Re-sort PubMed Results to Reveal Hidden Gems

Did you know that you can re-sort the results of your PubMed search?  The default results view is known as the Summary view, showing the bare bones information, with the most recent publication at the top of the list.

There are some hidden benefits to re-sorting your results, especially if you have a large list of results.

Find possible “thought leaders” on your topic

- This works best when you have a large set of results. When re-sorting by First Author, you are looking for anyone who has more publications that are related to your search topic.  Thus, they can be considered a possible “thought leader” or expert in this area of research.

EXTRA TIP: You may want to re-sort by Last Author as well to see who has overseen a lot of research on your topic.

EXTRA TIP: In  a PubMed citation, you can click on the author’s name, which should be hyperlinked.  You will then get a list of their other publications in PubMed.  This can be a fast way to scope out the big players in this field of research.

Find journals that publish more frequently on your research topic

- When re-sorting by Journal, you are looking for journals that occur more frequently to give you clues of where more people are getting their work published on your research topic

- With this information, you may consider eventually submitting your manuscript for publication to these particular journals.  You can also keep in mind to search this journal more often for topics related to your research.

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About Josephine

Josephine left UCSF in spring of 2012. Previously, she had been Education & Information Consultant, Clinical Sciences
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2 Responses to Re-sort PubMed Results to Reveal Hidden Gems

  1. Susan Hughes says:

    Regarding the extra tip of clicking on an author’s name, this will result in all publications by people that exactly match last name and whatever initials are used – not necessarily one individual. If you take those results and add the city (or other distiguishing feature) to the search terms you should get closer to an individual’s body of work.

  2. Josephine says:

    Thanks for clarifying that with your excellent tip! Yes, by all means, that will be a good way of flushing out the unrelated authors.

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