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Table 1 Example of a search strategy for MEDLINE

From: Identification of behaviour change components in swallowing interventions for head and neck cancer patients: protocol for a systematic review

Search history
Evidence Services | library.nhs.uk
1. MEDLINE; exp DEGLUTITION/OR exp DEGLUTITION DISORDERS/; 47,421 results.
2. MEDLINE; (deglutition OR swallow* OR dysphagi*).ti,ab; 36,529 results.
3. MEDLINE; exp HEAD AND NECK NEOPLASMS/; 246,253 results.
4. MEDLINE; (‘head and neck’ OR otorhinolaryng* OR ‘head neck’ OR ‘head-neck’ OR oral OR oropharyn* OR hypopharyn* OR laryn* OR nasopharyn* OR pharyn* OR throat OR mouth OR HNSCC OR SCCHN).ti,ab; 658,144 results.
5. MEDLINE; (cancer* OR carcinoma* OR neoplas* OR tumor* OR tumour* OR malignan* OR SCCA).ti,ab; 2,319,509 results.
6. MEDLINE; exp REHABILITATION/; 153,977 results.
7. MEDLINE; exp BEHAVIOR/; 1,232,359 results.
8. MEDLINE; (therap* OR rehabilitation OR exercise* OR behav* OR "swallowing training").ti,ab; 2,913,323 results. 9. MEDLINE; 1 OR 2; 67,740 results.
10. MEDLINE; 4 AND 5; 143,824 results.
11. MEDLINE; 3 OR 10; 310,277 results.
12. MEDLINE; 6 OR 7 OR 8; 3,852,180 results.
13. MEDLINE; 9 AND 11 AND 12; 3060 results.
14. MEDLINE; 13 [Limit to: (Publication Types Clinical Trial, All or Systematic Reviews)]; 258 results.
15. MEDLINE; (esophag* OR oesophag* OR brain).ti; 345,597 results.
16. MEDLINE; *ESOPHAGEAL NEOPLASMS/; 32,758 results.
17. MEDLINE; 15 OR 16; 349,564 results.
18. MEDLINE; 14 not 17 [Limit to: (Publication Types Clinical Trial, All or Systematic Reviews)]; 151 results.
19. MEDLINE; 18 [Limit to: English Language and (Publication Types Clinical Trial, All or Systematic Reviews)]; 140 results.
20. MEDLINE; (rehabilitation OR exercise* OR behav* OR "swallowing training").ti,ab; 1,125,728 results.
21. MEDLINE; exp EXERCISE THERAPY/; 31,541 results.
22. MEDLINE; exp BEHAVIOR/ OR exp REHABILITATION/; 1,355,478 results.
23. MEDLINE; 20 OR 21 OR 22; 2,136,331 results.
24. MEDLINE; 9 AND 11 AND 23; 1096 results.
25. MEDLINE; 24 [Limit to: English Language and (Publication Types Clinical Trial, All or Systematic Reviews)]; 101 results.
26. MEDLINE; 25 not 17 [Limit to: English Language and (Publication Types Clinical Trial, All or Systematic Reviews)]; 90 results.