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Search PubMed

Query Box


The PubMed Advanced Search Builder is composed of three boxes labeled below.

1) The Fields Box attaches a field code to the search term entered in the Search Term Box

2) The Search Term Box adds the search term into the Query Box when you click on the Add button.

3) The Query Box searches the string of terms contained in that box.

To use the Advanced Search Builder, either add terms directly into the Query box or use the Search Term Box, select a field, and hit Add.

Screenshot of PubMed's Advanced Search Builder. The three boxes are labeled 1, 2, and 3 in red text.

Fields

Field codes tell PubMed where in the article record you want it to search for a term. Author, title, journal title, abstract, and MeSH terms are examples of fields that you can search.

Below are three helpful fields that you should consider when narrowing your search. Visit PubMed's help page for a full list of PubMed field descriptions.

Text Word

Turns off the Automatic Term Mapping that the basic search does, so it only finds the word exactly as you wrote it. Combine with other fields for a more focused search.

Title/Abstract

Looks for the term you wrote in only the title or abstract of the article. This focuses and narrows you results because sometimes the word you are searching for shows up in the journal title, author affiliations, and other random fields in the record that are not helpful to you.

MeSH Major Topic

Chosen by a subject analyst. Guarantees that the term will be one of the main topics discussed in the article rather than a secondary focus or finding. Read more about MeSH search tags.