Topical Subheadings

There are 68 topical subheadings that can be linked to CINAHL subject headings. CINAHL subject headings can be modified by the addition of these subheadings, thereby providing more specific access.

It is Cinahl's policy to assign up to three separate subheadings to a single subject heading. If more than three are required to cover the article adequately, the heading will be assigned as a major term without any subheadings. The appropriate subheadings may then be assigned to a minor subject heading.

Not all subheadings can be used with all subject headings; for example, the subheading "/prevention and control" is meaningless linked to the subject heading NURSING PROTOCOLS. The tree numbers of subject headings with which a particular subheading can be combined are identified in parentheses in the topical subheadings list.

Subheadings may be searched in full or with two-letter codes. Although many of the codes match the MeSH subheading abbreviations, there are exceptions, so it would be advisable to check first.

The year the subheading was established is indicated in parentheses. If nothing is indicated, the subheading was added prior to 1983.

In order to avoid incorrect subject heading/subheading combinations, check the Thesaurus scope notes before selecting search terms. Articles will be found under the term NURSING COSTS but not under NURSING CARE/economics.

ABNORMALITIES or AB (83) - Used with organs, regions, and tissues for congenital defects. (A1-10, A14)
ADMINISTRATION  or AM - Used for administrative structure and management. Use only for selected headings in the I2 tree. (I2, L, N2-4)
ADMINISTRATION AND DOSAGE or AD - Used with drugs and selected plant products for dosage forms, routes of administration, frequency and duration of administration, quantity of medication, and the effects of these factors. (B6, D)
ADVERSE EFFECTS or AE - Used with drugs, chemicals, plants, and manufactured products for undesirable reactions occurring in normal usage or accepted dosage. Also used for adverse effects or complications of diagnostic, therapeutic, anesthetic, surgical, or other procedures. Excludes contraindications for which "contraindications" is used. Excludes poisoning for which "poisoning" is used. (B6, D, E, F4, G3, H, I3, J)
ANALOGS AND DERIVATIVES or AA (92) - Used with drugs and chemicals for substances that share the same parent molecule or have similar electronic structures but differ by the addition or substitution of other atoms or molecules. It is used when the specific chemical heading is not available.  (D3, D6, D14-18, D20-23)
ANALYSIS or AN - Used for the identification or quantitative determination of a substance or its constituents and metabolites, and the chemical analysis of tissues, tumors, body fluids (except for blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and urine), food, organisms, and plants. Includes the analysis of air, water, or other environmental carriers. The concept applies to both methodology and results. For analysis of substances in the blood, cerebrospinal fluid, or urine the specific subheading designating the fluid is used. (A2-16, B1, B3-6, C4, D, G3, J2)
ANATOMY AND HISTOLOGY or AH (83) - Used with organs, regions, and tissues for normal descriptive anatomy and histology. (A1-10, A14-16, B2, B6)
ANTAGONISTS AND INHIBITORS or AI (85) - Used with chemicals, drugs, and endogenous substances to indicate substances or agents which counteract their biological effects by any mechanism. (D1-23)
BLOOD or BL (99) - Used for the presence or analysis of substances in the blood; also for examination of, or changes in, the blood in disease state. It excludes serodiagnosis, for which the subheading "diagnosis" is used, and serology, for which "immunology" is used. (B2, C, D1-24, F3)
BLOOD SUPPLY or BS (02) - Used for arterial, capillary, and venous systems of an organ or region if the specific heading for the vessel does not exist. It includes blood flow through the organ. (A1-5, A8-10, A14, C4)
CEREBROSPINAL FLUID or CF (04) - Used for the presence or analysis of substances in the cerebrospinal fluid; also for examination of or changes in cerebrospinal fluid in disease states. (B2, C, D1-24, F3)
CHEMICALLY INDUCED or CI (83) - Used with diseases, syndromes, abnormalities, or symptoms caused by chemical substances. (C1-20, C23, F3)
CLASSIFICATION or CL (83) - Used for taxonomic or other systematic or hierarchical classification systems. (A11, A15, B-N)
COMPLICATIONS or CO (83) - Used with diseases to indicate conditions that co-exist or follow.  (C, F3)
CONTRAINDICATIONS or CT (93) - Used with drugs, chemicals, plants and plant products, and biological and physical agents in any disease or physical state that might render their use improper, undesirable, or inadvisable. Used also with contraindicated diagnostic, therapeutic, prophylactic, anesthetic, surgical, or other procedures. (B6, D, E)
DEFICIENCY or DF (98) - Used with endogenous and exogenous substances which are absent or in diminished amount relative to the normal requirement of an organism or a biologic system. Use only for selected headings in the D1 and D11 trees. (D1, D8, D11-12)
DIAGNOSIS or DI - Used for all aspects of diagnosis and assessment, including examination and differential diagnosis. Excludes screening for which "prevention and control" is used; excludes prognosis for which "prognosis" is used. For radiographic diagnosis use "radiography"; for ultrasonic diagnosis use "ultrasonography." (C, F3)
DIAGNOSTIC USE or DU (92) - Used with chemical compounds, drugs, and physical agents for studies of the clinical function of an organ, or for the diagnosis of diseases. (B6, D)
DIET THERAPY or DH (83) - Used with disease headings for dietary or nutritional management. Excludes nutritional support such as enteral feeding and parenteral nutrition for which "therapy" is used. Excludes use of vitamin or mineral supplements for which "drug therapy" is used. (C, F3)
DRUG EFFECTS or DE (83) - Used with organs, regions, tissues, or organisms and physiological and psychological processes for the effects of drugs. Use with the D tree for endogenous substances only. (A, B1, B3-6, D, F1-2, G4-11)
DRUG THERAPY or DT - Used with disease headings for the treatment of disease by the administration of drugs or chemicals. (C, F3)
ECONOMICS or EC (83) - Used for the economic aspects of any subject, including all aspects of financial management and fund raising. (C-E, F3-4, G1-3, H-J, L, N2-4)
EDUCATION or ED - Used for education or teaching about diseases, procedures, services, programs, and other selected headings. Used for education and training in various disciplines and of various classes of people. Use available precoordinated education subject headings for formal educational programs. Use only for selected headings in the I2 tree. (C, E-N, P3)
EMBRYOLOGY or EM (97) - Used with organs, regions, and animal headings for embryologic and fetal development. It is used also with diseases for embryologic factors contributing to postnatal disorders. (A1-10, A14, B2, B6, C)
EPIDEMIOLOGY or EP (91) - Used for the distribution and frequency of diseases, injuries, and other health-related events and their causes in a desired population. Includes incidence, prevalence, endemic, and epidemic outbreaks. Excludes mortality for which "mortality" is used. (C, F1, F3, G3)
EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES or ES - Used with diagnostic or therapeutic procedures, specialties/disciplines, and other selected headings for the development, utilization, or modification of apparatus, instruments, or equipment. (E1-6, F2, F4, G1-3, H, J1, L)
ETHICAL ISSUES or EI (98) - Used with disciplines, procedures, personnel, and other selected headings for ethical aspects. (C-N)
ETHNOLOGY or EH (96) - Used with diseases and selected terms for ethnic, cultural, anthropological, or racial aspects, and with geographic headings to indicate the place of origin of a group of people. (C, F1, F3, Z)
ETIOLOGY or ET (83) - Used with medical and social problems for causation. Includes environmental factors, microorganisms, life style, etc. Also used with nursing diagnoses. (C, F3, G3, I1, P)
EVALUATION or EV - Used with non-disease headings (e.g., behavior mechanisms, physiological processes, programs, disciplines, classes of persons, facilities, and services) for evaluation and assessment. (E, F1-2, F4, G2-12, H, I, J1, K-N, P)
FAMILIAL AND GENETIC or FG (90) - Used for discussion of genetic basis of disease; diseases occurring in family groups due to environmental factors, including infection and common dietary habits; includes hereditary disease. (C, F1, F3)
HISTORY or HI - Used for the historical aspects of any subject. (B6, C-F, G1-3, H-N)
IMMUNOLOGY or IM (99) - Used for immunologic studies of tissues, organs, microorganisms, fungi, viruses, and animals. It includes immunologic aspects of diseases but not immunologic procedures used for diagnostic, preventive, or therapeutic purposes, for which "diagnosis," "prevention and control," or "therapy" are used. The concept is also used for chemicals as antigens or haptens. (A2-16, B, C, D1-24, F3, G4-G5, G7-10)
INJURIES or IN - Used with anatomic headings for wounds and injuries. (A1-10, A14-15)
INNERVATION or IR (02) - Used with organs, regions, or tissues for their nerve supply. (A1-5, A7, A9-10, A14)
LEGISLATION AND JURISPRUDENCE or LJ - Used for laws, statutes, ordinances, government regulations, legal issues, and court decisions. (B6, C-F, G1-3, H-J, L-N)
MANPOWER or MA (83) - Used with disciplines and programs for the demand, supply, distribution, recruitment, and use of personnel. (G1-2, I, J1, L, N2-4)
METABOLISM or ME (92) - Used with organs, cells, organisms, and diseases for biochemical changes and metabolism. It is also used with drugs and chemicals for catabolic changes. (A2-16, B-D, F3)
METHODS or MT (83) - Used with techniques, procedures, and programs for methods. (E1-6, F2, F4, G1-3, H, J1, L, N)
MICROBIOLOGY or MI (97) - Used with organs, animals, and higher plants and with diseases for microbiologic factors or studies. (A, B1-2, B6, C, F3, J2)
MORTALITY or MO (95) - Used with human diseases for mortality statistics. (C, E1-4, F3)
NURSING or NU (84) - Used with diseases and certain physiological processes for nursing care and techniques. Includes nursing care in diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive procedures. Do not use with "Care" headings in the E2 tree. (C, E, F3, G8, P3)
ORGANIZATIONS or OG (83) - Used with disciplines and classes of persons for associated organizations, societies, agencies, etc. Prefer use with disciplines. (C, E, G2, H, I1-2, K-M, N2)
PATHOLOGY or PA (95) - Used for organ, tissue, or cell structure in disease states. (A1-11, A14-16, C, F3)
PHARMACODYNAMICS or PD (87) - Used with drugs and exogenously administered chemical substances for their actions on tissues and organisms; includes effects upon metabolism, acceleration, or inhibition of biological processes, and the mechanisms of action. (B6, D)
PHARMACOKINETICS or PK (00) - Used for the mechanism, dynamics, and kinetics of exogenous chemical and drug absorption, biotransformation, distribution, release, transport, uptake, and elimination as a function of dosage, extent, and rate of metabolic process. (B6, D1-23, D25-26)
PHYSIOLOGY or PH - Used with organs, tissues, and cells for their normal function. Also used with physical processes and biochemical substances, endogenously produced, for their physiological role. (A, B, D, G4-11, I3)
PHYSIOPATHOLOGY or PP - Used with organs, tissues, cell structures, and disease states for disordered function. (A, C, F3)
POISONING or PO (84) - Used with drugs, chemicals, plants, and industrial materials for human or animal poisoning, acute or chronic, whether the poisoning is accidental, occupational, suicidal, by medication error, or by environmental exposure. (B6, D, J2)
PREVENTION AND CONTROL or PC (83) - Used with disease headings for increasing disease resistance, control of transmission agents, prevention and control of environmental hazards, and prevention and control of social factors leading to disease. Includes immunization and screening. (C, F1, F3, G3, I1)
PROGNOSIS or PR (96) - Prospect of survival and recovery from a disease as anticipated from the usual course of that disease or indicated by special features of a particular case. (C, F3)
PSYCHOSOCIAL FACTORS or PF (83) - Used with diseases, psychological processes, techniques, and named groups for psychological, psychiatric, psychosomatic, social, behavioral, and emotional aspects. (C, E1-6, F3, G, I, M, N1-2)
RADIATION EFFECTS or RE (92) - Used for the effects of ionizing and nonionizing radiation upon organisms, organs, tissues, and physiologic processes. It includes the effects of irradiation on drugs, chemicals, and food. (A, B1, B3-6, D, G4-12, J2)
RADIOGRAPHY or RA (83) - Used with organs, regions, and diseases for x-ray examinations. Includes radionuclide imaging, angiography, and x-ray tomography. Use for radiographic diagnosis. For magnetic resonance imaging use "diagnosis"; for ultrasonic diagnosis use "ultrasonography." (A, C, F3)
RADIOTHERAPY or RT (83) - Used with disease headings for the therapeutic use of ionizing and nonionizing radiation. It includes the use of radioisotope therapy. (C)
REHABILITATION or RH (83) - Used with disease headings and surgical procedures for restoration of function of the individual. (C, E4, F3)
RISK FACTORS or RF (01) - Used with diseases or disorders to indicate any elements that may predispose an individual to the development of that disease or disorder. (C, F3)
STANDARDS or ST (83) - Used with facilities, personnel, programs, and services for the development, testing, and application of guidelines or standards of adequacy or acceptable performance. Includes standards of practice and health or safety standards in industries or occupations. Used with chemicals or drugs for standards of identification, quality, and potency. (D, E, F4, G-J, L, N)
SURGERY or SU (83) - Used for operative procedures on organs, regions, or tissues for the treatment of diseases, including tissue section by lasers. Excludes transplantation for which "transplantation" is used. (A, C, F3)
SYMPTOMS or SS (96) - Used with diseases and disorders for presenting signs and symptoms or clinical manifestations. (C, F3)
THERAPEUTIC USE or TU (84) - Used with drugs, biological preparations, plants, and physical agents for their use in the prophylaxis and treatment of disease. (B6, D, H)
THERAPY or TH (83) - Used with diseases for therapies other than specific drug therapy, diet therapy, radiotherapy, rehabilitation, or surgery for which subheadings exist. Also used for materials dealing with multiple therapies. (C, F3, P3)
TRANSMISSION or TM (87) - Used with diseases and microbes for the modes of transmission.  (B3-5, C)
TRANSPLANTATION or TR (83) - Used with organs, tissues, or cells for transplantation. (A)
TRENDS or TD (83) - Used for the manner in which a subject changes with time, whether past, present, or future. (C, E, F1, F3-4, G1-3, H-I, J1, L, N)
ULTRASONOGRAPHY or US (92) - Used with organs and regions for ultrasonic imaging and with diseases for ultrasonic diagnosis. Does not include ultrasonic therapy. (A, C, F3)
URINE or UR (99) - Used for the presence or analysis of substances in the urine, and also for the examination of, or changes in, the urine in disease. (B2, C, D1-24, F3)
UTILIZATION or UT (83) - Used with procedures, equipment, programs, facilities, and services for discussions of how and how much they are used. (E, F4, G1-3, H-J, L, N, P)