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About the Expertscape service
What does Expertscape do?

For the healthcare consumer, Expertscape quickly and easily points you to the doctors and hospitals having the most knowledge about your specific medical disorder or condition. This enables you to obtain a second opinion from a true expert.

Physicians can use Expertscape to find world-class or national-class experts for medical referrals. Scientists, journalists, and attorneys can use Expertscape to discover biomedical experts for professional partnerships.

How does Expertscape do this?

Expertscape ranks persons and institutions according to their demonstrated expertise in specific medical diseases, conditions, and treatments.

So, with Expertscape you can find, for your specific problem, the highest-ranked experts anywhere in the world, in your part of the country, or in your state or city. You can even narrow the listings to rank just the experts who are at one specific medical center.

Why is it called "Expertscape"?

Expertscape gives you detailed information about the geographical location of experts -- their countries, cities, and institutions. With this landscape of experts, you can choose which ones to contact for help with your problem.

Why do I need Expertscape?

You should try Expertscape if:

  • You have had trouble finding an informed physician -- for yourself or a loved one.
  • You are satisfied with your doctor, but you are facing a major medical decision, and would like the comfort of a second opinion from an expert who has taken a professional interest in your problem.
  • You are uncertain or confused or looking for advice on your condition.

Expertscape will quickly point you to people who are experts in your problem.

What do I need to run Expertscape?

A modern web browser connected to the Internet. The system has not been checked on older browsers.

What is the best way to use Expertscape?

Our 2-Minute Videos shows you the the types of questions Expertscape can answer.

The Picking Clinical Experts page will help you use the information Expertscape provides.

The Limitations of Expertscape page will help you understand the limits of the information.

About "Experts"
What is an expert?

We define an expert as someone who demonstrates their expertise and knowledge of a field by writing articles that are published in the medical literature. These are the experts who try to teach the world their knowledge.

Expertscape will not identify so-called experts who do not publish their knowledge and experiences.

How are experts ranked?

Experts are ranked according to the quality and quantity of their publications.

Details: Expertscape examines all medical publications that are indexed in the National Library of Medicine's MEDLINE database. We rank the expertise of each author according to the number and type of articles that each expert has authored on the specific condition, disease, or treatment of interest to you.

This ranking method identifies experts who have a variety of backgrounds. For example, experts that we identify my be ranked highly because they

  • conduct and publish clinical research into your condition
  • write reviews that are based on analysis of other researchers' work on your condition
  • author articles on the scientific underpinnings of your condition.
Does Expertscape locate expert physicians?

You can use Expertscape to locate a physician to take care of yourself or a loved one. Many of the experts that we identify are expert physicians who concentrate their professional lives on managing the illnesses of sick people.

However, it is important to realize that not all the experts that Expertscape identifies are clinical experts who can take care of patients.

For example:

  • Some experts have only a PhD degree. They cannot be a patient's physician.
  • Some experts with an M.D. degree work mostly in the laboratory. They do not take care of sick people.
  • Some expert physicians mostly help other physicians. These experts rarely see an actual patient. Instead, they read X-rays and diagnostic scans, or examine and interpret tissue samples under a microscope.

See also our discussion of the Limitations of Expertscape.

I understand that Expertscape includes many different types of experts. How can I tell which experts specialize in caring for patients?

Expertscape does not automatically identify which experts specialize in taking care of patients. But you should be able to use the information provided by Expertscape to find such experts. See our Picking Clinical Experts page.

Another interesting point: Even experts who don't take care of patients often work closely with experts who do, so they may be able to recommend a clinical expert for you.

Available Topics
What is a "topic"?

"Topic" is our short-hand word for the specific biomedical subject for which you are seeking an expert. One person, for example, may choose asthma as a topic. Another person might choose aspirin as a topic.

How many topics does Expertscape know about?

Expertscape can find experts in more than 29,000 subject areas. These are the subjects recognized in the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) list from the National Library of Medicine.

My problem is not listed as an available Expertscape topic. Why?

The most probable reason is a mismatch between the word(s) you are using to describe your problem and the words that Expertscape uses to describe the problem. Expertscape tends to use the words that physicians use. Here are some suggestions:

  • Shorten your search term to one word. Expertscape does a pretty good job of finding topics that are some way related to a single word.
  • Browse all the topics the system knows. You will most likely see something that rings a bell.
  • Use a search engine to try to find the professional term, then return to Expertscape and search on the professional term.

Can I get a custom topic added to Expertscape's database?

No, but we may add this in the future if there is sufficient interest.

About Expertscape
Who is Expertscape?

See the Contact Us page.

How long has the service been running?

The Expertscape service launched in 2003. Major upgrades appeared in August 2009 and August 2013.