Tips and Tricks to Get the Most Out of PubMed

PubMed Link

Click the button above to access PubMed.

Create An Account

Create a free account to save searches, save records, set up alerts, and more. To do this, click on "Sign in to NCBI" in the upper right-hand corner. Next, click on "Register for an NCBI account." You will now be able to access your saved searches, alerts, and selected bibliographies through the "My NCBI" link in the upper right-hand corner.

Highlight Search Terms

A simple but useful tip to help you find and browse literature with ease. Once you have created a NCBI account, select "My NCBI" and then "NCBI Site Preferences." On the next page, you can choose display settings such as highlighting and results per page.

Search Clinical Queries

On the PubMed home page, click on "Clinical Queries" under Find on the home page and enter your search. Your search will be filtered into two pre-set categories: Clinical Studies and COVID-19.

Search Clinical Queries.

Use Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)

Using MeSH terms helps account for variations in language, acronyms, and British vs. American English. Using a MeSH term that is relevant to your topic can help you find more literature than you would if searching with keywords alone.

Browse the MeSH database to find a term that is relevant to your topic.

Create Search Alerts

For Journal Table of Contents

First, create a free login for NCBI in the upper right-hand corner. Now, you can save a search on a particular journal and receive an update every month on new articles. Browse for the journal under "Journals" under Explore on the home page.

When you find the journal you want to receive alerts on, click "Add to Search Builder" and "Search PubMed." Click "Create Alert" under the search box and set up your new alert.

For Topics

You can also create alerts for any searches that you are interested in and want to receive updates on. Run your search terms as you normally would, then follow the steps from Step 2 above to create an alert for your topic.

Searching Tutorials

PubMed YouTube Tutorials

For more help, see this comprehensive list of PubMed Tutorials.