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Veterinary Medicine

Systematic & Other Reviews in Veterinary Medicine

This section lists resources for people interested in undertaking a systematic, scoping, or other review in Veterinary Medicine. Because we have other guides for systematic reviews, this page directs you to those, and only lists supplementary information and resources specific to veterinary medicine here.

Before you begin, it is worth considering whether a systematic review is really a good method for your purposes, or whether a narrative review would be more appropriate.  

Please contact the Vet Med librarian if you would like a consultation around literature searching for your systematic review.

Veterinary-specific literature on systematic and scoping reviews

O’Connor A, Sargeant J. Research synthesis in veterinary science: Narrative reviews, systematic reviews and meta-analysis. The Veterinary Journal 2015;206:261–7.

Sargeant JM, O’Connor AM. Scoping Reviews, Systematic Reviews, and Meta-Analysis: Applications in Veterinary Medicine. Front Vet Sci 2020;7:11.

Sargeant JM, O’Connor AM. Introduction to Systematic Reviews in Animal Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine. Zoonoses and Public Health 2014;61:3–9.

Haddaway NR, Watson MJ. On the benefits of systematic reviews for wildlife parasitology. International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife 2016;5:184–91.

Training and guidance materials (non-UofC):

  • MEDLINE - the largest index to the medical literature. Coverage includes some but not all veterinary journals. Note that this is the same content as PubMed; it is not necessary to search both. MEDLINE on the Ovid platform allows for construction of a more structured search.
  • Embase - probably only necessary to search if the research question has a human health component - i.e. zoonoses, antimicrobial resistance
  • CAB Abstracts - the major index to the agricultural and animal science literature. Covers much of the veterinary literature that is not covered in MEDLINE. 
  • BIOSIS Previews: the major index to the life sciences literature. Search if you suspect your literature will encompass wildlife/zoology.
  • Web of Science Core Collection: multi-disciplinary literature database. Useful to supplement your other database searches, and for identifying conference proceedings.

These slides are from a 3-session workshop on knowledge synthesis in veterinary medicine, delivered in spring 2022.