McGoogan News

Embase vs Medline: which should I use?

By Roxanne Cox

Combined Embase and Medline searches yield more articles than searching either Embase or Medline alone. Searchers who rely on only one database will miss relevant information.

Embase, an Elsevier database has a broad biomedical base with in-depth coverage of drugs and pharmacology as well as medical devices. Embase, which includes Medline, has 30+ million records from 8500 journals including six million record from 2700 journals not covered by Medline. It has over 71, 000 subject headings of which more than 30,000 are drugs and chemicals and it indexes over 300,000 conference abstracts beginning in 2009. Embase has more European journals not covered by PubMed, more non-English journals, and more drug therapy journals.

Embase also has extensive limiting options including routes of drug administration, drug trade names, drug manufactures device trade names as well as study types, age groups, and publication years.

There are also specific search options for drugs, disease, or devices, as well as a basic and advanced search options. You can also take advantage of searching for terms that are next to or near one another, thus taking advantage of the implied relationship between the terms.

PubMed/Medline contains over 25 million records from over 5,600 biomedical journals with Medline, a subset of PubMed. Medline comprises approximately 98% of PubMed. Medline covers areas of medicine, dentistry, nursing, allied health, and veterinary medicine. Medline uses MeSH to index records providing more subject/ subheading combinations than Embase providing more specific search results.

Wilkins, T., Gillies, R. A., & Davies, K. (2005). EMBASE versus MEDLINE for family medicine searches: Can MEDLINE searches find the forest or a tree? Canadian Family Physician Medecin De Famille Canadien, 51, 848-849.

 

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