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Frequently Asked Questions


  • Who can contribute?
    • Anyone with medical training can contribute, from medical students through attendings. Allied health practitioners, eg nurse practitioners or physical therapists can also contribute.
  • Why should I register?
    • You do not have to register to view public content or leave comments. You do have to register if you want to make edits to existing dotphrases or create new dotphrases. By registering, you can also be notified of changes to content.
  • Who owns the content?
    • The content will be owned by It will remain free for personal, non-commercial use. Commercial use is not permitted without prior agreement.
  • Can I contribute my friend’s or institution’s content?
    • You can contribute content that is not copyright protected and that you have permission to contribute. You would need explicit permission from your friend or institution.
  • Can I import/export these phrases into my EHR?
    • It is possible for an administrator to generate a csv file of the dotphrases on this site, however most EHRs do not easily allow importing of dotphrases. You can one-click copy content using the Copy icons next to section headings.

Signup and account creation

  • Should I sign up with my institutional/work email address?
    • In the future, this will allow you access to dotphrases which are shared within your institution. You can change your email address later if you wish.
  • What if I get an error while signing up?
    • Our spam detector may have made a mistake. Please email with your email address you’d like to sign up with
  • How can I edit my profile including my real name and email address?
    • Click the person icon at the upper right, then choose “Account Details”.


  • How do I create a new dotphrase?
    • Click “Add a dotphrase” at the top right.
  • I created a new dotphrase but it doesn’t show up in the browsing listing?
    • If your account isn’t confirmed, your new dotphrases will be reviewed before they are publicly visble.
  • How do I edit an existing dotphrase?
    • Log in then open the dotphrase you’d like to edit. Then click the “Edit dotphrase” button at the top middle, below the black header. 
  • What should I choose for organ system?
    • Choose the single most relevant organ system. In rare cases, you can choose multiple organ systems. If administrative (eg, a message to admin staff), or not fitting another category, choose Admin-Other.
  • What should I choose for medical field?
    • Choose the medical field that you think is most likely to use this dotphrase (Internal medicine, Emergency medicine, Pediatrics, Surgery). 
  • What should I choose for setting?
    • Choose any options if they apply. If neither applies (for example, an administrative dotphrase), choose neither.
  • What is a “favorite” (bookmark)?
    • A favorite is chosen by individual users (by clicking on the heart) so that they can have easy access to these phrases in the future. Favoriting a dotphrase does not affect it’s standing (ie, is not a rating). You can view your favorites after logging in -> hover over account name/icon -> click “Bookmarks”.
  • What is the star rating for?
    • Star ratings are a holistic evaluation of a given dotphrase. Star ratings help the community identify high quality and/or useful dotphrases. There are no guidelines for what is a 5 star vs 1 star dotphrase.
  • What are Chalk Talks?
    • They are brief educational resources usually used to teach medical students or residents clinically relevant material. The ideal way to share these on this site is by uploading a picture of a completed talk. To do this, first find or create a new dotphrase page related to the topic. Then attach a file under the heading “Chalk talk upload”.
  • How can I quickly post a Chalk Talk from my phone without logging in?
    • Email your picture to and it will be posted to the site. Include your name and the topic of the talk in the body of the email. In the future, this process may be automated.

Content suggestions

  • Where can I find best practices for creating dotphrases?
  • What if I want to suggest edits to the “Best practices”?
    • TBD
  • Can I include EHR-specific syntax?
    • Yes, for example *** or @AGE@ are fine.
  • Which dotphrases should be prioritized for submission and editing?
    • There are no strict guidelines. Consider starting with common complaints and diagnoses, for example in internal medicine the top outpatient:
      • Obesity
      • Allergic rhinitis
      • Headache
      • GERD
      • Preventive visit
      • Osteoarthritis
      • Rash
    • Internal medicine top inpatient:
      • Pancreatitis
      • Urinary Tract Infection
      • Endocarditis
  • How do I cite references?
    • Type {ref}this is the reference{/ref} but with square [] brackets instead of curly {} brackets; it will look liks this: [ref]this is the reference[/ref]

Being a page or section editor

  • What qualifications do I need to become a page or section editor?
    • You need to be a resident, fellow or attending in a related field. You must be logged in as a registered user.
  • What does a page editor do?
    • A page editor is responsible for maintaining selected dotphrases. Editors’ duties are to monitor the edits to the page for quality and ideally reach out to experts to solicit review and feedback.
  • What does a section editor do?
    • Similar to a page editor but for a whole category of dotphrases (eg, outpatient cardiology, inpatient hematology).
  • How do I volunteer to be an editor?
    • Page editor: click “Volunteer to maintain this page” near the top middle of the dotphrase. If it doesn’t exist, it is either because you are not logged in or someone else is already assigned.
    • Section editor: Email
  • How can I find pages that need page editors?
    • Log in. If you see “Volunteer to maintain this page” near the top middle of the dotphrase, it is available. 
  • How can I see pages that I’m the section editor for?
    • TBD
  • How can I be notified if a page I’m an editor for has a change?
    • TBD


Content and information do not reflect the views and/or beliefs of the affiliated institutions. Content is for educational purposes only. The information provided is not for medical use, and is not intended to replace personal consultation with a qualified medical professional. Content provided is not applicable to any patient’s specific circumstance. We do not assume any liability or responsibility for damage or injury to any party who uses or comes into contact with any information or content on this site. Information on this site is owned by the site and subject to intellectual property rights under United States, international convention, and foreign laws. You may not re-post content, re-sell content, or make derivative forms of content from this site without the permission of this site in writing.