MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) are useful if you're not quite sure where to start your search or have a very broad topic. For example, using the MeSH "Myocardial Infarction" will search for articles with both "myocardial infarction" and "heart attack."
You'll notice that following screenshots say CINAHL - not MeSH. The process for searching for MeSh and CINAHL Headings in EBSCO is identical. If you learn one, you've got the other down too!
STEP 1: Choose "MeSH" on the top menu and enter your search term (tylenol.)
STEP 2: Select Your Terms and Subheadings. Hit the big green "Search Database" button.
Things to note:
- The search for "tylenol" redirected to the heading "Acetaminophen."
- You can narrow further by choosing a subheading. In this case: "Adverse Effects"
- If you don't understand a term, click the scope note (small yellow dialog boxes) to get a definition.
- What does "Explode" mean?
- MeSH will search for the headings listed under Acetaminophen (Broadens search)
- What does "Major Concept" mean?
- Checking that box, will restrict results to articles where subject heading is the main topic (Narrows Search)
- If you can add more terms using "Browse Addition Terms." *This feature appears at the very bottom of the search results of subject headings. It can be annoying to find, but it is there.*
STEP 3: View your Results
- Notice that the search has been translated to (MH "Acetaminophen/AE.") The /AE is the adverse effects subheading.
- View the article by selecting PDF or HTML Full-Text
- Don't forget about the left-hand menu to narrow your results
- It takes time to build searches. If you want to save your search, you can create a free account.
STEP 4: View an Article
- To view an article in the search results, click the title to get more detailed results.
- On the left, look for full-text PDF and/or HTML options if they are available.
- Look for Source: to see the journal or book that your articles is from.
- If you click the title of the journal, you can see where the journal is published!
- Look for the Cite button to automatically generate a citation for your bibliography. Double check it for accuracy!
- Look at Major Subjects: for ideas for key words. Click on a subject heading to a run a new search with that term.