||As personal computers become more cost-effective and user-friendly, they are bound to play an increasing role in the practice of medicine. This article is a description of how a commercially available database system adapted for medical record keeping has greatly facilitated the storage and retrieval of information. The designation of a data file for storage of patient records through the use of the systems menus, data entry, and conduct of searches for particular bits of data are described. Unique features such as custom-tailored computer reminders and project-specific programming are recommended as ways to improve the effectiveness of patient care and clinical research. When a single database system is used, the cost in terms of time, money and expertise is dramatically decreased, allowing the physician to optimize all aspects of the practice of medicine of exploiting computer technology with minimal to no knowledge of computer languages and/or programming.