Subject-specific databases

Which subject-specific databases to search in addition to CENTRAL, MEDLINE and EMBASE will be influenced by the topic of the review, access to specific databases and budget considerations. Most of the main subject-specific databases are available only on a subscription or ‘pay-as-you-go’ basis. Access to databases is therefore likely to be limited to those databases that are available to the Trials Search Co-ordinator at the CRG editorial base and those that are available at the institutions of the review authors. A selection of the main subject-specific databases that are more likely to be available through institutional subscriptions (and therefore ‘free at the point of use’) or are available free of charge on the internet are listed in Box 6.2.b, together with web addresses for further information. Access details vary according to institution. Review authors should seek advice from their local healthcare librarian for access at their institution.


In addition to subject-specific databases, general search engines include:

·         Google Scholar (free on the internet):

o        scholar.google.com/advanced_scholar_search

·         Intute (free on the internet):

o        www.intute.ac.uk/

·         Turning Research into Practice (TRIP) database (evidence-based healthcare resource) (free on the internet):

o        www.tripdatabase.com/