DÄ internationalArchive1-2/2010Instructions for Authors


Instructions for Authors

Dtsch Arztebl Int 2010; 107(1-2): 20

Deutsches Ärzteblatt publishes material relating to health and social policy (health and social policy department, see 1) on all aspects of medical activity and health care, as well as reviews, original research, case reports, Clinical Practice Guidelines (S3 level), and editorials on clinical medicine and medical science, including health services research (medical scientific department, see 2). Any material submitted for potential publication in Deutsches Ärzteblatt must be submitted exclusively to Deutsches Ärzteblatt, and may not have been previously published, either in Germany or abroad.

With the exception of statements made by the publisher, Deutsches Ärzteblatt does not publish statements by other institutions such as specialist societies or working groups (see 4).

1 Submissions for the health and social policy section
Submissions for the health and social policy section of the journal must be no more than eight pages of 30 lines per page, 60 keystrokes per line. We advise that you use the maximum length only exception-ally and after discussion with the editorial team. Articles for the health and social policy section do not require a structured, IMRAD (introduction, methods, results, and discussion) format, such as that required for the medical scientific section. Please observe the referencing style outlined in 2.2. The health and social policy department reserves the right to publish references on the web only, -independently of length. The regulations described in sections 3 and 4 of this document refer to all articles submitted to Deutsches Ärzteblatt. The number of authors should not exceed three.

2 Submissions for the medical scientific section
The medical scientific section is aimed at all doctors of all specialties, whether office-based or hospital-based. We particularly welcome original research articles. Articles should be clinically relevant, and written in a clear and accessible style. All articles, including commissioned work, will be sent out for external peer review, usually to two reviewers.

Our regulations follow the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals of October 2008 (www.icmje.org/icmje.pdf). The medical scientific section, along with the complete -editorial part of the journal, appears in the print version of Deutsches Aerzteblatt and in an online version at www.aerzteblatt.de. In addition, all articles and correspondence from the medical scientific section are translated into English and published in the open access journal Deutsches Ärzteblatt International (www.aerzteblatt-international.de).

Please submit medical scientific articles via the following internet address: www.editorialmanager.com/daeb.

2.1 Types of article and requirements
Original research, review articles, AND CLINICAL PRACTICE GUIDELINES (S3 LEVEL)

Maximum length 2300 words (excluding abstract) and 25 references (see 2.2), plus up to six illustrations, diagrams, or tables.

– Original research articles should be presented using an IMRAD (introduction, methods, results, and discussion) format. In addition to the ICMJE’s general recommendations, we draw your attention in particular to the following guidelines on the presentation of particular forms of scientific article: www.strobe-statement.org/ (observational studies), www.prima-statement.org/ (systematic reviews and metaanalyses), www.consort-statement.org/ (randomized controlled trials), and www.stard-statement.org/ (diagnostic studies). Authors of original research articles may find the website of the Equator Network helpful: www.equator-network.org/

– Review articles should outline a clear aim or question, and must include a section detailing the method used in compiling the article (for example, details of the literature search).

– Clinical S3 guidelines: Selected guidelines are published in a form specially presented for the Journal. These manuscripts must conform to our instructions for authors of original scientific articles and review articles (for example, regarding the length of the manuscript and the number of authors). S1 and S2 guidelines (based on a lower level of evidence) cannot be considered. Guidelines are published at the discretion of the editorial team. We recommend that you make contact with the editorial team at an early stage.

In presenting statistical material in original research articles, reviews and guidelines, please observe the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals. In particular, relative risk reductions should only be presented alongside absolute risk reductions, and where possible accompanied by a „number needed to treat.“ Where percentages are cited in the text or tables, absolute values should also be given. In addition to p-values, please quote effect sizes and confidence intervals.

Please mark the front sheet of each contribution with the address for correspondence (including telephone number and email address), word count, and number of illustrations, tables and references. The organization within which the contribution was produced should also be named. For original research articles, review articles and guidelines, please also include identical abstracts in German and English of no more than 200 words each, as well as an English translation of the title. Please present the abstracts under the headings of Background, Methods, Results and Conclusions, and make them as concise and concrete as possible, focusing only on the key points.

Please number the pages and lines within the article.

Editorials are usually commissioned by the editor (length: 800 words, up to 10 references).

Letters to the editor
Letters to the editor can only be published as part of the scientific debate in the medical scientific section (see section entitled „Diskussion“). They must offer scientifically justified additions or objections to original research articles, review articles, CME articles or S3 guidelines published in the medical scientific section, and have been submitted within four weeks of publication of the article in question (maximum 250 words, 3 references). The editor reserves the right to select letters for publication and shorten them as necessary. We do not publish correspondence relating to editorials, conference reports or reviews of papers from other journals.

CME articles and conference reports are usually commissioned by the editor, who will be happy to consider suggestions for topics or authors.

key messages
Original research articles and review articles should include a box containing five key clinical messages—preferably clinical ones.

2.2 References
References should support statements made in the text, and be relevant. For original reseearch and review articles only the 25 most important references are published in the print version. Unpublished work (“submitted for publication“ or „personal communication“) and conference abstracts should not be included in the references, but quoted in full, in brackets in the body of the text. Accepted but not yet published material may be cited as „in press.“ The 25 references for the print version are quoted in the text numerically in brackets, and listed at the end in the order quoted (1–25). Essential additional -references can be published additionally in the internet version of the paper and in reprints. These references must be marked with an „e“ and should also be quoted in brackets in the text. These additional references should also be numbered from 1 onwards, and should be listed separately at the end of the article (e1, e2… etc). You will find an example of this quotation style in: Rath W, Fischer T: The diagnosis and treatment of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy: new findings for antenatal and inpatient care [Diagnostik und Therapie hypertensiver Schwangerschaftserkrankungen]. Dtsch Arztebl Int 2009; 106(45): 733–8.

Referencing stylE
– List up to six authors; with seven or more authors, list only the first three, followed by „et al.“

– Journal abbreviations follow the convention used in the „list of journals“ in „Index Medicus“ (www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/ibprog.html).

– Journals
1. Winzer R, Kanig N, Schneitler S, et al.: Early clinical experiences with the new influenza A (H1N1/09) [Erste klinische Erfahrungen mit der Neuen Influenza A (H1N1/09)]. Dtsch Arztebl Int 2009; 106(47): 770–6.
2. Stone J, Smyth R, Carson A, Lewis S, Prescott R, Warlow C, Sharpe M: Systematic review of misdiagnosis of conversion symptoms and „hysteria“. BMJ 2005; 331: 989–91.

– Books
3. Holzgreve W, Tercanli S, Hahn S, Miny P: Pränatale Diagnostik. In: Ganten D, Ruckpaul K (eds.): Molekularmedizinische Grundlagen von fetalen und neonatalen Erkrankungen. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer 2005; 81–97.

– Internet
4. Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie und -psychotherapie: Leitlinien für Diagnostik und Therapie für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie und -psychotherapie. www.uni-duesseldorf.de/WWW/AWMF/ll/ll_kjpp.htm

For further details see: www.nlm.nih.gov/bsd/uniform_requirements.html

2.3 Conflict of interest, ethical approval, consent, authorship, English Translation
– A conflict of interest statement must be completed for each author of each submitted article (see below), including editorials and letters to the editor.

– All original research involving human subjects must be accompanied by evidence of prior ethics committee approval. Authors must supply evidence of informed consent of research participants (patients).

– Authorship is strictly limited to researchers who have made a material contribution to the preparation of the manuscript. A review article can have no more than three authors. For a definition of authorship see www.icmje.org/#author. The corresponding author grants permission for publication on behalf of all authors.

– Where animal studies are reported, evidence of conformity with ethical regulations must be documented (see www.icmje.org).

– The corresponding author will receive proofs of both the German and the English versions.

3 Technical requirements
On completion of the review process, the manuscript will be edited according to in-house principles. Our aim is to make the text as reader friendly as possible, and to unify and clarify figures and tables. Please do not present the manuscript in your own layout.

3.1 Numbers and units
– Numbers linked to units and free standing measures of length, weight, or time should be abbreviated, using the International System of Units (e.g. 20 cm, 50 g, 70 kg, 12 s, 4 h).

– In formulae and tables, the conventional abbreviations are used throughout.

3.2 Abbreviations
– Only internationally recognized abbreviations may be used (such as EEG or DNA). Specialist abbreviations must be spelt out in brackets after their first use.

– General abbreviations should be avoided (use „zum Beispiel“ rather than „z.B.“).

3.3 Spelling
We use the new German spelling convention, which took effect from 1st August 2006, outlined in the 25th edition of Duden “Die Deutsche Rechtschreibung” (German Spelling). For the spelling of medical words, we use the rules laid out in “Pschyrembel—Klinisches Wörterbuch“ (Clinical Dictionary) (261. edition).

American English is used for the English edition, which is modelled on the style guidelines of the American Medical Association’s „Manual of Style“ (10th edition).

3.4 Illustrations, tables, legends
– Digital photographs must be sent as a TIFF or JPEG file, at a resolution of 300 dpi at publication size. Please note: we cannot use illustrations nested within Word or Power Point documents. Photographs at low resolution should not be enlarged.

– Where individuals are recognizable in a photograph, it is the author’s responsibility to seek permission for publication. Where the legal situation regarding personal pictures and other personal material has not been clarified, the editor must be informed. The author is responsible to the publisher in all cases where charges are brought by third parties.

– Tables must be presented on a separate sheet, with a brief title, and legends and additional information presented as footnotes.

– All legends accompanying pictures and diagrams must be submitted on a separate sheet. Tables, diagrams, and figures must, together with the legend, be self-explanatory.

3.5 Medications/dosages
– Generic names must be used. Brand names may only be used in exceptional cases and with justification.

Particular care must be taken in the manuscript and proofs over drug dosages. Where indications, doses, or applications are under discussion for which a licence does not (yet) exist in Germany, this must be made clear.

– Articles are reviewed and edited with great care. Nevertheless we are unable to accept responsibility for accuracy, in particular relating to drug doses. Guidelines and other publications in the medical scientific section of Deutsches Ärzteblatt are not binding and therefore not subject to legal accountability.

– Guidelines, recommendations, and the official recommendations of specialist societies or research bodies can only be published in Deutsches Ärzteblatt if approved by the publishers (the German Medical Association and the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians) and classified as an official communication under their auspices and with their collaboration. This excludes S3 guidelines selected by the editor.

– The authors must state that they hold sole copyright in relation to all parts of their manuscript and that no rights have been granted to other publishers.

Copyright assignment form
With the acceptance of a manuscript exclusive copyright unrestricted in respect of time, place, and content passes to Deutscher Ärzte-Verlag GmbH. This transfer includes the right of the publisher to make use of the work in material or virtual form both in Germany and abroad, and to reproduce the work, in particular in print form, film, radio, on the internet and on databases, telecommunications and data networks as well as on data storage devices (such as CD ROM, diskette and microfilm), to make available for the public for downloading, to reproduce on screen (PC, PDA, etc), and to be printed out by the user, as well as its translation into other languages and distribution within the terms of the above mentioned rights. These rights are also valid in the case of use by third parties where rights have been transferred, both within Germany and abroad. No third parties are linked organizations as specified in para. 15 ff AktG.

Conflict of interest
We ask authors to declare potential conflicts of interest as outlined by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. Authors can find further information in the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals as well as in the editorial „Sponsorship, Authorship and Accountability“ which can be accessed online at www.aerzteblatt.de/Interessenkonflikt. Our declaration of conflict of interest form can be downloaded from our homepage (www.aerzteblatt-international.de/conflict). A conflict of interest exists if an author has financial or personal relationships which could influence the content of the manuscript. The declaration of conflict of interest should take into account the previous five years. The authors agree to the publication of their statement of conflict of interest.

Copyright must be observed in the reproduction of diagrams, tables, and other images from other journals or books. Authors must supply permission for reproduction. The author is responsible to the publisher for all cases where a third party claims infringement of copyright or damage to persons.

Permission for publication
Permission for publication is granted with the approval of proofs, including tables, diagrams, and other illustrations. The editor reserves the right to make last minute changes unilaterally, in relation to controversial expressions, unavoidable technical abbreviations, and the wording of titles and headings at the layout stage.

The instructions for authors can be found at: