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FAQ: Index Medicus Chronology

Question: How do I find older medical journal articles?


To identify articles published from:

  • 1946 - present, search PubMed®. Your retrieval will include both MEDLINE® and OLDMEDLINE records, as well as some other citations not indexed with Medical Subject Headings (MeSH®). See OLDMEDLINE Data for coverage details about the pre-1966 citations that are not comprehensive for that time period.
  • Before 1946, there are a small number of citations included in PMC: PubMed Central, searchable via PubMed.  Otherwise, there are no online sources from NLM except for IndexCat™. You need to use Index Medicus® and the other print sources that are described below. These sources can be found at many medical and large university libraries. Note: Index Medicus® ceased hard copy publication with the Dec 2004 edition (Volume 45).

Index Medicus (IM) 1879 - 1926 ZW1 I383 45 volumes in 3 series; 1879-1899, 1903-1920 including war supplement 1914-1917, 1921-1926 Edited by John Shaw Billings, Robert Fletcher, et al.; Published by F. Leypoldt, Carnegie Institution, etc. Journals, books, pamphlets indexed; Subject arrangement with author indexes; intended to supplement the Index-Catalog, contains some material not in the Index-Catalog.
Bibliographia medica 1900 - 1902 ZW1 B5836 3 volumes Edited by Marcel Baudouin; Published by Institut de Bibliographie, Paris Publication of Index Medicus was suspended from 1899-1902. In the interval, a similar index was issued in Paris by the Institut de bibliographie. In French.
Index-Catalog of the Library of the Surgeon-General's Office (ICLSGO)
1880 - 1961 Z 675 .M4 I38 61 volumes in 5 series; 1880-1895, 1896-1916, 1913-1932, 1936-1955, 1959-1961 Library of Surgeon-General's Office, Army Medical Library, Armed Forces Medical Library, and GPO (Government Publishing Office) Journals, books, pamphlets, theses indexed; Journal articles listed only under subject; Subject-author arrangement each series A-Z, except Series 4 which is A-Mn only. Series 5 excludes journal articles and was published in 3 volumes: Volume 2 is in A-Z subject arrangement.
Quarterly Cumulative Index to Current Literature (QCICL) 1916 - 1926 ZW1 Q4 12 volumes American Medical Association Journal articles indexed; lists of new books, publishers, new gov't pubs; aimed at English-speaking, clinical, American doctors; alphabetical dictionary arrangement.
Quarterly Cumulative Index Medicus (QCIM) 1927 - 1956 ZW1 Q3 60 volumes American Medical Association; Carnegie Institute helped finance 1927-1931 Journal articles indexed; list of books and publishers; dictionary arrangement.
Current List of Medical Literature (CLML) 1941-1959 ZW1 C969 36 volumes Army Medical Library; Armed Forces Medical Library Journal articles indexed; table of contents arrangement with author, subject indexes; use jointly with QCIM since indexed Journals not the same; 1957-1959 the ONLY index.
Index Medicus/ Cumulated Index Medicus (IM/CIM)

1960 -2004

ZW1 I384 1960-2004, 45 volumes Index Medicus: NLM ;
Cumulated Index Medicus: American Medical Association (1960-1964), NLM (1965- 2004) [GPO]
Searchable on PubMed. Monthly issues with annual cumulations; subject, author indexes with complete entry under each. Publication ceased with December 2004 edition (Volume 45).

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