Index to Chiropractic Literature
Index to Chiropractic Literature
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Monday, October 24, 2016
Index to Chiropractic LiteratureIndex to Chiropractic LiteratureIndex to Chiropractic LiteratureIndex to Chiropractic Literature

Guidelines for ICL Indexers

This page contains instructions for ICL indexers. Those wishing to know more about our indexing procedures may also find this page of interest.
See also ICL Documentation

Using the Online Submission Form

Submitting indexing using this online form is a two-step process.
Step 1: Title, URL, Pages, Journal, Issue, Publication Type, Peer Review, Notes
Step 2: Article Authors, Article Subjects

The form is designed so that indexing may not proceed without required fields being completed. Also, Please check your indexing before you submit windows pop up frequently. After completing the second step, indexers may view the entire record before submitting it.


  • How do I add a new issue?
    Click on Create New Issue and enter Volume, Issue, Year, and Month/Quarter if applicable, and Year. See Dates for abbreviations.
  • Which fields are required?
    Step 1 of the submission process: title, pages, journal, issue
    Step 2 of the submission process: authors, subject (s)
    Not required:  URL or Notes
  • What do I put in the URL field? See URLs
  • How do I enter page numbers? See Pagination
  • What do I put in the notes field?
    On the public site the name of this field is Abstract/Notes. It may include an abstract and permission statement and notes about availability of full text.
    For examples see Abstracts
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What to index:

  • articles
  • editorials
  • letters (unless too short or general)
  • reviews of any type of materials
  • obituaries
  • meeting proceedings
  • college news and announcements ( if they are of lasting value, e.g. a new college president)

What not to index:

  • college news and announcements ( if they are not of lasting value, e.g. homecoming events)
  • routine news and announcements
  • digests of news published elsewhere
  • letters which are too short or general
  • abstracts of individual papers published elsewhere
  • instructions for authors

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Use the following abbreviations:
Months: Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec or Nov/Dec
Seasons: Spr, Sum, Fall, Aut, Win or Sum/Fall

For years, enter a four-digit year.


Enter page numbers as follows:  63-67  or  18;20-21
For online only articles: Online access only 9 p
If the article is online but has page numbers, then include them: Online access only p 4-9


Choose author names from the drop-down author index. For new authors, enter initials as they appear in the publications.  Type last name first and then initials, with no punctuation. There is no limit to the number of authors you may add.

Examples: Keating JC Jr ; Faye LJ
For anonymous records:  None Given

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Note: A more complete subject help file is available here (password protected).

Choose subject headings from the drop-down subject index. If you need to create a new subject, use only National Library of Medicine Subject Headings (MeSH) or Chiropractic Subject Headings – ChiroSH (2009 edition). There is no limit in the number of subject headings you can add.

Subheadings: Use forward slashes with one space before and after the slash. If a subheading you want to use is not already in the drop-down subject index, check MeSH to ensure that it can be used with the particular MeSH term. subheadings are in lower case unless they are proper nouns.

Examples:  Low Back Pain / therapy; Manipulation, Cervical / methods

General subject headings: Chiropractic by itself as a subject heading is very broad. Use it sparingly; prefer a more specific term because ICL is a chiropractic database. Rather than using Chiropractic / methods, prefer a specific term such as Sacro Occipital Technique.

Examples:  Chiropractic / United States; Chiropractic / trends; Education, Chiropractic; Research, Chiropractic; History of Chiropractic / Canada   ICL record

Personal names as subject headings: Enter the most complete form of the name available. [Last name][comma][space][First name][space][Initial]
Example: Keating, Joseph C. Jr, 1950-2007

Age Groups

We have discontinued the use of ages as subheadings and are using the following age groups as subject headings:

  • Infant (0-23 months)
  • Child (2-12 years)
  • Adolescent (13-18 years)
  • Young Adult (19-24 years)
  • Adult (19-64 years)
  • Aged (65-79)
  • Aged, 80 and over

Example: For an article about treatment of headache in children and adolescents, use three subject headings:
Headache / therapy; Child; Adolescent

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Take the titles from articles in the body of the journals, not from the tables of contents. Include initial articles and all other parts of the title, as they appear in the printed journal. Capitalize the first word of the title and only proper nouns thereafter. Capitalize the first word of subtitles.

A guide to the evaluation of permanent impairment: Case studies [case report]
The American Chiropractic Association’s position on the definition of subluxation [editorial]

Series: If the article is one part of a multi-part series, enter the title and put the part number (if known) in square brackets at the end of the title.
Spinal manipulation [Part 2 of 4]

Publication types: Include publication types after titles, in square brackets.
Examples: [case report]; [editorial]; [letter]
Note: If the article title ends by naming a publication type that exactly matches the ICL publication type, do not include the publication type in square brackets. Examples: A systematic review; A case report; A systematic review.

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Publication Types

Several publication types are included in the indexing form. Include the publication type in the title, in square brackets, and also choose publication type from the drop-down menu.


  • Letter– In the title, include [letter] unless the word letter is already part of the title.
    Example: Characterization of side effects sustained by chiropractic students during their undergraduate training in technique class as a chiropractic college: a preliminary retrospective study. JCCA 2005; 49(1):46-55. [letter; comment]   ICL record
    If there is a reply to the letter, use [letter;comment] and include all authors (See example above)- From the drop-down menus, choose letter as a publication type, and non peer reviewed- If a letter is untitled, create a title and place it in square brackets- If the letter is in response to an article, choose the same subject headings for both
  • Book Review– In the title, include [book review]
    Example: Functional soft tissue examination and treatment by manual methods: New perspectives, second edition, by Warren I. Hammer [book review]   ICL record
    In the title, include the title of the book, edition statement (if stated), book author(s) or editor(s) if stated, and [book review] at the end of the title; do not include imprint or ISBN.
    From the drop-down menus, choose book review as a publication type, and non peer reviewed- Include at least one subject heading; donotuse Book Reviews as a subject heading or subheading.
  • Editorial– In the title, include [editorial] unless the word editorial is already part of the title
    Example: A breath of fresh air [editorial]
    From the drop-down menus, choose editorial as a publication type, and non peer reviewed.
    Include at least one subject heading; do not use Editorials as a subject heading or subheading
  • Interview– If the interview is untitled, create a title and enclose it in square brackets.
    Example: Revolutionizing access to continuing education and more! [interview with Peter Fernandez, D.C.] If no author is named, choose None Given and use interviewee’s name as a subject heading, following instructions in the personal names as subject headings section.   ICL record
  • Case reports– In the title, include [case report] unless the exact phrase case report is already part of the title
    Example: Scoliosis treatment using spinal manipulation and the Pettibon weighting system: A summary of 3 atypical presentations [case report]
    From the drop-down menus, choose case report as a publication type, and peer reviewed. Whenever possible, choose Male or Female (or both); choose one or more age groups; include at least one additional subject heading; do not use Case Reports as a subject heading or subheading.

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Peer Review

Peer review status has been assigned to individual journals. But indexers have to change the status to non peer review when indexing the following individual items:

  • editorials
  • letters
  • interviews or articles based on interviews
  • articles with no authors
  • book reviews


In the URL field, include links to abstracts and/or full text where publicly available. Do not use links to institutional or personal subscription sites, or to current issues unless they are “permanent” links.  For example, the file name in the following example will change when the next issue becomes the current issue:

Always prefer Open Access links such as those in PubMed Central. If articles are free online, include the subject heading Open Access Document.

Use DOIs (Digital Object Identifiers) where available (if there are no PubMed links). To create a DOI link, add the DOI number as it appears in the journal to this base link:

ExampleICL record The DOI URL is:

For assistance in creating links please contact or see The Digital Object Identifier System
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We have permission from all the publishers to include abstracts in our records. Permission statements must be included, to reflect this. Example: This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher; full text is available by subscription.

Important: When copying an abstract from a Web site, always copy into Notepad first, to remove all coding.

We now have a WYSIWYG editor, which means that HTML code is no longer necessary to separate the sections in structured abstracts. Please do not bold or italicize the section headings. Insert a hard line at the end of the abstract so that records are well separated in the public display; the hard line icon is available at the bottom of  the editor menu bar (beside the happy face icon).

Example of an abstract, with paragraph breaks, permission statement and hard line:

Purpose: The aim of this study was to determine the short-term effect of chiropractic joint manipulation therapy (CMT) and low-level laser therapy (LLLT) on pain and range of motion in the management of cervical facet dysfunction.

Methods: Sixty ambulatory women between the ages of 18 and 40 years with cervical facet joint pain of more than 30-day duration and normal neurologic examination were randomized to receive 1 of 3 treatment options: (1) CMT of the cervical spine, (2) LLLT applied to the cervical facet joints, or (3) a combination of CMT and LLLT. Each participant received 6 treatments in 3 weeks. The main outcome measures were as follows: the Numerical Pain Rating Scale, Neck Disability Index, Cervical Range of Motion Instrument, and Baseline Digital Inclinometer. Measurements were taken during weeks 1 (baseline), 2, 3, and 4.

Results: No differences existed between the 3 groups at baseline. A significant difference was seen between groups 1 (CMT) and 2 (LLLT) for cervical flexion, between groups 1 (CMT) and 3 (CMT + LLLT) for cervical flexion and rotation, and between groups 2 (LLLT) and 3 (CMT + LLLT) for pain disability in everyday life, lateral flexion, and rotation.

Conclusion: All 3 groups showed improvement in the primary and secondary outcomes. A combination of CMT and LLLT was more effective than either of the 2 on their own. Both therapies are indicated as potentially beneficial treatments for cervical facet dysfunction. Further studies are needed to explore optimal treatment procedures for CMT and LLLT and the possible mechanism of interaction between therapies.

This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher; full text is available by subscription. Click on the above link and select a publisher from PubMed’s LinkOut feature. ( ICL record)


The hard line is located on the menu bar, next to the happy face.

If the article is available free on the Internet, include the following statement:
This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher; click on the above link for free full text.

For open access articles, include the following subject heading: Open Access Document.

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