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MS SQL Server/Joining on "Similar" records



Working with SQL 2008. Have 2 tables. Both are a list of all the items 2 different Hospitals purchase. Table A has about 80,000 recordds , table B has 60,000. I want to Join the 2 tables on the description field. However I want to join when they are similar. Such as A = '001_ABC-Bandaid 3x5' B = '1 ABC Bandaid 5x3'.

Any ideas???



Hi Richard,
The requirement is a tricky one.

The best approach as per my knowledge would have been to create a catalog table which would be the master table for items such as "ABC Bandaid", and then map its value to Hospital A or B.

I know, its too late to do that now being a massive list you have got.

Well, in your case, is it true that the descriptions will always be 3 part?
E.g.: 001_ABC-Bandaid 3x5
part 1: quantity - 001
part 2: name - ABC-Bandaid
part 3: size - 3x5

You should first find ABC-Bandaid using a separators as underscore or space.
Then, create pure name ABC Bandaid from ABC-Bandaid. You will find code of functions online which can ignore all special characters and replace with space.

And then compare values from A and B.

Please feel free to follow-up.


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Jwalant Natvarlal Soneji


From general queries about SQL Severs both 2000 and 2005 to advanced features like Integration Services and Reporting Services.


Experience in the area: I have been working with database triggers, stored procedures, views, function, joins, dts, Query optimization. Education/Credentials: BE IT - 2005 Batch with First Class.


BE IT, India

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