I am trying to use the openfda API to get a view of the data in the front end.

This is an example of a front-end search: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfMAUDE/detail.cfm?mdrfoi__id=2094110&pc=OCE

mdr_report_key: 2094110

this is the API query I'm trying:


Examples of data that is missing from the API:


  2. Frontend - Device Sequence Number : 1

  3. Frontend - 1 Device Was Involved in the Event

Essentially any device or report data (description of the event, I believe normally under mdr_text:[]) is missing from the search and does not seem to show up in the API query, even though it's the same mdr_report_key.

It looks like the front end joins together "Followups" to the "Initial Report" data. I was wondering how this is being joined on and how I can combine the data into something that makes sense? Should I ignore all Report_type: "follow up" records?

  • Hello, I'm Jack with the openFDA team. I'm reviewing this now and will get back to you with an answer shortly. Thank you!
    – Jack Finch
    Apr 16, 2020 at 15:28
  • Thanks Jack - if I understand correctly this means that the OpenFDA API and the accessdata front end search are served by different databases (or the API exposes data that is transformed in a different way)? I am wondering why the same mdr_report_key can yield different results from the API and from the accessdata front end. If you could confirm that for me it would be extremely helpful, thanks in advance Apr 20, 2020 at 17:01

1 Answer 1


I'm Jack with the openFDA team. The missing fields you're referencing are normally found within the device object in the openFDA API endpoint for Device Event data. The data source for this object is the downloadable files labeled foidev which can be found here. In this case, these source files do not have an entry for this mdr_report_key, which is why the device object is missing. Apologies for the inconvenience!

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