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WHSL Basic Searching in PubMed: When Should you Search PubMed?

A brief guide to using one MeSH term to search PubMed


As a student in the health sciences, you are expected to make use of, to analyze and to integrate information from the published literature into the subject knowledge that you acquire. When you integrate this material into written assignments, you are also expected to acknowledge from where this information has been taken, and to refer to the original source of the information. You will do so by learning how to cite (or refer to) the literature. For advanced citations (Vancouver style), you should refer to the WHSL Vancouver Citation Style Guide for Theses, Dissertations and Research Reports.

However, you first need to learn to search for the literature published in your field. You can do so in PubMed, or you can explore other databases in the field of the health sciences. Select the name of the database from the alphabetical drop down menu.

PubMed @ WHSL

Make sure you always use PubMed through the link provided on the LibGuide called WHSL e-Resources in Health Care or links embedded within some libguides. Select the tab Databases A-Z, and from links in these guides take advantage of links to the fulltext electronic resources (books, journals, journal articles, etc.) that WHSL purchases on your behalf. For PubMed, select P from the drop down menu; then select the PubMed hyperlink. 

Remote access to fulltext documents from PubMed will be available via these links by inserting your Library PIN when prompted to do so. 

Note: You only need to create this PIN once! If you have already set a PIN, you do not need to do so again unless you leave Wits University and come back again at a later stage.

What is PubMed?

PubMed lets you search millions of journal citations and abstracts in the fields of medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, the health care system, and preclinical sciences. It includes access to MEDLINE® and to citations for selected articles in life science journals not included in MEDLINE. PubMed also provides access to additional relevant Web sites and links to the other NCBI molecular biology resources.