcards and truncation ..
  42. Rekapalli H, Cohen A, Hersh W. A comparative analysis of retrieval features used in the TREC 2006 Genomics Track passage retrieval task. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2007;:620-4 pubmed
    ..This approach has general value for analyzing the results of similar common challenge tasks. ..
  43. Mendonca E, Cimino J. Building a knowledge base to support a digital library. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2001;84:221-5 pubmed
    ..Future directions include the validation of the knowledge, based on an evaluation of system performance. ..
  44. Sousa F, Pereira L, Cardoso R, Hortense P. Multidimensional pain evaluation scale. Rev Lat Am Enfermagem. 2010;18:3-10 pubmed
    ..99, close to the predicted (one), using line-length estimations. The Multidimensional Pain Evaluation Scale is thus validated for the Portuguese language. ..
  45. Pakhomov S, Hanson P, Bjornsen S, Smith S. Automatic classification of foot examination findings using clinical notes and machine learning. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2008;15:198-202 pubmed
    ..This application may improve quality and safety by providing inexpensive and scalable methodology for quality and risk factor assessments at the point of care. ..
  46. Altman R, Flockhart D, Sherry S, Oliver D, Rubin D, Klein T. Indexing pharmacogenetic knowledge on the World Wide Web. Pharmacogenetics. 2003;13:3-5 pubmed
  47. Singh S, Hull R, Fluder E. Text Influenced Molecular Indexing (TIMI): a literature database mining approach that handles text and chemistry. J Chem Inf Comput Sci. 2003;43:743-52 pubmed
    ..Thus, the TIMI system offers a powerful new approach to uncovering the contextual scientific knowledge sought by the medical research community. ..
  48. Yoneya T. PSE: a tool for browsing a large amount of MEDLINE/PubMed abstracts with gene names and common words as the keywords. BMC Bioinformatics. 2005;6:295 pubmed
    ..We believe PSE is helpful in collecting necessary literatures efficiently in order to find research targets. PSE is freely available under the GPL licence as additional files to this manuscript. ..
  49. de Granda Orive J. [Abbreviations: Must we accept them?]. Arch Bronconeumol. 2003;39:287 pubmed
  50. Chapman W, Cooper G, Hanbury P, Chapman B, Harrison L, Wagner M. Creating a text classifier to detect radiology reports describing mediastinal findings associated with inhalational anthrax and other disorders. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2003;10:494-503 pubmed
    ..04. The IPS system is a useful tool for helping domain experts create a statistical key word classifier for textual reports that is a potentially useful component in surveillance of radiographic findings suspicious for anthrax. ..
  51. Shen M, Calabretta N, Cavanaugh S, Datwani N, Lew C, Dadhania M. Analysis of current nuclear cardiology literature in MEDLINE database: a study of gated SPECT imaging using PubMed. J Nucl Cardiol. 2003;10:650-5 pubmed
    ..The clinical nuclear cardiology terminology and classifications were compared with the available Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) and MeSH Trees used for indexing in MEDLINE...
  52. Gobel G, Andreatta S, Masser J, Pfeiffer K. A MeSH based intelligent search intermediary for Consumer Health Information Systems. Int J Med Inform. 2001;64:241-51 pubmed
    ..The tool is part of the GIN Search Modul, which will ease gathering health information from different heterogenous internet datasources. ..
  53. Strachan H. Nursing terminology. Res Theory Nurs Pract. 2003;17:183-6 pubmed