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How to Cite


How to Cite: AMA

The American Medical Association (AMA) style is used in the health sciences, especially the medical field.  Please consult your professor for the citation style they prefer. Always follow any specific guidelines given by your professor, even if they differ from what is explained here.  If you have additional questions about citation, please see our How to Cite guide. 

General Rules when using AMA:

  • List items with in the numerical order in which they are cited in the text (not listed alphabetically)
    • Superscript numbers are placed outside periods and commas, and inside colons and semicolons
    • Use commas to separate multiple superscript citation numbers in text
    • When citing same source more than once, use the number of the original reference, then include the page number, in parentheses, where the information was found
  • Include up to 6 authors (if more than six, provide the name of the first three and then add et al)
  • If there is no author, start with the title
  • Journals, magazines, and newspapers should be cited with abbreviated titles; to find correct abbreviation, search for the journal title through PubMed

 If you need further information, the most recent manual of style for AMA citation (10th edition) can be found at the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor of the library. 

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AMA by Media Type

Remember to cite references in consecutive order using superscript numbers.  Unpublished works and personal communications should be cited parenthetically in the text and not in the reference list. Use commas to separate multiple citation numbers in text. Superscript numbers are placed outside of period and commas, and inside colons and semicolons.  (Examples are taken from two documents found online - see below for links and references)


Between 1977 and 2002, the intake of “caloric” beverages doubled in the United States, with most recent data showing that children and adults in the United States consume about 172 and 175 kcal daily, respectively from SSB.1 It is estimated that SSB account for about 10% of total energy intake in adults.2,3  

…Of the respondents, 95% felt that discharge arrangements were adequately explained to them.4 Further examination of the data in this study revealed other significant discrepancies. 4(p275)


1. Duffey, KJ, Popkin BM. Shifts in patterns and consumption of beverages between 1965 and 2002. Obesity. 2007;15(11):2739-2747.

2. Nielsen SJ, Popkin BM. Changes in beverage intake between 1977 and 2001. Am J Prev Med. 2004;27(3):205-210.

3. Drewnowski A, Bellisle F. Liquid calories, sugar, and body weight. Am J Clin Nutr. 2007;85(3):651-661.

4. Cleary M, Horsfall J, Hunt GE. Consumer feedback on nursing care. J Adv Nurs. 2003;42:269-277. 

*These examples taken from

American Medical Association (AMA) Citation Style website. Updated November 2012. Accessed August 31, 2015.

Citing Sources using AMA Citation Style.  Updated September 2015. Accessed September 7, 2015.

NOTE: Journal names should be abbreviated according to the listing in the PubMed Journals database (type in the journal's full name) as well as in the print version of the AMA Manual of Style (pp. 473-479), available at the 2nd floor reference desk.  

Print Journal Article - One Author

Angelo J. A survey of persons who use integrated control devices. Assist Technol. 1998;10(3):77-83.

Print Journal Article - More than one author (list up to six authors, otherwise list first 3 followed by "et al")

Rainier S, Thomas D, Tokarz D, et al. Myofibrillogenesis regulator 1 gene mutations cause paroxysmal dystonic choreoathetosis. Arch Neurol. 2004;61(7):1025-1029.

Article from a journal published in both print and online

Duchin JS. Can preparedness for bilogical terrorism save us from pertussis? Arch Pediatr Adolsc Med. 2004;158(2): 106-107. Accessed June 1, 2004.

Online Journal Article with DOI available (when using a DOI, no access date or URL are used) 

Florez, HR, Martinez RL. Outdoor exercise reduces the risk of hypoviatminosis D in the obese. J Steroid Biochem Mol Bio. 2007; 103(3-5):679-681. doi:10.1016/j.jsbmb.2006.12.032.

Online Journal Article without DOI available

Hay PJ. Understanding bulimia. Aust Fam Physician. 2007;36(9):708-712. Accessed October 11, 2009. 


One Author / Editor: 

Sacks O. Uncle Tungsten. New York, NY: Alfred A Knopf; 2001.

Galanter M, ed. Services research in the Era of Managed Care.  New York, NY: Kluwer Academic/Plenum; 2001.  Recent Developments in Alcoholism; vol 15. 

Two or More Authors / Editors: 

Modlin J, Jenkins P. Decision Analysis in Planning for a Polio Outbreak in the United States.  San Francisco, CA: Pediatric Academic Societies; 2004. 

Adkinson N, Yunginger J, Busse W, Bochner B, Holgate S, Middleton E, eds.  Middleton's Allergy: Principles and Practice.  6th ed.  St Louis, MO: Mosby; 2003.

More than Six Authors:

Simon LS, Lipman AG, Jacox AK, et al. Pain in Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and Juvenile Chronic Arthritis. 2nd ed. Glenview, IL: American Pain Society, 2002.  

Organization as Author: 

World Health Organization. Injury: A Leading Cause of the Global Burden of Disease, 2000.  Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2002.  

Reference to a Chapter in a Book:

Solensky R. Drug allergy: desensitization and treatment of reactions to antibiotics and aspirin. In: Lockey P, ed. Allergens and Allergen Immunotherapy. 3rd ed. New York, NY: Marcel Dekker; 2004:585-606.

*if the chapter authors are also editors of the book, list them in both places as authors of the chapter and also as editors of the book

Book of Second or Later Edition:

Glinoer D. Thyroid disease during pregnancy. In: Braverman LE, Utiger RE, eds. Werner and Ingbar's The Thyroid: A Fundamental and Clinical Text. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2000:1013-1027.

Drinking water. MedlinePlus. Updated February 26, 2015. Accessed March 16, 2015.

Mayo Clinic Staff. Headache. The Mayo Clinic. Published June 4, 2013. Accessed March 16, 2015.

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Division of Applied Research and Technology. Buy quiet. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Updated December 5, 2014. Accessed March 16, 2015.

Custer SLA. Using Music Therapy in a Clinical Setting to Lower the Levels of Anxiety and Stress [dissertation]. Kingsville: Texas A&M University; 1996.

Fenster SD. Cloning and Characterization of Piccolo, a Novel Component of the Presynaptic Cytoskeletal Matrix [dissertation]. Birmingham: University of Alabama; 2000.

Whittle CH. On Learning Science and Pseudoscience from Prime-Time Television Programming [dissertation]. Albuquerque: The University of New Mexico; 2003.

Online Government / Organization Reports

Dafney L, Gruber, J. Does public insurance improve the efficiency of medical care? Medicaid expansions and child hospitalizations. Published February 2000. Accessed February 26, 2004.

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

Johnson DL, O'Malley PM, Bachman JG. Secondary School Students. Bethesda, MD: National Institute on Drug Abuse; 2001. Monitoring the Future: National Survey Results on Drug USe, 1975-2000; vol 1. NIH Publication 01-4924. Published August 2001. Accessed February 27, 2004.  

Print Newspaper 

Wolfe W. State's mail-order drug plan launched. Minneapolis Star Tribune. May 14, 2004: 1B.

Online Newspaper

Weiss, R. The promise of precision prescriptions. Washington Post.  June 24, 2001:A1. Accessed October 10, 2001. 

Unpublished material includes items such as articles or abstracts that have been presented at a society meeting but not published as well as material accepted for publication but not published as of yet.  

Items Presented at a Meeting but Not Yet Published (oral or poster presenations)

Durbin D, Kallan M, Elliott M, Arbogast K, Cornejo R, Winston F. Risk of injury to restrained children from passenger air bags. Paper presented at: 46th Annual Meeting of the Association for the Advancement for Automotive Medicine; September 2002; Tempe, AZ. 

*Once published, they take the form of reference to a book, journal or other medium in which they are ultimately published:

Cionni RJ. Color perception in patients with UV- or blue-light-filtering IOLs. In: Symposium on Cataract, IOL, and Refractive Surgery. San Diego, CA: American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery; 2004. Abstract 337. 

Material Accepted for Publication but Not Yet Published

Ofri D. Incidental Findings: Lessons From My Patients in the Art of Medicine. Boston, MA: Beacon Press. In press.

Carrau RL, Khir A, Crawley JA, Hillson EM, Davis JK, Pashos CL. The impact of laryngopharyngeal reflux on patient-reported quality of life. Laryngoscope. In press. 

Material Submitted for Publication but Not Yet Accepted: In the list of references, do not include material that has been submitted for publication but has not yet been accepted.  This material, with its date, should be noted int he text as "unpublished data" as follows:

These findings have been recently corroborated (H. E. Marman, MD, unpublished data, January 2015).

Similar findings have been noted by Roberts6 and H.E. Marman, MD (unpublished data, 2005). 

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