International Journal of Clinical Practice

Cover image for Vol. 71 Issue 6

Edited By: Leslie Citrome

Impact Factor: 2.226

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2015: 38/155 (Medicine General & Internal)

Online ISSN: 1742-1241

Author Guidelines

CONTENTS (this revision October 2013)


HOW TO SUBMIT - Links and contacts
PRE-SUBMISSION GUIDE AND QUERIES -Want an informal opinion before you submit?
GUIDELINES AND CHECKLIST- Use our guidelines and checklist to help prepare your manuscript

SPECIAL NOTICE - Authors of Technology Appraisals please contact the IJCP Editorial Office for more information:

99% of IJCP’s readers access the journal electronically, and from 2014 Wiley will publish the journal exclusively online. However, paper subscriptions and individual copies will be available Print on Demand (POD) from a third party supplier.


EXPEDITED: Publish your clinical trials faster. EXPEDITED is the new priority publication service from IJCP exclusively for well conducted, well reported clinical trials. Priority peer review: 7 working days from online submission. Priority proofs: 7 working days from 'accept' decision. Priority online: 7 working days from proof approval to Early View publication. Exclusively for clinical trials (interventional and observational studies). Click here for more information.

Timelines: rapid, robust peer review and publication. IJCP offers a rapid, robust service for papers that do not qualify for EXPEDITED. An example: paper received 3 October 2006, accepted 10 November 2006, online 5 December 2006, print 8 January 2007. If you let us know about your paper before submitting, we will arrange rapid peer review. Our average peer review times are around 20 working days. Proofs can be delivered around 10 working days after 'accept' decision. Early View publication can be around 10 working days after proof approval. Contact us before submission for fastest standard process.

This journal now uses eLocators. For more information, please visit the Author Services eLocator page here.

Early View. The fastest form of publication online ahead of print. Early View papers are indexed in Medline/PubMed, and can be cited using permanent Digital Object Identifier (DOI).

OnlineExtra supplementary material. IJCP articles can be accompanied by slideshows to help explain and illustrate key concepts. Use our OnlineExtra PowerPoint template; other digital media can also be included. Supplementary material, slideshows or supporting data, should draw exclusively from or support material presented in your manuscript.

Content syndication in partnership with delivers IJCP authors broader reach, notably in the US, by free online distribution.

PR for Articles. IJCP informs the world's medical and lay press immediately before selected IJCP content is published, amplifying reach and impact.

Contributors first: Any other questions?
IJCP exists to serve your needs. We offer you the highest standards of service. If you need information not provided here please email the IJCP Editorial Office.

HOW TO SUBMIT All manuscripts should be submitted online (MS Word or similar, not PDF).

FAQs and tips about preparing and submitting manuscripts, automated email tracking and more at the Wiley Author Services website.

The journal to which you are submitting your manuscript employs a plagiarism detection system. By submitting your manuscript to this journal you accept that your manuscript may be screened for plagiarism against previously published works.

Want an informal opinion before you submit? For informal and rapid pre-submission guidance, send your abstract and brief letter explaining why your manuscript is suitable by email to the IJCP Editorial Office and we'll be in touch.

If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login into Author Services; where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors on the paper.

For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement
If the OnlineOpen option is not selected the corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:
CTA Terms and Conditions

For authors choosing OnlineOpen
If the OnlineOpen option is selected the corresponding author will have a choice of the following Creative Commons License Open Access Agreements (OAA):

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License OAA
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial -NoDerivs License OAA

To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services and visit

If you select the OnlineOpen option and your research is funded by The Wellcome Trust and members of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK requirements. For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit:

For RCUK and Wellcome Trust authors click on the link below to preview the terms and conditions of this license:
Creative Commons Attribution License OAA

To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services and visit

Read IJCP Editorial Policy for manuscript types considered and IJCP peer review process.

IJCP no longer publishes case reports.

Checklist. Use our submission checklist to help prepare your submission.

Note to NIH grantees. Pursuant to NIH mandate, Wiley Blackwell will post the accepted version of contributions authored by NIH grant-holders to PubMed Central upon acceptance. This accepted version will be made publicly available 12 months after publication. For further information, see

Note on the PEER Project. This journal is participating in the PEER Project, an EU-funded initiative to examine the impact on scholarly journals of depositing accepted manuscripts in web-based repositories. If the corresponding author is based in an EU country, we will deposit the accepted manuscript into the central project repository (DRIVER). The article’s availability will be subject to a post-publication embargo. This project has no effect on your rights or obligations under the terms of the copyright agreement pertaining to this journal.

Standards. Materials should comply with the ICMJE Uniform Requirements. EQUATOR reporting guidelines and checklists (e.g. CONSORT, STROBE, STARD, QUOROM, MOOSE) should be used when appropriate.

Suitability. Your cover letter should explain why your manuscript is suitable for publication in IJCP.

Title. Concise and informative title (read Optimizing for Search Engines).

Authors. Names department(s) and institution(s) of all authors. (In online submission system, confirm that all listed authors meet ICMJE authorship criteria and that nobody who qualifies for authorship has been excluded. Credit for authorship should be based on: [1] substantial contributions to research design, or the acquisition, analysis or interpretation of data; [2] drafting the paper or revising it critically; [3] approval of the submitted and final versions. Authors should meet all three criteria.) Corresponding author. Name, address, email address, telephone and fax numbers. (Corresponding author should take responsibility for communicating with all other authors and getting their approval for the final version to be published. During online submission corresponding authors can nominate an individual, who may or may not be an author, to assist them with administration of the publication process.)

Author contributions. Include a short description of each authors' contribution immediately before your references. (Examples of categories for authors' contributions: Concept/design, Data analysis/interpretation, Drafting article, Critical revision of article, Approval of article, Statistics, Funding secured by, Data collection, Other.)

Access to data. You will be asked during online submission to confirm that authors had access to the study data that support the publication.

Research papers: 'What's known?' and 'What's new?'. After your abstract please answer these questions: 'What is already known about this topic?' (2 or 3 short sentences; 70 words) and 'What does this article add?' (2 or 3 short sentences; 70 words).

Review papers: 'Review Criteria' and 'Message for the clinic'. After your abstract please answer these questions: 'How did you gather, select and analyze the info you considered in your review?' (2 or 3 short sentences; 70 words) and 'What is the take-home message for the clinician?' (2 or 3 short sentences; 70 words).

Review papers: Non-systematic/narrative reviews. Reviews that are not systematic will be considered only if they include a discrete Methods section that must explicitly describe the authors’ approach. Special priority will be given to systematic reviews.

Letters: Please restrict your word count to approximately 500 words.

Disclosures (title page under heading 'Disclosures'). For each author, disclose potential conflicts of interest, including all relevant financial interests (e.g. employment, significant share ownership, patent rights, consultancy, research funding) in any company or institution that might benefit from the publication (or state 'none'). Authors might consider, as a guide for financial disclosures, reporting interests where the sums concerned are above USD10,000 or the equivalent of >5% of an author's gross income. Authors do not need to report the sums concerned.

Funding and Acknowledgements (under heading 'Acknowledgements' before references). State sources of funding for the research and its publication, or for the publication (or state 'none'), including a short description of involvement of the funder in study design, data collection, data analysis, manuscript preparation and/or publication decisions. Acknowledge individuals who do not qualify as authors but who contributed to the study or manuscript (or state 'none'). Contributions that should be acknowledged include administrative, technical, or material forms of support like writing assistance, literature searching, data analysis, administrative support, supply of materials. (Authors should secure approval from anyone listed in acknowledgements.)

Research ethics. You will be asked during online submission to confirm that your study has been approved by relevant bodies (e.g. institutional review boards, research ethics committees) and that appropriate consent was obtained for studies involving human participants.

Appendix (e.g. list of participating physicians). Optional. Use an appendix immediately following references to list further details related to clinical studies like participating physicians, clinical and coordinating centers (which should be presented in the most concise form possible, i.e. not tabulated).

Supporting Information (e.g. OnlineExtra slideshows). Supporting Information can be a useful way for an author to include important but ancillary information with the online version of an article. Examples of Supporting Information include additional tables, data sets, figures, movie files, audio clips, 3D structures, and other related nonessential multimedia files. Supporting Information should be cited within the article text, and a descriptive legend should be included. It is published as supplied by the author, and a proof is not made available prior to publication; for these reasons, authors should provide any Supporting Information in the desired final format. For further information on recommended file types and requirements for submission, please visit:

Tables. All tables should be mentioned in the text and individually numbered. Tables should be presented together and separated from the main text. They should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text, and each should have a short explanatory caption. Each table column should have a short heading. Any tables previously published should be submitted with the written consent of the copyright holder, an acknowledgement should be included in the caption, and the full reference included in the reference list.

Illustrations. For detailed information about preparing and submitting digital images, please register at the Wiley Blackwell Author Services website and refer to the 'Author Resources' pages.

Illustrations will only be accepted if provided electronically (TIFF preferred; JPEG, GIF, EPS, PNG Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Excel also acceptable); they should be professionally drawn, labelled and photographed; freehand lettering is not acceptable. Staining techniques and the magnification of micrographs should be stated, and arrows/abbreviations explained in the captions. If the subjects of photographs are identifiable, either their eyes should be masked or their written permission to use the photograph be submitted with the manuscript. Any information (including personal data) that could enable a patient to be identified should be removed.

All illustrations and figures should be mentioned in the text and individually numbered. Only those essential to the paper should be included. Illustrations and figures should be presented together and separated from the main text. They should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text, and each should have a short explanatory caption. Any illustrations and figures previously published should be submitted with the written consent of the copyright holder, an acknowledgement should be included in the caption, and the full reference included in the list.

Guidelines for Cover Submissions. If you would like to send suggestions for artwork related to your manuscript to be considered to appear on the cover of the journal, please follow these general guidelines.

Measurements, abbreviations, drug names. Measurements should be given in the units in which they were made, but non-metric units must be accompanied by metric (SI) equivalents (exceptions: blood pressure in mmHg; haemoglobin in g/dl). Generic drug names should be used (drug brand names must not be used). If an acronym is used, the term for which it stands should be given in full at its first mention in the text, for example, anti-diuretic hormone (ADH).

References. Original textual matter quoted from other authors must have formal citation and be appropriately attributed and referenced. Authors should verify references against the original documents. The spelling of the author(s) name(s) and the year of publication should match in the text citation and in the reference list. The Edit Express citation checker should catch any discrepancies. The AMS style is used. Make sure that AMS reference titles are in AMS house style.

For more guidance about how to reference and cite, please refer to the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals, prepared by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors.

Proofs. Proofs will be sent to the designated corresponding author. (During online submission corresponding authors can nominate an individual, who may or may not be an author, to assist them with administration of the publication process.)

English A high standard of written English language is important for easy understanding internationally. Authors who are not fluent English language writers are recommended to ensure that their manuscript is copy-edited by a native English speaker prior to submission. See Wizard and Author Services for recommended assistance.

IJCP's author guidelines were prepared with reference to Best Practice Guidelines on Publication Ethics: a Publisher's Perspective (Graf C, Wager, E, Bowman A et al. Int J Clin Pract 2007;61[s152]:1-26). IJCP is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics.

Manuscripts concerned with human studies must contain statements indicating that informed, written consent has been obtained, that studies have been performed according to the Declaration of Helsinki, and that the procedures have been approved by a local ethics committee. If individuals might be identified from a publication (e.g. from images) authors must obtain explicit consent from the individual.

Serious Research Misconduct
Very rarely, the Editors may have cause to suspect serious research misconduct, based on comments received or his/her own review of a paper. In this case, the article in question will be held in abeyance until this matter is resolved. The Editors will contact authors and any appropriate third party to ascertain whether the grounds for investigation are justified. If serious research misconduct is discovered, the Editors will contact the authors’ institutions after rejecting the paper.

Despite vigorous peer-review, it is possible that a paper that is fraudulent in some manner may be published. If this is discovered, it will immediately be retracted and appropriate steps will be taken to notify readers of the journal, and the authors’ institution. Retractions will include the word ‘Retraction’ in the title, so that they are identified as such on indexing systems, for example, PubMed.

In any case of serious research misconduct, all authors of such an article will be banned from future publication in IJCP.

Plagiarism and falsification of data
The Journal carefully scrutinises all papers for evidence of plagiarism and falsified data using CrossCheck software. This encompasses the following:
• multiple submission (i.e. to several journals at the same time)
• redundant publication (i.e. when the same data are published repeatedly, especially when articles contain an unacceptable degree of overlap but some original data, or in the case of the first time data are published (followed by subsequent redundant publications) when retraction would deprive readers of potentially useful data)
• self-plagiarism
• reviewer misconduct (e.g. a reviewer making use of material obtained during review) • changes to authorship after publication due to discovery of guest or ghost authors
• deliberate omission of funding or competing interest information.

Honest errors - publication of corrections
The Journal has a duty to publish corrections (errata) when errors could affect the interpretation of data or information, whatever the cause of the error (i.e. arising from author or publisher errors). It is important to set the scientific record straight.

The title of the Erratum will include the words 'Erratum'. They are published on a numbered page and are listed in the Journal's table of contents. They will cite the original article and be linked to it, so that indexing and abstracting services are able to identify and link to both the erratum and the original paper. Reasons for publishing an Erratum are clearly stated.


Decisions on manuscripts or on ethical misconduct are regarded as final; however, we recognise the right of an individual to challenge our decisions and seek an appeal. For appeals on manuscripts, one of the Journal's Associate Editors will be appointed to conduct an inquiry independent of the Editor and render a final binding decision. For appeals on ethical issues, the Associate Editor will be given full access to the submitted materials and all correspondence. He/she will conduct an inquiry independent of the Editor and Editorial Board and render a final binding decision.

Handling Editors' conflicts of interest and publications by the Editors or Editorial Board
Editors or Editorial Board members are never involved in editorial decisions about their own research work. Journal editors, Editorial Board members and other editorial staff (including peer reviewers) withdraw from discussions about submissions where any circumstances might prevent him/her offering unbiased editorial decisions. When making editorial decisions about peer reviewed articles where an editor is an author or is acknowledged as a contributor, affected editors or staff members exclude themselves and are not involved in the publication decision. When editors are presented with papers where their own interests may impair their ability to make an unbiased editorial decision, he/she deputises decisions about the paper to a suitably qualified individual.

Editors' duty of confidentiality to authors
The Editors of IJCP treat all submitted manuscripts as confidential documents, which means they will not divulge information about a manuscript to anyone without the authors’ permission. During the process of manuscript review, the following people may also have access to manuscripts: • Editors and editorial staff at the IJCP. • External reviewers, including statisticians and experts in trial methods. • Third parties (the only occasion when details about a manuscript might be passed to a third party without the authors’ permission if there is reason to suggest serious research misconduct—see above).

Clinical trials - registration. Provide clinical trial registration number and registry name at the end of your abstract.

Clinical trials - data posting. If trial data are posted online before submission and peer reviewed publication, provide clinical trial results database number and database name at the end of your abstract.

Prior Publication. You will be asked during online submission to confirm that the submitted work is not published, in press or currently being considered for publication elsewhere. (Abstracts, presentations at scientific meetings and clinical trial data posting should be indicated in your cover letter. Publication of abstracts, presentations at scientific meetings and subsequent press coverage will not jeopardise full publication in IJCP. Posting of clinical trials results in databases [data without interpretation, discussion, context or full conclusions in the form of tables and text to describe data/information where this is not easily presented in tabular form] prior to submission to IJCP will not jeopardize full peer reviewed publication in IJCP.)