Skip Navigation Bar

FAQ: NLM® LocatorPlus® - Wildcard Characters


Question: Is it possible to use wildcards or other special characters when I search LocatorPlus?





Wildcard characters and other special characters you can use are:

Question mark (?)

  • The question mark can substitute for zero, one, or more characters at the beginning, middle, or end of the term.
  • The question mark wildcard does not work in Z39.50 searches of LocatorPlus.


neuro?pharmacology neuropharmacology, neuropsychopharmacology
h?ematology hematology or haematology
?clinic clinic, polyclinic, multiclinic, teleclinic, etc.
clinic? clinic, clinics, clinical, clinician, clinicians, etc.


Percent (%)

  • The percent sign can be used at the beginning, middle, or end of a search term.
  • Each percent sign represents one character in the term.
  • The percent sign wildcard does not work in Z39.50.


wom%n woman or women
clinic% clinics, clinica, clinico, etc.
clinic%%% clinician, clinicals, etc.


Asterisk (*)

  • Use an asterisk before a term to weight it as important. Example: *therapy
  • Note: You cannot use the asterisk as a wildcard in LocatorPlus because it is used in Voyager to increase the relevance of a term.

Plus sign (+) - The term is an essential term. Example: +leukemia

Quotation marks ("") - Use double quotes to enclose a phrase. Example: "popular works"

Example of Keyword Anywhere search using several special characters: child? "popular works" +leukemia *therapy

Return to top | Return to LocatorPlus FAQs