Archive for September, 2007

World-wise librarian replaced by World Wide Web

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007

An editorial in this month’s issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (2007 Sep 15;120(4):1077-8, pubmed) discusses the “changing role of the library in plastic surgery.”

…This same librarian, it seemed, had an endless knowledge of reference texts, authors, and journal titles. Dewey decimal system aside, the librarian was truly an endless resource who garnered much attention and respect.

Now, it seems that times have changed. User access codes and online resources have replaced library cards. On a recent visit to the library, the senior author was surprised to find that the “attendant” behind the counter could do little more than give directions to an information specialist via telephone, who subsequently gave directions to an online access catalog; one needed to obtain a user number for such online access. Initially, this proved a frustrating endeavor, but things did work out. It seems the world-wise librarian had been replaced by the World Wide Web.

Ever feel this way? Don’t forget that our reference staff is here to guide you to the information you need–in person, or online, with usernames or with a walk to the journal stacks. Oh, and Scott Library makes Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery available to all Jefferson readers; get the full article here.

–your librarians (still here, ready to help you find what you need!)

The Cancer Treatment Revolution by David Nathan

Friday, September 21st, 2007

Cancer Treatment RevolutionProminent cancer researcher David G. Nathan’s latest is on the new bookshelf this week. Here’s Dr. Allen S. Lichter writing in the Sept. 6 New England Journal of Medicine:

Oncology is a relatively young field. Although surgical and radiation treatments for cancer have long histories, the development of effective anticancer drugs began just 50 years ago. David Nathan is among the physicians who have witnessed the entire field unfold, from the earliest experiences with single agents to the current efforts to develop therapies that work at the molecular level. In his new book, he recounts the progress that has been made in the treatment of cancer, with special emphasis on “smart drugs” — agents that target the specific molecular causes of cancer. [full book review via JEFFLINE]

More books by Dr. Nathan are available in the library.

Observational studies vs. Clinical trials

Wednesday, September 19th, 2007

In Sunday’s New York Times Magazine (Do we really know what makes us healthy?, Sept 17), Gary Traubes provides a highly readable exploration of the place of observational studies vs. clinical trials. Using the example of hormone replacement therapy (H.R.T.), he traces the Nurses’ Health Study, a cohort study that established the protective power of estrogen, through the subsequent Heart and Estrogen-progestin Replacement Study (HERS) and Women’s Health Initiative (W.H.I.) clinical trials that reversed it.

When searching for literature, MEDLINE provides tools to target these different types of studies.


OVID Alert Formats

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

It seems that some OVID alert formats are not readable by those using the hospital email system. If you are setting up an alert that will be sent to the address, please use the ASCII format as an attachment for the delivery option. That one seems to work.

New APA and AMA styles embrace the DOI

Friday, September 14th, 2007

doiNeed to pull an article based on a citation that has a DOI instead of a standard web address? Use or

The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) is a more stable identifier than the web address (URL). You may have noticied them in journals before, but expect to see them in citations now that the American Psychological Association (APA) and the American Medical Association (AMA) recommend their use in their style guides. (more…)