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Unified Medical Language System® (UMLS®)

Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine Source Information

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The Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine (SNOMED®), Second Edition was developed by the College of American Pathologists. SNOMED intellectual property rights were transferred to the IHTSDO (International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation).

SNOMED is a comprehensive nomenclature used to capture patient encounters in electronic health systems.

SNOMED concepts are organized into seven axes. The seven axes are:

  1. Topography
  2. Morphology
  3. Etiology
  4. Function
  5. Disease
  6. Procedure
  7. Occupation

SNOMED has been superseded by the Systemized Nomenclature of Human and Veterinary Medicine: SNOMED International, and then by the Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine – Reference Terminology (SNOMED RT®). SNOMED RT has been merged with Clinical Terms Version 3 (CTV3), also known as Read Codes, resulting in the creation of SNOMED –Clinical Terms (SNOMED CT®). For more information about SNOMED CT in the Metathesaurus, see the SNOMED CT source synopsis.

SNOMED is used by clinicians, nurses, researchers, and other health professionals.

Metathesaurus Update Frequency
SNOMED was last updated in the Metathesaurus in 1991.

Sites Consulted

  1. Côté RA, Robboy S. Progress in medical information management. Systematized nomenclature of medicine (SNOMED). JAMA [Internet]. 1980 Feb [cited 2010 April 9]; 243(8):756-62. Available from: