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All About PubMed

What's in this Guide


PubMed, developed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), provides access to bibliographic citations to biomedical journal articles, including MEDLINE, and to additional life sciences journals. MEDLINE is NLM's database covering the fields of medicine, nursing, dentistry, the health care system, and the preclinical sciences.  MEDLINE contains bibliographic citations and author abstracts from over 5400 biomedical journals published in the United States and 70 other countries and dating back to the 1940's. Updated 5 times/week.

Access PubMed from the Health Sciences Library or UH Libraries websites to see icons showing full-text availability.

Use the tabs at the top left to navigate through the pages of this guide.  Tabs are available for:

  • Run a Search provides step-by-step instructions for running a search in PubMed, including inputting search terms, using filters to limit your search by language, ages, and other common topics, viewing your results, printing/saving/emailing your citations, and how to find the full-text of articles and order copies if needed.
  • Find Full-Text lists steps to follow to get a complete journal article from a PubMed citation.
  • Refine Searches provides:
    • Quick PubMed Tips Refine Searches
    • Hints for improving search results when finding too many or too few citations.
  • Find Evidence-Based Articles details three methods to limit your search results.
  • MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) is a list of keywords or descriptors that describe articles in MEDLINE.  Using MeSH is an advanced way to search to identify search terms and to focus a search.
  • Export Citations to Citation Managers such as EndNote, EndNote Basic, and Zotero.
  • FAQ

For comprehensive PubMed help see PubMed Help or click the Help link at the top right of PubMed pages or contact the library at

PubMed Workshop


Thank you to the University of Washington Health Sciences Library for allowing us to use their guide as a template.

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