Find the perfect Medical Subject Heading (MeSH) for your topic!

For years, the folks at the National Library of Medicine (NLM) who read and index EVERY article in PubMed have had a tool to help them.  The NLM Medical Text Indexer (MTI) analyzes the abstract or other information about an article to suggest MeSH terms for indexers to tag articles with relevant topics.  MTI is a bit complex for most needs so NLM has released a “lite” version great for PubMed searching applications.

Now you can get a head start on identifying terms relevant to your subject that you can add to a search strategy.  MeSH on Demand provides a text box to enter an abstract from a relevant article, or a well formulated clinical question, or a list of words that describe key parts of your research topic.  Mesh on Demand analyzes that text and presents a list of possible MeSH terms to include in your search.  Here’s an example:


The illustration is a bit small (click to enlarge), but you can see the paragraph that was entered retrieved about 12 suggestions of MeSH terms that might relate to my abstract contents.

I took the suggestions and searched PubMed for :

data mining and libraries and publishing

and found three articles.

Try your own search topic using an abstract, question or keywords and see if MeSH on Demand can  jump start your PubMed searching success!

Want some expert advice on your search process?  Schedule a free consultation with a Health Science Library librarian today!


[Lynne M. Fox, Education Librarian]