PubMed update

When searching in PubMed, you may find yourself looking for a phrase that can occur in multiple variants, with words in-between your key terms. Until now, you needed to anticipate and enter all of the options separately to get a comprehensive search. However, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) recently announced that proximity search capabilities have been added to PubMed. This will allow users to look for multiple terms appearing in the [Title] or [Title/Abstract] fields in any order within a specified distance of one another.
To create a proximity search in PubMed, enter terms using the following format:
“search terms”[field:~N]

Search terms = Two or more words enclosed in double quotes.

Field = The search field tag for the [Title] or [Title/Abstract] fields.

N = The maximum number of words that may appear between your search terms.

For example, to search PubMed for citations where the terms “hip” and “pain” appear with no more than two words between them in the Title/Abstract search field, try the search: “hip pain”[Title/Abstract:~2]

You can learn more about this feature in the NLM Technical Bulletin or by watching a brief video tutorial on how to apply proximity searching. The Einstein librarians are also available to help you with all your searching questions via email, phone, text, or chat. Or set up a Zoom appointment with us by clicking the “Request a consultation” button on the right side of the library home page.