A bibliometric method based on Science Citation Index-Expanded published by the Thomson Reuters was used to quantitatively assess the global estuary pollution research from 1991 to 2010. The main results were as follows: there had been a notable growth trend in publication outputs. Marine Pollution Bulletin was the most active journal. Environmental sciences were top popular subject categories. USA produced the most single, internationally collaborative, first authored and corresponding authored articles. The Chinese Academy of Sciences was the most productive institute for the total articles. Sediment was the most active research topic, which ranked 1st in article title, article abstract, author keyword, and KeyWords Plus analysis, respectively. Heavy metals received stable focus on a high degree in the field of estuary pollution research. Mostly refractory organic compounds (e.g. PAHs) became more active. Biomarkers and bioaccumulation both were active issues. Eutrophication of estuarine waters receives increasing concern in estuary pollution research.