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AMA Citation

American Medical Association (AMA) Citation Style

The AMA style is the style commonly used for medical and science publishing.  The library doesn't have the AMA Manual of Style yet.  However, it is accessible online and provides high quality services to help authors finding the information needed.
AMA style requires the use of standard abbreviations for all references, when applicable.  Abbreviations for many common medical journals can be found in the AMA Manual of Style (pp.473-479).  Additional abbreviations can be searched in the PubMed Journal Database (

Citing Printed Sources:


Author's names follow the same rule: Author last name Author's first initials (no space between initials)

One author


Author last name Author's first initials (no space between initials, as YS). Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher; year.
i.e. Cheng XN. Chinese Acupuncture and Moxibustion.  Beijing: Foreign Languages Press; 1999.

More than one author (list all authors if six or less; otherwise, list first three followed by “et al”)


Author(s) separated by commas.  Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher; year.
Mills S, Bone K. The Essential Guide to Herbal Safety. St. Louis, Mi: ELSEVIER Churchill Livingstone; 2005.

Edited book


Author(s), eds. Title of Book.  Place of publication: Publisher; year.
Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. A Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2004.

Book with edition number


Author(s), eds. Title of Book.  Edition number.  Place of publication: Publisher; year.
Papadakis MA, McPhee SJ, eds.  Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment.  52th ed.  New York, NY: Mc Graw Hill Medical; 2013.

Book with a corporate author


Corporate name. Title of Book.  Place of publication: Publisher; year.
American Pharmacists Association.  Drug Information Handbook.  21st ed.  Hudson, Oh: Lexicomp; 2012.

Chapter or article from a book, edited book, or encyclopedia


Author(s) of article.  Title of article.  In: Editor's name, ed.  Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher; Year: Chapter or page number.
Hoff T, Rockmann KW. Power, politics, and conflict management.  In: Burns LR, Bradley EH, Weiner BJ, ed.   Shortell and Kaluzny's Health Care Management Organization Design and Behavior.  Australia:  Delmar Cengage Learning; 2012:188-220.

Articles in journals and newspaper

Note 1: Authors' surnames and initials follow the same rules as seen with books
Note 2: If the journal doesn't have a volume or issue number, use the issue date

One author (do not include issue number or month unless volume are not consecutively numbered)


Author. Article title.  Journal Title.  Year; Volume Number:Inclusive page numbers.
Yamamoto T.  Health education in Pubery: from the standpoint of an obstetrician-gynecologist.  Japan Medical Association Journal. 2012; 55:292-297.

More than one author (list all authors if six or less; otherwise, list first three followed by “et al”)


Author(s) of article.  Article title.  Journal Title.  Year; Volume number:Inclusive Page Numbers.
Toba K, Kikuchi R, Iwata A, Kozaki K. “Fall Risk Index” helps clinicians identify high-risk individuals.  Japan Medical Association Journal.  2009; 52:237-242.

Newspaper (if the city name is not part of the newspaper name, it may be added to the official name for clarity.  if an article jumps from one page to a later page write the page number like D1, D5)


Author(s) of article.  Article title.  Newspaper title.  Publishing date, year: Page Numbers.
Dr, Cheng Kai visiting US Cheng's Acupuncture American Heritage base.  Chinese Medical Report Seminonthly.  February 15, 2013:8.

Government Documents or Agency Bulletins*


Government or Agency name, department name.  Document Name.  Place of publication: publisher; year.  NIH publication number.
National Institutes of Health, US Department of Health and Human Services.  Strategic Plan for NIH Obesity Research: A Report to the NIH Obesity Research Task Force.  Bethesda, MD: National Institutes of Health; 2004.  NIH publication 04-5493.

Citing Media:

DVD, Audio tape, Audio CD, or Video tape


Author name.  Media Title [Media type].  Publication place: publisher; year.
Chow PY.  Chow Qigong System Vol. 1: Qigong Basics & Exercises [DVD].  San Francisco, CA: East West Academy of Healing Arts; 1997.

Citing Electronic Sources:

Online Books Sample*

Author name or Corporate name.  Book Title.  Public place: publisher; year.  URL.  Accessed date. Author. 
National Research Council.  Committee on the Biological and Biomedical Applications of Stem Cell Research.  Stem Cells and the Future of Regenerative Medicine.  Washington, DC: National Academy Press; 2002. Accessed March 14, 2013.

Articles in Online Journals

The preferred citation style for an electronic journal uses a DOI (digital object identifier).  The DOI provides a persistent link to the electronic item and is considered to be more stable than a URL.  If the DOI is not given on the full text article or in the citation, use a DOI lookup tool to locate it ( or use the format for an article without a DOI.

Journal article from online databases with DOI available.
Note that when using a DOI, no access date or URL are used.


Author.  Title of article.  Name of Journal.  Year;vol(issue):pages. doi:xxx.xxxx.
Wang Y, Lin XM, Zheng GQ.  Traditional Chinese medicine for Parkinson's disease in China and beyond.  Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine.  2011;17(5): 385-388.  doi: 10.1089/acm.2011.0025.

Journal article from online databases without DOI available.
The accessed date will often be the only date available.


Author.  Title of article.  Name of Journal.  Year;vol(issue):pages. Available from Database Name. Published date.  Undated date.  Accessed date.
Devitt M.  Franklin Bache: a pioneer of American acupuncture.  American Acupuncturist [serial online].  2010;53:14017.  Available from Alt HealthWatch, Ipswich, MA.  Accessed February 27, 2013.

Journals and Magazines from World Wide Web*


Author(s).  Title of article.  Journal Title.  Publish year;volume(issue): page name. URL.  Accessed date.
Walker NA, Denegar CR, Preische J.  Low-intensity pulsed ultrasound and pulsed electromagnetic field in the treatment of tibial fracture: a systematic review.  J Athl Train.  2007;42(4):530-5. Accessed September 6, 2011.

Newspaper from World Wide Web*


Author(s).  Title of article.  Newspaper Title.  Publish date, year:page name. URL.  Accessed date.
Wade N. Agency proposes U.S-paid research on stem cells from early human egg. New York Times. February 20, 2010:A8. Accessed September 6, 2011.


It always challenging to cite websites no matter what style you use (AMA, APA, MLA, etc.).   The AMA Manual of Style: A Guide for Authors and Editors (10th edition) recommends to include the following information, IF AVAILABLE:

  • Author (if there is one)
  • Title of the specific item cited (if none given then give the name of the organization responsible for the site.)
  • Name of the webiste
  • URL
  • Publishing date or updated date
  • Access date
  • Three Website Examples*

    1. Stem Cell Quick Reference. Learn Genetics/Genetic Science Learning Center. Updated January 25, 2010. Accessed August 25, 2010.

    2. FAQs about Stem Cell Research. Eli & Edythe Broad Center of Regenerative Medicine & Stem Cell Research. Accessed September 6, 2010.

    3. World Medical Association. Declaration of Helsinki: ethical principles for medical research involving human subjects. Updated June 10, 2002. Accessed February 26, 2004.


    1. * sample citations and/or information are credited to Delta College Library.
    2. Delta College Library. AMA Citations Style Guide.  Accessed March 14, 2013.
    3. Created by Librarian Sophia Wang, 3/24/2013