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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (EBSCO): Search Strategy

Learn how to effectively use Cochrane to find systematic reviews of evidence in nursing and medicine useful for Evidence Based Practice.

Where should I start?

Start Line

The Advanced Search page is a great place to start because:

  • It can do more than one type of search at a time
  • It has several limiting features which help make searches more effective

What are the best search strategies to use?

Can I Use quotation marks to search multiple words as a phrase?

Quotation marks aren't needed; this database automatically searches multiple terms as a phrase.

Using the following techniques will greatly facilitate your searching:

  • Start with a simple search on an intervention or outcome central to your research. Remember, there are only 4000 total reviews here.

    Example:  deep vein thrombosis
  •  Broaden the search by using OR
     (Separate search words with OR and enclose in parentheses if all terms are on one line.)

    Example:  deep vein thrombosis OR venous thrombosis 
  •  Narrow the search using AND to combine terms (this will not often be necessary in Cochrane)

      thrombosis and surgical patients
    (This search will find articles that contain both terms)