Search Filters

Identify all relevant studies in PubMed and Embase on measurement properties effectively with our search filters.

Studies on measurement properties are sometimes difficult to find in PubMed or other databases due to poor indexing, large variation in terminology, and poor reporting of measurement properties. Therefore we developed two search filters for finding studies on measurement properties in PubMed:

  • One highly sensitive search filter for finding studies on measurement properties. This filter has a sensitivity of 97.4% and a precision of 4.4%.
  • One more precise search filter which needs less abstracts to be screened, but at a higher risk of missing relevant studies. This filter has a sensitivity of 93.1% and a precision of 9.4%.

Search filter publication:

Terwee CB, Jansma EP, Riphagen II, de Vet HC. Development of a methodological PubMed search filter for finding studies on measurement properties of measurement instruments. Qual Life Res. 2009 Oct;18(8):1115-23. doi: 10.1007/s11136-009-9528-5.

Translations for other databases

For a variaty of databases translations of the filter were made. We provide them here. It should be noted that the following translated filters have not been validated. Because we don’t know which filter is most sensitive we present all filters and leave it up to the users to decide which filter they want to use.

Moreover, we have been informed about possible errors in the translations. If researchers improve these translations, please let us know so we can share your updated translation.


PsycInfo (via ProQuest)



Web of Science

Search filter for finding Patient-Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs)

If the review concerns PROMs, a PROM search filter developed by the University of Oxford can be used for this purpose.

Additional sources for search blocks can be found on the website, compiled by a group of Dutch medical information specialist, or on the website of the InterTASC Information Specialists’ Sub-Group (ISSG) . These building blocks are intended for use when performing complex search strategies in medical and health bibliographic databases, like PubMed, EMBASE, PsycInfo, Web of Scienceand others.