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Proc Annu Symp Comput Appl Med Care. 1993 : 695–699.
PMCID: PMC2850664

Developing a standard data structure for medical language--the SNOMED proposal.


The Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine, Third Edition, SNOMED International, is a comprehensive structured nomenclature of human and veterinary medicine, the terms of which are detailed, fine grained and semantically typed. Terms are assigned to eleven independent modules (fields), each of which is systematized. Terms may be linked to on another to represent complex entities or manifestations or alternately complex terms dissected into their elemental parts. Terms are illustrated utilizing a frame representation. Efforts are in progress to build both a conceptual graph and a frame-based semantic network encompassing each SNOMED term, effectively building a knowledge base. In this way, the knowledge contained in each alphanumeric representation is made explicit. SNOMED is a linked data structure capable of faithfully representing the activities, observations and diagnoses found in the medical record in a computer processable form.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Wingert F. Medical linguistics: automated indexing into SNOMED. Crit Rev Med Inform. 1988;1(4):333–403. [PubMed]
  • Rothwell DJ, Hause LL. SNOMED and microcomputers in anatomic pathology. Med Inform (Lond) 1983 Jan-Mar;8(1):23–31. [PubMed]

Articles from Proceedings of the Annual Symposium on Computer Application in Medical Care are provided here courtesy of American Medical Informatics Association