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All About PubMed

How do I ...

How do I read a PubMed citation?

What do the brackets around citations mean?

Bracketed citations are an indication that the article is written in a language other than English.

How do I get the full text of an article?

Access PubMed from the JABSOM Library website to see icons for UH holdings (the Find It button). If no icons appear, check to see if you are connected to PubMed via the JABSOM Library:

Another option is to set up your institutional affiliation in your My NCBI account (Outside Tool)

What journals are indexed in PubMed, and how are they selected?

The NLM Catalog: Journals referenced in the NCBI Databases allows you to search for journals referenced in NCBI databases, including PubMed. Visit Journal Selection for MEDLINE to learn the criteria used to select a journal for inclusion in the MEDLINE database.

Is MEDLINE and PubMed the same thing?

See the NLM Fact Sheet: MEDLINE, PubMed, and PMC (PubMed Central): How are they different? 

Can I save a search with PubMed?

You can save a search in PubMed using your MyNCBI.  Go to the My NCBI page for more information on saving searches and other MyNCBI services. See PubMed Help for instructions on saving a search as RSS feeds and creating a URL to bookmark your search.

How do I save searches and citations or create email alerts?

My NCBI is your personal space for saving searches to re-run or have mailed as automatic alerts, saving article citations as collections or bibliographies, and setting PubMed preferences. Click on the NCBI link at the top right of the PubMed window to get started. Register for a free NCBI account. See the My NCBI page for more information. 

How do I find peer-reviewed articles in PubMed?

Most of the journals indexed in PubMed are peer-reviewed, but there is no limiter for peer review. Use Limits to eliminate letters, editorials, etc., and then use Clinical Queries (found on the Home page under find). Most of what is left will be peer-reviewed. Alternatively, you can use Journals in the NCBI Database (located on the Home page under Explore) to look up a specific journal and go to the journal site to see if it is peer-reviewed.

How do I find Help?

Help links are found at the top of all PubMed screens. For additional assistance, please consult with a librarian or email us at

How can I find a complete citation for a single article?

Use Single Citation Matcher Watch Video The link is found at the bottom of the Home page and under More Resources at the top of the Advanced Search screen. It lets you fill in known information about a specific reference to retrieve the full citation.

Where can I temporarily save my citations?

Use the Clipboard. The Clipboard is a temporary holding file for all citations collected during your online session. Select desired citations and use the Send to link to save to Clipboard. Click on the Clipboard link on the right side of the Results page to retrieve all citations on your Clipboard. Results on the Clipboard will be lost after 8 hours of inactivity.

How do I save my search strategy?

Use your My NCBI account to save your search, directions here: Watch Video  Or use History, found on the Advanced Search screen, History holds your search strategies and results from your current search session. Use the Download history option to save your searches in a .csv file format. 

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