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Some databases will find the exact word or phrase, so make sure your spelling is accurate or you will miss references.If you want words to appear next to each other in an exact phrase, use quotation marks, eg “self-esteem”.
This finds more papers than "physician relationship".
Using this adjacency retrieves papers with phrases like "physician patient relationship", "patient physician relationship", "relationship of the physician to the patient" and so on.
You can specify how close two words appear together in your search strategy.
This can make your results more relevant; generally the closer two words appear to each other, the closer the relationship is between them.
The next sections show some techniques you can use to develop your search strategy.
Skip straight to: Concepts can be expressed in different ways eg “self-esteem” might be referred to as “self-worth”.Many databases use an asterisk (*) as their truncation symbol.Check the database help section if you are not sure which symbol to use.Using appropriate subject headings enhances your search and will help you to find more results on your topic.This is because subject headings find articles according to their subject, even if the article does not use your chosen key words.Commands for adjacency searching differ among databases, so make sure you consult database guides.In Ovid SP databases (like Medline), searching for “physician ADJ3 relationship” will find both physician and relationship within two major words of each other, in any order.The example shows the subject heading and keyword searches that have been carried out for each concept within our research question and how they have been combined using Boolean operators.It also shows where keyword techniques like truncation, wildcards and adjacency searching have been used.For example, “therap*” will find therapy, therapies, therapist or therapists. Use it to search for a single character, or no character.Check the database help section to see which symbol to use as a wildcard.