The NLM Drug Information Portal gives users a gateway to selected drug information from the U.S. National Library of Medicine and other key U.S. Government agencies.
At the top of the page are links to individual resources with potential drug information, including summaries tailored to various audiences.
Resources include the NLM search systems useful in searching for a drug, NLM research resources, resources organized by audience and class, and other NIH and government resources such as FDA and CDC.
The search box in the middle of the page lets you search many of these resources simultaneously. More than 31,000 drugs can be searched using this facility.
The portal covers drugs from the time they are entered into clinical trials (Clinicaltrials.gov) through their entry in the U.S. market place (Drugs@FDA).
Many drugs in other countries are covered, but not as thoroughly as U.S. drugs. The PubMed link provides medical literature describing research, and TOXLINE provides toxicology literature.
Resources such as MedlinePlus provide easy to read summaries of the uses and efficacy of a drug.
You may search by a drug’s trade name or generic name. For example, the trade name “Advil” and the generic name “ibuprofen” will retrieve the same drug record.
As you type in a name, suggestions are given beneath the search box. A spell checker gives suggestions if the name is not found.
You can find embedded portions of names by using an asterisk at the beginning and/or end of a search term. You can also search by the general Category of usage of a drug by checking that radio button.
Suggestions are given as you type here too.
Once a drug is found, a summary of the drug’s type and usage is given, as well as links leading to further information at one of the portal’s resources. Outside links open in a new window.
Within a given drug record, you may click on the drug category and retrieve drugs with the same or similar uses.