Medical databases give you the power to conduct very specific or complex searches.
Use special techniques combine search words in search boxes to effectively find the info you need:
Example scenario: What are some nursing considerations for pregnant women with high blood pressure?
See below for example search construction based on that scenario:
To start your research, type into the database the search word(s) that describe your topic. Example: “high blood pressure”
• Option – Use AND to connect your ideas and focus your search:
“high blood pressure” AND pregnancy
• Option – Use quotation marks to keep a phrase together in your search:
“high blood pressure”
• Option - In the same box, use OR to expand your search to synonyms or related ideas:
pregnancy OR prenatal
• Option – Use an asterisk to find word variations.
Example nurs* finds nurse, nurses, nursing, nurse practitioner
Use a similar same technique as constructing a search in a medical database:
Click to enlarge image:
Option – Use AND to connect your ideas and focus your search: “high blood pressure” AND pregnancy
• Option – Use quotation marks to keep a phrase together in your search: “high blood pressure”
• Option - Within parenthesis, use OR to expand your search to synonyms or related ideas: pregnancy OR prenatal
• Note – Google generally finds variants of words by default.
Choose one topic below. Practice constructing a search from that scenario:
What are some nursing considerations for elderly patients who receive the flu vaccine?
How might nurses help with depression that often affects stroke patients?
What should nurses be aware of when treating veterans with PTSD?
Create your own nursing scenario that interests you!
Who is your patient? Identify a disease, health status, age, race, geographic region, sex, or a specific characteristic important to your question.
Example: stroke patients
What do you plan to do for the patient? Identify a specific test, therapy, medication or management strategy.
Example: virtual reality, occupational therapy
What is the alternative to your plan? Examples may include: no treatment or a different type of treatment.
Example: non-VR (or option to have no comparison)
What outcome do you seek? Identify possible outcomes/results of the intervention such as less symptoms, no symptoms, or better quality of life...etc.
Example: rehabilitation, flexibility, mental health
What is the time frame? What study types will most likely have the information you seek?
Example: systematic review