Journal of the College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan

Excellence in Higher Medical Education

JCPSP’s publisher, the College of Physician and Surgeons Pakistan is the premier postgraduate medical institution of Pakistan, which was established in 1961 under an act of Parliament and runs on the same pattern as Royal Colleges of England and Ireland. CPSP awards postgraduate qualifications of Fellowship, Membership and Diploma upon successful completion of prescribed training and passing of relevant examinations in all the specialties of medicine.

The JCPSP agrees to accept manuscripts prepared in accordance with the “Uniform Requirements submitted to the Biomedical Journals” as approved by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) guidelines, published in the British Medical Journal 1991; 302:334-41, printed in the JCPSP, Vol. 3 No. 2, April – June 1993, updated and reprinted in 2003, 2007, 2008 and September 2012, Vol. 22 (9).
Instructions to Author.
All material submitted for publication should be sent exclusively to the Journal of the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Pakistan. Work that has already been reported in a published paper or is described in a paper sent or accepted elsewhere for publication, should not be submitted. Multiple or duplicate submission of the same work to other journal should be avoided as this fall into the category of publication fraud and are liable for disciplinary consequences, including reporting to Pakistan Medical & Dental Council and Higher Education Commission. A complete report following publication of a preliminary report, usually in the form of an abstract, or a paper that has been presented at a scientific meeting, if not published in full in a proceedings or similar publication, may be submitted. Press reports of meetings will not be considered as breach of this rule, but additional data or copies of tables and illustrations should not amplify such reports. In case of doubt, a copy of the published material should be included with a manuscript for editors' consideration.

Authors can submit their articles by post or by E-mail: publications@cpsp.edu.pk to the Managing Editor, Journal of the College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan. Article can also be submitted by post or by hand on a Compact Disc (CD) with three hard copies (laser copies or inkjet, photocopies are not accepted). Articles submitted by E-mail are preferred mode of submission and do not require any hard copy or CD.

All authors and co-authors must provide their contact telephone/cell numbers and E-mail addresses on the manuscript.

A duly filled-in author's certification proforma is mandatory for publication. The duly signed ACP must be returned to the Journal's office as soon as possible. The sequence / order of the authors on ACP once submitted shall not be changed at any stage.

It is mandatory to provide the institutional ethical review board / committee approval for all research articles, at the time of submission of article.


The editors reserve the right to edit the accepted article to conform to the house-style of the journal.
General archival and linguistic instructions.
Authors should submit the manuscript typed in MS Word. Manuscripts should be written in English in British or American style/format (same style should be followed throughout the whole text), in past tense and third person form of address. Sentences should not start with a number or figure. Any illustrations or photographs should also be sent in duplicate. Components of manuscript should be in the following sequence: a title page (containing names of authors, their postal and Email addresses, fax and phone numbers, including mobile phone number of the corresponding author), abstract, key words, text, references, tables (each table, complete with title and footnotes) and legends for llustrations and photographs. Each component should begin on a new page. The manuscript should be typed in double spacing as a single column on A4 (8-1/2" x 11" or 21.5 cm x 28.0 cm), white bond paper with one inch (2.5 cm) margin on one side.

Sub-headings should not be used in any section of the script except in the abstract. In survey and other studies, comments in verbatim should not be stated from a participating group. Acknowledgements are only printed for financing of a study or for acknowledging a previous linked work.

From January 2015, all randomized trials should also provide a proof of being registered at the International RCT Registry.
Material for Publication.
The material submitted for publication may be in the form of an Original research (Randomized controlled trial - RCT, Meta-analysis of RCT, Quasi experimental study, Case Control study, Cohort study, Observational Study with statistical support etc), a Review Article, Commentary, a Case Report, Recent Advances, New techniques, Debates, Adverse Drug Reports, Current Practices, Clinical Practice Article, Short Article, KAP (Knowledge, Attitudes, Practices) study, An Audit Report, Evidence Based Report, Short Communication or a Letter to the Editor. Ideas and Innovations can be reported as changes made by the authors to an existing technique or development of a new technique or instrument. A mere description of a technique without any practical experience or innovation will be considered as an update and not an original article. Any study ending three years prior to date of submission is judged by Editorial Board for its suitability as many changes take place over the period of time, subject to area of the study. Studies more than three years old are not entertained. In exceptional cases, if Editorial Board is of the view that data is important, an extension of one year may be granted. JCPCP also does not accept multiple studies/multiple end publications gathered/derived from a single research project or data (wholly or in part) known as 'salami slices'.

Original articles should normally report original research of relevance to clinical medicine. The original paper should be of about 2000-2500 words excluding abstract and references. It should contain a structured abstract of about 250 words. Three to 10 keywords should be given for an original article as per MeSH (Medical Subject Headings). There should be no more than three tables or illustrations. The data should be supported with 20 to 25 references, which should include local as well as international references. Most of the references should be from last five years from the date of submission.

Clinical Practice Article is a category under which all simple observational case series are entertained. The length of such article should be around 1500 - 1600 words with 15 - 20 references. The rest of the format should be that of an original article. KAP studies, Audit reports, Current Practices, Survey reports and Short Articles are also written on the format of Clinical Practice Article. Evidence based reports must have at least 10 cases and word count of 1000 - 1200 words with 10 - 12 references and not more than 2 tables or illustrations. It should contain a non-structured abstract of about 150 words. Short communications should be of about 1000 - 1200 words, having a non-structured abstract of about 150 words with two tables or illustrations and not more than 10 references. Clinical case reports must be of academic and educational value and provide relevance of the disease being reported as unusual. Brief or negative research findings may appear in this section. The word count of case report should be 800 words with a minimum of 3 key words. It should have a non-structured abstract of about 100 - 150 words (case specific) with maximum of 5 - 6 references. Not more than 2 figures shall be accepted.

Review article should consist of critical overview/analysis of some relatively narrow topic providing background and the recent development with the reference of original literature. It should incorporate author's original work on the same subject. The length of the review article should be of 2500 to 3000 words with minimum of 40 and maximum of 60 references. It should have non-structured abstract of 150 words with minimum 3 key words. An author can write a review article only if he/she has written a minimum of three original research articles and some case reports on the same topic.

Letters should normally not exceed 400 words, with not more than 5 references and be signed by all the authors-maximum 3 are allowed. Preference is given to those that take up points made in contributions published recently in the journal. Letters may be published with a response from the author of the article being discussed. Discussions beyond the initial letter and response will not be entertained for publication. Letters to the editor may be sent for peer review if they report a scientific data. Editorials are written upon invitation.

Between 3 to 10 key words should be given for all the category of manuscripts under the abstracts as per mesh [medical subject heading].
Dissertation / Thesis Based Article.
An article, based on dissertation, approved by REU [Research Evaluation Unit] of CPSP, which was submitted as part of the requirement for a Fellowship examination of the CPSP, can be sent for publication provided the data is not more than three years old. A copy of approval letters of synopsis and dissertation obtained from REU must be submitted with the research paper.

Approval of synopsis from REU is required for two research articles submitted for publication in JCPSP from candidates opting to write and publish articles in lieu of dissertation for appearing in first Fellowship examination of CPSP. Approval of synopsis is not required for an article submitted for publication for second fellowship examination in lieu of dissertation. The main difference between an article and a dissertation is the length of the manuscript, word count, illustrations and reference numbers. Dissertation based article should be re-written in accordance with the journal's instructions to the author guidelines.

Article shall undergo routine editorial processing including external review based upon which final decision shall be made for publication. Such articles, if approved, shall be published under the disclosure by author that 'it is a Dissertation based article'.
Ethical Considerations.
If tables, illustrations or photographs, which have already been published, are included, a letter of permission for re-publication should be obtained from author (s) as well as the editor of the journal where it was previously published. Written permission to reproduce photographs of patients, whose identity is not disguised, should be sent with the manuscript; otherwise the eyes will be blackened out. If a medicine is used, generic name should be used. The commercial name may, however, be mentioned only within brackets, only if necessary. In case of medicine or device or any material indicated in text, a declaration by author/s should be submitted that no monetary benefit has been taken from manufacturer/importer of that product by any author. In case of experimental interventions, permission from ethical committee of the hospital should be taken beforehand. Any other conflict of interest must be disclosed. All interventional studies submitted for publication should carry Institutional Ethical & Research Committee approval letter.

Ethical consideration regarding the intervention, added cost of test, and particularly the management of control in case-control comparisons of trials should be addressed: multi-centric authors' affiliation may be asked to be authenticated by provision of permission letters from ethical boards or the heads of involved institutes.
Tables and Illustrations.
Legends to illustrations should be typed on the same sheet. Tables should be simple, and should supplement rather than duplicate information in the text; tables repeating information will be omitted. Each table should have a title and be typed in double space without horizontal and vertical lines on an 8-1/2" x 11" (21.5 x 28.0 centimeters) paper. Tables should be numbered consecutively with Roman numerals in the order they are mentioned in the text. Page number should be in the upper right corner. If abbreviations are used, they should be explained in footnotes. When Graphs, scatter grams, or histograms are submitted, the numerical data on which they are based should be supplied. All graphs should be made with MS Excel and other Windows/Macintosh compatible software such as SAS and be sent as a separate Excel file, even if merged in the manuscript.
S.I. Units.
System International (S.I) Unit measurement should be used. Imperial measurement units like inches, feet etc are not acceptable.
Figures and Photographs.
Photographs, X-rays, CT scans, MRI and photomicrographs should be sent in digital format with a minimum resolution of 3.2 mega pixels in JPEG compression. Photographs must be sharply focused. Most photographs taken with a mobile phone camera do not fulfill the necessary requirements and, therefore, not acceptable for printing. The background of photographs must be neutral and preferably white. The photographs submitted must be those originally taken as such by a camera without manipulating them digitally. The hard copy of the photographs if sent, must be unmounted, glossy prints, 5" x 7" (12.7 x 17.3 centimeters) in size. They may be in black and white or in color. Negatives, transparencies, and X-ray films should not be submitted. Numerical number of the figure and the name of the article should be written on the back of each figure/photograph. Scanned photographs must have 300 or more dpi resolution. The author must identify the top of the figure. These figures and photographs must be cited in the text in consecutive order. Legends for photomicrographs should indicate the magnification, internal scale and the method of staining. Photographs of published articles will not be returned. If photographs of patients are used, either they should not be identifiable or the photographs should be accompanied by written permission to use them.
References :
References should be numbered in the order in which they are cited in the text. At the end of the article, the full list of references should give the names and initials of all authors (if there are more than six, only the first six should be given followed by et al.). The authors' names are followed by the title of the article; title of the journal, abbreviated according to the style of the Index Medicus (see "List of Journals Indexed," printed yearly in the January issue of Index Medicus); year, volume and page number; e.g.: Hall RR. The healing of tissues by C02 laser. Br J Surg 1971; 58:222-225 (Vancouver style). Reference to books should give the names of editors, place of publication, publisher, year and page numbers. The author must verify the references against the original documents before submitting the article. The Editorial Board may ask authors to submit either soft or hard copy (full length) of all the articles cited in the reference part of the manuscript.
Abstract
Abstract of an original article should be in structured format with the following subheadings:

i. Objective. ii. Design. iii. Place & duration of study. iv. Patients & Methods. v. Results. vi. Conclusion. Four elements should be addressed: why was the study started, what was done, what was found, and what did it mean? Why was the study started is the objective. What was done constitutes the methodology and should include patients or other participants, interventions, and outcome measures. What was found is the results, and what did it mean constitutes the conclusion. Label each section clearly with the appropriate subheadings. Background is not needed in an abstract. The total word count of abstract should be about 250 words. A minimum of 3 Key words as per MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) should be written at the end of abstract.

A non-structured abstract should be written as case specific statement for case reports with a minimum of three key words.
Introduction.
This section should include the purpose of the article after giving brief literature review strictly related to objective of the study. The rationale for the study or observation should be summarized. Only strictly pertinent references should be cited and the subject should not be extensively reviewed. It is preferable not to cite more than 10 references in this segment. Pertinent use of reference to augment support from literature is warranted which means, not more than 2 to 3 references be used for an observation. Data, methodology or conclusion from the work being reported should not be presented in this section. It should end with a statement of the study objective.
Methods.
Study design and sampling methods should be mentioned. Obsolete terms such as retrospective studies should not be used. The selection of the observational or experimental subjects (patients or experimental animals, including controls) should be described clearly. The methods and the apparatus used should be identified (with the manufacturer's name and address in parentheses), and procedures be described in sufficient detail to allow other workers to reproduce the results. References to established methods should be given, including statistical methods. References and brief descriptions for methods that have been published but are not well-known should be provided; only new or substantially modified methods should be described in detail, giving reasons for using them, and evaluating their limitations. All drugs and chemicals used should be identified precisely, including generic name (s), dose(s), and route(s) of administration.

For statistical analysis, the specific test used should be named, preferably with reference for an uncommon test. Exact p-values and 95% confidence interval (CI) limits must be mentioned instead of only stating greater or less than level of significance. All percentages must be accompanied with actual numbers. SPSS output sheet must be attached with manuscript to clarify results (p-values).
Results.
These should be presented in a logical sequence in the text, tables, and illustrations. All the data in the tables or illustrations should not be repeated in the text; only important observations should be emphasized or summarized with due statement of demographic details. No opinion should be given in this part of the text.
Discussion.
This section should include author's comment on the results, supported with contemporary references, including arguments and analysis of identical work done by other workers. Study limitations should also be mentioned. A summary is not required. JCPSP does not publish any acknowledgement to the work done. Any conflict of interest, however, must be mentioned at the end of discussion in a separate heading.
Conclusion.
Conclusion should be provided under separate heading and highlight new aspects arising from the study. It should be in accordance with the objectives. No recommendations are needed under this heading.
Peer Review
Every paper will be read by at least two staff editors of the Editorial Board. The papers selected will then be sent to two external reviewers. If statistical analysis is included, further examination by a staff statistician will be carried out. The staff Bibliographer also examines and authenticates the references and checks for plagiarism.
Assurances.
Authors should provide the following information in appropriate places in the manuscript:
  • A statement that the research protocol was approved by the relevant institutional review boards or ethics committees and that all the participants gave written informed consent, if applicable,
  • The identity of those who analyzed the data.
Authors of original research articles are not required to submit a formal Financial Disclosure Form at the time of submission. The journal's editor shall request it later, if necessary. However, authors should notify major conflicts of interest or the source of funding in their covering letter.
Conflict of Interest.
Authors of research articles should disclose at the time of revision any financial arrangement they may have with a company whose product is pertinent to the submitted manuscript or with a company making a competing product. Such information will be held in confidence while the paper is under review and will not influence the editorial decision, but if the article is accepted for publication, a disclosure statement will appear with the article.

Because the essence of reviews and editorials is selection and interpretation of the literature, the Journal expects that authors of such articles will not have any significant financial interest in a company (or its competitor) that makes a product discussed in the article.
Abbreviations.
Except for units of measurement, the first time an abbreviation appears, it should be preceded by the words for which it stands.
Drug Name.
Generic names should be used. When proprietary brands are used in research, include the brand name and the name of the manufacturer in parentheses after first mentioning of the generic name in the Methods section.
Authorship Criteria.
As stated in the Uniform Requirements, credit for authorship requires substantial contributions to (a) the conception and design or analysis and interpretation of the data, (b) the drafting of the article or critical revision for important intellectual content, critical appraisal of findings with literature search and actual write up of manuscript, (c) final approval of the version to be published. Each author must sign a statement attesting that he or she fulfills the authorship criteria of the Uniform Requirements.

Only six authors are allowed in a single institution study. In a multi institution and international collaboration research Editorial Board shall guide on individual case basis.

JCPSP strongly discourages gift authorship. Mere supervision, collection of data, statistical analysis and language correction do not grant authorship rights. Ideally all authors should belong to same department of an institute, except for multi-centre and multi-specialty studies.

The Journal discourages submission of more than one article dealing with related aspects of the same study. The journal also discourages the submission of case reports unless unreported from Pakistan. Unusual but already reported cases should, therefore, be submitted as letters to the editor.
Reprints.
Three copies of the journal will be sent to the corresponding author.
Copyright.
The Journal of College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan is the owner of all copyright to any work published by the journal. Authors agree to execute copyright transfer of their Forms-ACP (Authors Certification Proforma) as requested with respect to their contributions accepted by the journal.

Material printed in this journal being the copyright of the JCPSP, may not be reproduced without the permission of the editors or publisher. Instructions to authors appear on the last page of each issue. Prospective authors should consult these before submitting their articles and other material for publication. The JCPSP accepts only original material for publication with the understanding that except for abstracts, no part of the data has been published or will be submitted for publication elsewhere before appearing in this journal. The Editorial Board makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and authenticity of material printed in the journal. However, conclusions and statements expressed are views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Editorial Board or the CPSP. Publishing of advertising material does not imply an endorsement by the CPSP.