How to use the iPad to save medical literature from PubMed to Dropbox, video demonstration

How to find and upload an academic paper into Dropbox
(Click the above picture to view the video)

Dropbox is a wonderful resource. It is a hassle free method of keeping all your documents and files in sync across all your mobile devices and home pc, as noted in our original article on Dropbox in Medicine,

The attraction of Dropbox is the downloadable client which creates a folder on your computer called ‘Dropbox’. Any files or folders placed within this folder will be automatically uploaded to Dropbox’s servers (as long as you have adequate space). This folder (and all its contents) are now accessible from a range of sources including the official Dropbox Apps for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone 7.

The immediate usage of Dropbox for healthcare professionals is the ability to access files and folders from anywhere — especially on your iPad. It is no longer necessary to carry around a USB stick to transfer documents.

Dropbox is the all important wireless link between your home pc and mobile device. This video contains a brief tutorial that will show you how to download an academic medical paper using your iPad from PubMed into Dropbox and access it from a range of devices, including your home PC.


  • Enable the reader to find a PDF article using Pubmed
  • To use the ‘Open In’ tab to open the PDF in Dropbox
  • To understand the concept of Dropbox and how it can be used to transfer files between the home PC


iTunes Link


Tom Lewis


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6 Responses to How to use the iPad to save medical literature from PubMed to Dropbox, video demonstration

  1. Iltifat Husain, MD June 4, 2012 at 11:25 pm #

    Love the video Tom, great work!

  2. SteveW25561 June 8, 2012 at 2:17 am #

    I was intrigued by this and your other video showing you can upload files to Dropbox using the open in… Menu. I can’t replicate this on my iPad 3 running iOS 5.1.1 and Dropbox v 1.4.7.

    I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled the Dropbox app to no avail.

    My “Open in…” menu does show other apps like GoodReader, iBooks, adobe reader, and others.

    What version of Dropbox do you have?

    • Tom Lewis June 8, 2012 at 2:27 am #

      The problem you describe is quite a common one amongst iPad power users. The open in button will only show a maximum of 10 apps even if you have more than that. The only solution is to delete and reinstall some of the apps which currently appear in your open in list. This will cause the iPad to add a new app which you can send PDFs to. Unfortunately you have no control over which app your iPad will pick so you may end up having to delete a number of apps before you get Dropbox to show up.

      Hope that helps,


  3. Steve June 8, 2012 at 3:48 am #


    Thanks so much for that tip! It worked. Up until now I used Good Reader to open a pdf and then uploaded to Dropbox in GoodReader. It was so cumbersome. Your tip enhanced my iPad useage significantly! Thanks!

  4. Alistair Erskine June 18, 2012 at 1:06 am #

    Another useful tool for those iOS Dropbox powerusers is “Drop Manager” – it does cost $0.99 but it is worth the ability to add, modify, download local copies of your Dropbox files/folders. iTunes link:

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