Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Resources

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This page outlines external resources useful for writing medicine related articles. It complements Wikipedia:Reliable sources (medicine-related articles) which explains how to determine ideal sourcing.

For a one page handout on how to edit Wikipedia's content see: WP:MED/How to edit

Useful resources[edit]

Source url Comments
TRIP Database This resource is useful to find references suitable for Wikipedia as it breaks the literature down into secondary sources versus primary sources. It searches the Cochrane Library and many other databases containing systematic reviews, medical guidelines, and evidence-based synopses among others. TRIP Answers is a website related to the TRIP Database which aims to answer clinical questions directly.
Pubmed A large collection that includes more than 22 million citations and abstracts and tens of thousands of links to the full-text articles. If desired by the user, search results can be limited to show only review articles, full-text articles freely available to the public, or studies from some 120 "Core Clinical" journals (they are all English-language journals). Results are also sortable by publication date. The PubMed identifiers (PMIDs) can be used with the "cite" button found at the top of the edit window. On the left side of a Pubmed abstract you will find filters for "Article types" and you can select "Reviews" there; you can also filter by "Text availability". Pubmed abstracts also have a field called "Publication Type" at the bottom, that shows how Pubmed has classified the study; check to see if the source is a review or not, before using it.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Reliable source for public-domain information, especially for infectious diseases. Also has a library of copyright-free images.
NCBI bookshelf Free access to over 700 health-science textbooks
Google Scholar A Google search portal limited to scholarly work (including not only medicine, but also legal articles and patents). Allows easy access to many University and Institutional online collections (with proper affiliation). A useful feature of Google Scholar is "Cited by...", showing who else has cited a particular paper.
Google Books Makes available free, limited views of a number of medical textbooks. ISBNs are available, aiding referencing.
Uptodate Subscription required. Consists mainly of narrative overviews on a wide range of clinical topics, but access issues generally limit its utility. It includes some images and imported PubMed abstracts. 40% of UpToDate's content is updated every 4 months. Trial access may be obtained here.
DynaMed Subscription required. Provides evidence-based topic overviews and summaries, with plenty of links to the full text of key published clinical evidence, including international guidelines. It also includes live links to PubMed. Trial access may be obtained here.
Emedicine Also known as Medscape Reference. Free, but registration is required. Not the best source of content, with concerns that advertising affects its reliability.
Cochrane collaboration Perhaps the foremost evidence-based group. Complete access to their collections is available in many countries.

Also produces the Cochrane Library.

NICE The guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in the UK.
PLoS Journals A collection of open-source scientific journals, including PLoS Medicine
SIGN The guidelines from the Scottish Intercollegiate Guideline Network in the UK.
World Health Organization Fact sheets from the WHO.
EB medicine Excellent reviews of emergency-medicine topics. Issues more than 3 years old are freely available to the public.
USPSTF Thorough evidence-based evaluations of medical topics by the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF)

Other useful Search Engines include:

  • NHS Evidence: Search portal for health and social care produced by National Institute for Health and Care Excellence for NHS England. Includes a one-stop search engine covering a wide range of sources, including the Cochrane Library, British National Formulary, and UK and international guidelines. Much of the content of NHS Evidence is free to view, but access to certain sections (e.g. many full-text journals and the databases AMED, BNI, CINAHL, EMBASE, Health Business Elite, MEDLINE and PsycINFO) requires a NHS Athens username & password – see the NHS Athens eligibility criteria here
  • Prodigy Knowledge (previously known as Clinical Knowledge Summaries - CKS) is aimed at clinicians in primary care. It provides reliable evidence-based information and practical "know how" about the common conditions managed in primary care.
  • EMBASE: A high-quality medical index that often generates better results than PubMed. It is proprietary and requires a paid subscription.
  • CINAHL: A proprietary index focusing on nursing and allied health care. It requires a paid subscription.


Most images from the internet are copyrighted and should not be used in Wikipedia.

The NIH has an search engine for open images here. Use with care.

Non-suitable images[edit]

  • Medlineplus [1]: even though it is a US government source, it uses images that may be copyrighted by others.
  • Other sources in the ".gov" domain may use images from istock photos, and such images may not be in the public domain.

Historical documents[edit]

Documents published before 1923 are, in most cases, not copyrighted. While many of these documents are outdated, they can still be of great utility in supplementing "History" sections of certain medical articles. Also, historical images can still depict symptoms of diseases, normal anatomy, and other features quite accurately.

Possible sources of useful images and text of historical interest include: