The data base will be at your disposal in the English language. Translations into German and sometimes also into Spanish are available for supplementary information. The search routine is exclusively in English, even if the studies searched for were written in another language. The database contains scientific studies as well as non-scientific articles. Editorials that refer solely to the content of the journal as well as book reviews and event information are not included in the database, nor are articles from trivial journals and blogs.
The database has 3 access routes for search.


In the simple search, the search area can be selected in the first field (e.g. author, keyword, abstract). Entering a word under “search term” searches for it in the selected field. When entering search terms, upper- and lower-case letters is not considered.
The search with a search term is carried out in right truncation, i.e. results are also searched for which contain the search term only as word stem. Thus, a search with the term “osteopath” also shows results with the words “osteopaths” and “osteopathic”. If only the word “osteopath” is to be searched for, a space must be placed after the word.
Several search terms can be entered in one line with spaces but without separators. The link is automatically made with “and” and only studies containing these search terms in the order entered are displayed as results. Example: For the term “low back pain”, the 3 words from the database are linked to a term and only those studies are displayed that contain the selected field “low back pain”. Studies with “back pain” or only “pain” would not be displayed. If the words “low back pain” are to be used both as a coherent search term and as 3 individual terms that can occur together but in different places, the search must be extended by two lines using the plus sign at the end of the line (with the Boolean operator “and”). If the results are to contain either “low” or  “back” or  “pain”, the search lines are to be linked with the Boolean operator “or”.

Advanced search

The advanced search is structured like the simple search, but has a number of effective filters that enable a very differentiated search for various options. In the normal state, all filters are switched off and thus show the maximum possible number of results. If the first row, a distinction can be made between searches for published and unpublished articles. The respective percentage shows how high the share of the respective area is in the database. By default, both areas are switched on. Furthermore, the search can be limited to studies (only studies) or to those articles that are available free of charge on the internet (free full text). The percentage indicated shows the proportion of freely accessible articles in the database. The term List of keywords a little further to the right contains a list of the search terms currently available in the Keywords section. Keywords written in bold usually have a higher significance and lead to more results. When entering the search term in the “search term” field, a list opens below the field containing those terms whose letters have been entered so far. Thus, when entering the letters l, o and w, all keywords containing these letters are displayed. When you click on a keyword, it is automatically transferred to the search field.
Quick search: quick search is the only filter in the database that displays all results in the displayed area without the need for a specific search term. If, for example, the category Covid-19 is selected under Quick search and then the search is confirmed with Return or the search key, all entries of this category are displayed. Quick search allows a quick and uncomplicated search within a rubric, but the combination with further filters and further search terms is not possible.
Search meta topic: the meta topic filter allows pre-sorting according to specific body systems and fields of work. For example, with the setting “Paediatric” and the search term “pain”, only those results are displayed that refer to pain in children’s diseases. The meta topic filter can be combined very well with other filters.
Search section: the section filter also limits the available contributions to the selected area.  The section filters are general. For example, the filter “therapy” and the search term “pain” show all studies and articles that deal with pain from a therapeutic perspective.
Filter study type: this filter allows differentiation according to the most important study types. In the normal state, all studies and articles are displayed.
Filter type of work: this filter allows differentiation with regard to D.O. Academy of Osteopathy papers as well as MSc and PhD papers. Furthermore, it is possible to select conference abstracts, poster presentations and studies that have developed abstracts for study projects. In the normal state, no filter is set.
Filter type of language: this filter allows selection according to the most important languages. In the normal state, no filter is set.
Filter country: this filter can be used to select the country from which the searched article should come. The country of origin of the first author serves as the basis. In the normal state, no filter is set.
Filter publication date: this filter allows you to conveniently limit the publication date, either to the month or the last 3, 6 or 12 months or to a self-selected period. In the normal state, no filter is set.
The arrangement of the search with regard to the category (e.g. abstract, keywords) as well as the entry of the search term and the extension of the search field is the same as in the simple search.

Search single citation

This search option is particularly suitable for a quick search for a specific author or study. When entering the author’s name, all studies assigned to this name are displayed. The filter journal displays a list of journals in which osteopathic articles have been published. The fields title words and publication date allow further differentiation. It is also possible to search for a study without the author’s name, e.g. by entering the journal and the publication date or a time window. The article searched for can then be selected from the results displayed.
#h3Search history
In the search history, the current search queries are saved for a certain time - for 2 hours if you are not logged in and 12 hours if you are logged in. As a logged-in user, you have the option of printing out your search strategies or saving them permanently with details of the search results and the date. To do this, click on the right-hand icons at the end of the line.

Saved searches

If you save your search in the search history, it will be displayed in the saved searches section from now on. You can rename, delete, or print the search from there at any time.

Sign in

If you register for free with OSTLIB and log in before working with the database, you have several advantages. You can save your search strategies permanently in this way, but you can also store particularly important studies in the clipboard and thus build up a collection of individual studies. In addition, the export function is activated in this way, with which you can read out your results (see Display search results).

Display search results

After setting the filters, entering the ‘search term’ and pressing ‘Search’, the results are displayed in list form. The list can be stored by author name, title, and date in descending or ascending order. On the left, you can select individual results and export them via the export field. There are 5 different output formats available. The first serves as a PDF for a comfortable overview of the search results, the txt. files serve as the second and third option for a simple overview, whereby you can choose between a printout with or without an abstract. The last two options are RIS and Bibtex files for importing the search results into a literature management programme.
Clicking on a search result in the list form opens the individual display. Here you will find a clear overview of all the data stored for an article or study. The brackets at the beginning and end of a title indicate that the article was not written in English and that the title has been translated. Below the translation is the title in the original language. After the names, numbers indicate how many contributions by the author are recorded in the database. A list of the contributions is displayed when the author’s name is clicked. In the individual display, you can also see how often the respective journal and the assigned keywords are recorded in the database. Here, too, a detailed overview is displayed when clicked.
Each search result displays a link that leads to the source of the publication, usually the journal in question or, the university, in the case of MSC, D.O. or PhD theses. If the download of the article is subject to a fee, the link is marked with full text. If, on the other hand, it is possible to download the article free of charge, the link is highlighted in green as free full text.
By clicking on copy to clipboard, the individual study can be saved in the clipboard. There you have the option of deleting the study again (far right), printing it out using the export function or saving it as a RIS file for a literature management programme.


Under the heading Help you will find the status file. It shows which publication years have been recorded in OSTLIB so far.

INIOST study report

The Institute for Osteopathic Studies (INIOST) has compiled a review for 2020, 2021 and 2022 (to follow), which describes the totality of osteopathic studies in one year according to predefined criteria, e.g. study type, number of studies, field of study (therapy, diagnosis, etc.), subject area, countries and journals. The reviews are written in German and can be downloaded free of charge.

QR Code

Each page of the database has a QR code at the bottom. If this code is photographed with a suitable mobile phone programme, the selected page can be displayed on the smartphone. This is particularly practical for transferring search results.

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