WEBTREATS: Searching The Cochrane Library on Wiley InterScience

This WebTreat - Searching the Cochrane Librarary, prepared by Resource Center Librarians from other sources, is provided for information only.  Referral to these sites does not imply the endorsement of The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of either the organization or their contents, expressed views, programs, or political activities. Further, the College does not endorse any commercial products that may be advertised or available from these organizations or on these websites. This list is not meant to be comprehensive; the exclusion of a site does not reflect the quality of that site.  Please note that sites and URLs are subject to change without warning. Many of these pages provide basic information but have links with more detailed information and resources.  Please also refer to the WEBTREAT on Evidence-Based Medicine for related links. mash 4/14/2016

What are the Cochrane Collaboration and The Cochrane Library?

The Cochrane Collaboration is an international not-for-profit independent organization, dedicated to making up-to-date, accurate information about the effects of healthcare readily available worldwide. It produces and disseminates systematic reviews of healthcare interventions and promotes the search for evidence in the form of clinical trials and other studies of interventions.  The Cochrane Library includes these Cochrane reviews and several other evidence-based databases.  Searching The Cochrane Library on Wiley InterScience via the ACOG website can be a useful tool for finding systematic reviews and clinical trials relevant to patient care.

Databases available on The Cochrane Library are as follows:

  • Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (Cochrane Reviews)
  • Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (Other Reviews)
  • Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Clinical Trials)
  • Cochrane Methodology Register (Methods Studies)
  • Health Technology Assessment Database (Technology Assessments)
  • NHS Economic Evaluation Database (Economic Evaluations)

Getting help:

Use the How to Use Guide on The Cochrane Library or the Cochrane Library Search Manual.

Tutorials are available from Wiley on using The Cochrane Library.   Guest registration is required to access them. Go to:

The Cochrane Library – an introduction

Tips on Advanced and MeSH searching

Saving Searches and Setting Alerts

Logging on to The Cochrane Library through ACOG’s website:

Login to the members’ side of the ACOG website then select Resources and Publications on the menu bar, then select the Articles and Resources link, then select Search Cochrane Library.

Wiley hint: Create a Profile

Wiley suggests creating a personal profile at registration provides a number of benefits. You can save your search strategies for future use to find updates and changes.  You can modify your search strategies and save them again in your profile.  You can also Activate Alerts to be alerted by e-mail to changes.

After logging on to The Cochrane Library, select “My Profile” at the top right of the page.  Then select Register Now.  Complete the New User Registration form and submit registration.  After you receive an authentication e-mail,  you can activate your profile and sign up for some additional features.

Searching Cochrane:

Using the Browse feature provides views of all Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews by topic.  With other Browse options you can view New Reviews, Updated A-Z Protocols, Updated A-Z by Group, Topics by Group. You can also browse the other databases available in The Cochrane Library.

Quick Search allows you to enter your terms in the Search box.  A quick search by default searches title, abstract or keywords.  You are also able to change the options by clicking on the pull-down menu.

Advanced Search allows you to refine your search in a number of ways.  You can use the pull-down menus to limit your search by field.  Advanced search allows for the use of Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT).  Use * to truncate your terms to search for “wild card” variations.  You can refine your search by selecting which database(s) you wish to search.  You can also restrict your search to the type of records you would like to retrieve, date, and other features.

A MeSH Search  will map your term to the MeSH hierarchy and allow you to view related terms.  A MeSH Search helps you select appropriate subject headings and also provides a clear definition of the MeSH terms you are using.

The Search History feature provides you with a history of the search statements you have added in your current session.  Here you can  refine your search strategy by combining search statements.  Each statement is given a number #2, #3, #4, etc.  To combine the statements enter the # symbol followed by the search statement number.  The combined searches are displayed in the search history.  You can limit your search results to type of review,  record status, and range of years. 

Viewing and Saving Results: 

If you used Quick Search or Advanced Search, you will automatically see the search results page.  If you used the Search History page, you will need to select the search statement line with your results to get to the search results page.   On the Search Results page, you can view your results from each database by toggling between the databases.   Short records of up to 25 titles  are displayed per page.  The full Cochrane Library records can be viewed in HTML formats; Cochrane systematic review can also be displayed in PDF.  You can export all or selected records from each database.

Saving Your Search Statement for Future Use:

Make sure that you are logged in to your personal profile.  Go to the search history page, where your current search strategy will be displayed.  Select Save Strategy.  You will see a new screen prompting you to name your search strategy, provide comments, and save the strategy.  The next time you use Cochrane, login to your personal profile, then select saved search strategies.  The strategy that you saved should be available to you.


If you have questions about search strategies, search results, or any other issues, please contact the College Resource Center for information.  The Resource Center can be reached at resources@acog.org.


Mary Hyde
Senior Director

Beth DeFrancis Sun
Special Collections Librarian

Jean Riedlinger
Reference Librarian


American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
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Mailing Address: PO Box 96920, Washington, DC 20024-9998