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MeSH Translations

Though the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) vocabulary is created and maintained in American English, the audience and colleagues supporting and using the vocabulary are international. In the spirit of international cooperation, suggestions for new terms and modifications to existing terms are received from institutions and individuals located across the globe, enhancing and enriching MeSH contents. NLM is able to accept translated versions of MeSH from other organizations. 

Obtaining MeSH Translations

When provided by their contributing organizations, MeSH translations are included as source vocabularies in the Unified Medical Language System (UMLS). Users can obtain a copy of these translations by either obtaining a UMLS license or by contacting the organization providing the translation. Please refer to the UMLS Quick Start Guide, to learn about using the UMLS to access the different versions of MeSH or other vocabularies.

The UMLS includes foreign language translations of MeSH from a broad array of sources. These translations have included Croatian, Czech, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Swedish. The frequency and currency of these translations are controlled by the organizations producing them. There may be restrictions for their use that are identified in the UMLS licensing agreements. For further information see the UMLS MeSH Source Information Page which gives details for each translated version and the organizations providing the translation.