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 February 06, 2002 [posted]
 Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Included in MEDLINE®

Drop cap graphic of the letter T he National Library of Medicine (NLM) has been indexing the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (Cochrane Reviews) for MEDLINE since Summer 2000. As described on the Cochrane Collaboration Web site at the "Cochrane Reviews are full text articles reviewing the effects of healthcare. The reviews are highly structured and systematic, with evidence included or excluded on the basis of explicit quality criteria, to minimise bias. Data are often combined statistically (with meta-analysis) to increase the power of the findings of numerous studies, each too small to produce reliable results individually."

"First" Issue
NLM began indexing the Cochrane Reviews with issue 2, 2000. Earlier issues will not be indexed by NLM. For subsequent issues, NLM creates new citations only for new articles added, or for articles that have been substantively updated. To date, there are 1,125 fully-indexed Cochrane Reviews in MEDLINE/PubMed®. NLM is currently indexing issues 2, 3, & 4 2001, for which there are 391 citations in PubMed as either [PubMed - in process] or [PubMed - as supplied by publisher].

Updated Citations
If a Cochrane Review article is substantively updated in a later issue, NLM will create a new bibliographic citation for the updated review. The citations for the original review article and the updated review article are linked via the Update in and Update of fields which are part of the Comments/Corrections family of fields.

In PubMed, the Update in and Update of fields display as links on the Abstract and Citation formats. These links take you directly to the other record in PubMed, making it easy to move between associated citations. The fields also display on the MEDLINE format, although not as links. The Update in link will eventually display on the Summary format. See Figure 1 and Figure 2 for examples of Update in and Update of links, respectively, in the Abstract format. Please see the article, PubMed/MEDLINE Available with 2002 MeSH and Two Changes. NLM Tech Bull. 2002 Jan-Feb;(324):e2, for more information on Comments/Corrections.

  Update in Link
  Update of Link

Obtaining the Full Text of a Cochrane Review
As with all MEDLINE citations, the Cochrane Reviews citations include bibliographic information and abstracts only, not the full text of the article. There are two ways to get the full text of a Cochrane Review article:

  1. Loansome Doc - order full text copies of the review articles from a medical library. Contact your Regional Medical Library for more information. Be advised that because of Cochrane's licensing policies, your participating library may not be able to fill your request so it is a good idea for your request to also include NLM. NLM fills all requests for Cochrane materials by mail regardless of the delivery method you request.
  2. The Cochrane Library - order full text articles directly from the Cochrane Library Web site. Choose Document Delivery from the menu for more information.

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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Included in MEDLINE®. NLM Tech Bull. 2002 Jan-Feb;(324):e6.


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