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Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Xue Bao. 2010 Apr;8(4):379-84. doi: 10.3736/jcim20100414.

[A bibliometric overview of traditional Chinese medicine research in Medline].

[Article in Chinese]

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Research Center for Strategic Science and Technology Issue, Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China, Beijing 100038, China.



To analyze the publication activity in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and learn more about the development and perspective of TCM as well as its subfields.


TCM-related publications (from 1964 to 2008) indexed in Medline were analyzed, including publication number and proportion of TCM papers, TCM clinical research papers, papers in TCM subfields such as Chinese medicine, Chinese herbs and acupuncture. We also analyzed the journals in which they got published.


A total of 34 528 TCM-related papers were indexed in Medline from 1964 to 2008. The number and proportion of publication in Medline were increased steadily. TCM articles have changed towards clinical-oriented research, especially in complementary therapies and acupuncture subfields. Before 1973 the popular content of TCM articles was acupuncture, but at present it changed to Chinese herbs. TCM papers were found in core clinical journals, specialized complementary journals and non-core journals, the last one was the majority.


The publication activity of TCM literature increased rapidly since 1970s. TCM attracts more and more attentions and researchers. The safety and efficacy of TCM have been tried to identify by conducting modern scientific researches.

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