When submitting a paper, the author should always make a full statement to the editor about all submissions and previous reports that might be regarded as redundant or duplicate publication of the same or very similar work. If redundant or duplicate publication is attempted or occurs without such notification, authors may face a prompt rejection of the submitted manuscript. If the editor was not aware of the violations and the article has already been published, then the article might warrant retraction with or without the author’s explanation or approval.
Acceptable Secondary Publication: The authors should receive approval from the editors of both journals; the editor concerned with secondary publication must have a photocopy, reprint or manuscript of the primary version. A suitable footnote on the title page must be added reading: “This article is based on a study first reported in the (title of journal, with full reference)”.
Further details of acceptable secondary publications can be viewed at ICMJE website
Types of manuscripts:
Original research, Original in-depth, clinical or basic science investigations that aim to change clinical practice or the understanding of a disease process. Article types include, but are not limited to, clinical trials, before-and-after studies, cohort studies, case-control studies, cross-sectional surveys, and diagnostic test assessments.
Basic Requirements: Structured abstract 250 words, maximum 3000 word count, maximum 35 references, maximum 02 images excluding graphs, 02 graphs and 02 tables. The manuscripts must be prepared according to the standard reporting guidelines: examples include CONSORT for randomized trials, STROBE for observational studies, and meta-analyses, STARD for studies of diagnostic accuracy, SRQR for qualitative research, AGREE for reporting of clinical practice guidelines, ARRIVE for animal preclinical studies etc.
Further details of reporting guidelines can be retrieved from EQUATOR Network and the NLM's Research Reporting Guidelines and Initiatives. Any clinical trials submitted for publication must be registered through Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) or Clinical trial registry. Evidence of registration must be submitted before processing of article failing which shall lead to decline in further processing and /or publication of article.
Systematic review (including meta-analysis):
Critical assessments of literature and data sources on important clinical topics. Systematic reviews that reduce bias with explicit procedures to select, appraise, and analyze studies are highly preferred over traditional narrative reviews. The review may include a meta-analysis, or statistical synthesis of data from separate, but similar, studies and must be prepared according to PRISMA reporting guidelines.
Basic Requirements: Structured abstract 250 words, maximum 4500 word count, maximum 100 references, 10 figures and 04 tables.
Communication of a novel, scientifically based opinion or insight as an independent contribution, or regarding a manuscript published in the journal in the past 6 months.
Basic Requirements: Unstructured abstract 100 words, maximum 1500 word count, maximum 10 references, 03 figures and no table.
Quick communication of preliminary results (including small sample studies and case series) or scientific research that is not yet ready for presentation in full form. Such research should have the potential to stimulate communications among researchers and clinicians that may lead to new concepts and supportive work.
Basic Requirements: Unstructured abstract 150 words, maximum 800 word count, maximum 05 references, no figure and no table.
Report of a truly unique, highly relevant, and educationally valuable case; should not be combined with a review of the literature. A Case Report must follow CARE guidelines for reporting.
Basic Requirements: Unstructured abstract 150 words, maximum 800 word count, maximum 10 references, 04 figures, no table.
Letter to the Editor:
Letter regarding published material with suggestions for adding information of timely interest. If related to a previously published article, it must be submitted within 3 months of the article’s publication, and the article’s authors will be invited to reply.
Basic Requirements: No abstract, maximum 400 word count, maximum 05 references, no figure and no table.
Colour photograph (not picture of an x-ray) of a unique, relevant, and educationally valuable clinical entity with an accompanying discussion. Maximum 02 photographs can be merged as one, if essentially required.
Basic Requirements: JPEG format of picture, high resolution 300 dpi with at least 5000 x 4000 pixels, no abstract, maximum 300 word count, maximum 03 references and no table.
Innovation / Discovery:
A short report of unique or original methods for 1) surgical techniques or medical management, or 2) new devices, or 3) laboratory technique or methods, or) educational strategy used.
Basic Requirements: No abstract, maximum 250 word count, maximum 03 references, 02 figures and no table.
These are introductions to special issues written by the guest editors and are always invited by the Editor of the journal.
Basic Requirements: No abstract, maximum 250 word count, maximum 05 references, no figure and no table.
This is a brief account of an intellectual property that gives its owner the legal right to exclude others from making, using, selling, and importing an invention for a limited period of years, in exchange for publishing an enabling public disclosure of the invention. A patent must be submitted with a patent registration number for publication.
Basic Requirements: No abstract, maximum 500 word count, maximum 03 references, 02 figures and one table.
Student Corner: Any of the above mentioned submissions made by undergraduate or postgraduate student shall be published in the Section of Student Corner – All instructions remain same however the processing and publication charges shall be reduced to 50% of the original in case of submissions by undergraduate students only.
Chronicles/Short Reports/News/ Proceedings:
This is a brief account of any interesting event of intellectual, academic or scientific nature held within the quarter of release of issue of PPMJ.
Basic Requirements: No abstract, maximum 500 word count, maximum 04 figures and one table.
Preparation of Manuscript: The text of observational and experimental articles is divided into sections with the headings (IMRAD) Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion. All components of a manuscript must be submitted in a single word.doc file.
General format for all manuscripts:
Type or print out the manuscript on white bond paper, 216 x 279 mm (8.5 x 11 inches), or ISO A4 (212 x 297 mm), with margins of at least 25 mm (1 inch). Use Times New Romans font at size 12. All headings must be bold and placed on left alignment. Use double spacing throughout, including the title page, abstract, text, acknowledgments, references, individual tables, and legends. Number pages consecutively excluding the title page. Put the page number in the upper or lower right-hand corner for each page. Type or print on only one side of the paper while submitting the hard copy.
Manuscript should be submitted in two files:
TITLE PAGE FILE:
The title page shall carry:
(1) the title of the article, which should be concise but informative;
(2) a short running head or footline of no more than 40 characters (count letters and spaces) at the foot of the title page;
(3) the name by which each author is known, with his or her highest academic degree(s) and institutional affiliation;
(4) the name of the department(s) and institution(s) to which the work should be attributed;
(5) the name, address and the telephone number of the Corresponding Author responsible for communicating with the other authors about revisions and final approval of the proofs;
(6) Acknowledgement with designation and institution of ones who are acknowledged, if any
(7) financial disclosures, if any sources of support in the form of grants, equipment, drugs, or all of these;
(8) declaration of conflict of interests (details can be seen at ICMJE/);
(9) total word count excluding references and title page;
(10) Number of figures and tables;
(11) the name and address of the author to whom requests for reprints should be addressed or a statement that reprints will not be available from the authors.
Approvals: A statement detailing compliance with institutional, national, or international guidelines for experimental research on humans or animals including vertebrates or any regulated invertebrates must be included in the title page of the manuscript mentioning approval number and date of the study by the Institutional Review Board and Ethics Committee. Institutional Ethical Committee approval number is mandatory for submission of manuscripts. If a study has been granted an exemption from requiring ethics approval, this should also be detailed in the manuscript (including the reasons for the exemption). For all research involving human subjects, an Informed Written Consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants (or their parent or guardian in the case of children under 16). The Journal retains the right to reject any manuscript on the basis of unethical conduct of either human or animal studies. Further details can be seen at http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf. (ICJME; Section II, E)
Authorship: Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take responsibility for appropriate portions of the content. Authorship credit should be based only on the latest ICMJE guidelines (Section II –item A2) available online at ICMJE. Increasingly, authorship of multicenter trials is attributed to a group. All members of the group who are named as authors should fully meet the above criteria for authorship.
Acknowledgment: List all contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship, such as a person who provided only general support. Financial and material support should also be acknowledged. Groups of persons who have contributed materially to the paper but whose contributions do not justify author-ship may be listed under a heading such as “clinical investigators” or “participating investigators,” and their contribution should be described.
PPMJ follows double blind peer review policy. The authors are requested to submit a blinded file of main article with ommission of the name, city and country of the study site (centre/ hospital/ institute/ clinic/laboratory etc.) This detail is added in the point 4 of the title page for editors only. After acceptance of the manuscript, the authors shall add these details before galley proof.
The article file must have the following sections:
Abstract: The abstract may be structured or unstructured depending upon the type of the manuscript. The structured abstract should be split under following headings 1) Background and Objective(s) that states the purpose of the study or investigation (2) basic Methods (selection of study subjects or laboratory animals; observational and analytical methods), main Results (giving specific data and their statistical significance, if possible), and the principal Conclusion(s). It should emphasize at new and important aspects of the study or observations.
Keywords: Below the abstract, authors should provide, and identify as such, 4 to 6 keywords. Terms from the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) list of Index Medicus should be used.
Introduction: Provide a context or background for the study (that is, the nature of the problem and its significance). State the specific purpose or research objective of, or hypothesis tested by, the study or observation and summarize the rationale for the study or observation. Recommendation, when appropriate, may be included. Cite only directly pertinent references, and do not include data or conclusions from the work being reported (ICJME: Section IV, 3c)
Methods: Describe your selection of the observational or experimental subjects (patients or laboratory animals, including controls) clearly. Identify the age, sex, and other important characteristics of the subjects. Because the relevance of such variables as age, sex, and ethnicity to the object of research is not always clear, authors should explicitly justify them when they are included in a study report. The guiding principle should clarify how and why a study was done in a particular way. For example, authors should explain why only subjects of certain ages were included or why women were excluded. Authors should avoid terms such as “race,” which lacks precise biological meaning, and use alternative descriptors such as “ethnicity” or “ethnic group” instead. Authors should specify carefully what the descriptors mean, and describe exactly how the data were collected. Identify the methods, apparatus (give the manufacturer’s name and address in parentheses), and procedures in sufficient detail to allow other workers to reproduce the results. Give references to established methods, including statistical methods; provide references and brief descriptions for methods that have been published but are not well known; describe new or substantially modified methods, give reasons for using them, and evaluate their limitations. Identify precisely all drugs and chemicals used, including generic name(s), dose(s), and route(s) of administration. Reports of randomized clinical trials should present information on all major study elements, including the protocol, assignment of interventions and the method of masking (binding). Authors submitting review manuscripts should include a section describing the methods used for locating, selecting, extracting, and synthesizing data. These methods should also be summarized in the abstract.
Statistical Analysis: The statistical methods are an integral part of the manuscript and should be reported as a separate heading. Descriptive part and test(s) applied should be clearly mentioned. The term n (italic & lower case) should only be used to refer to a sample of the whole eligible population, while N (italic, upper case) should only be used when referring to the whole eligible population. Means should preferably be expressed as “mean (± S.D)” or “mean (± S.E.M) rather than “mean ± SD” or “mean ± SEM”. For non-parametric analysis, median ± IQR or range should be given rather than mean. Percentages should be presented to one decimal place, following the numbers that generate them. For example when describing the data authors should use a format e.g. “17 patients (31.2%)…… or “patients who were diabetic (n = 17, 31.2%) ……”.
Define statistical terms, abbreviations, and most symbols. Specify the statistical software package(s) and versions. If statistical testing across multiple groups is carried out, then an appropriate post-hoc test should be applied, e.g. the Tukey test for multiple pairwise comparisons. If complex statistical models are being employed, then justification of the model choice is required. The use of specific terminology such as ‘random’, ‘significant’, ‘association’, ‘difference’ and ‘correlation’ should be reserved for their correct statistical context. The sampling method used in a study must be stated and any justifications for using it must be made. The term p for P-values should be expressed in non-italic Upper case and should be reported to 3 decimal places, these should be expressed by stating the actual value (rather than P<0.05 etc) unless the value is less than 0.001, in which case P<0.001 should be used. When referring to non-statistically significant results, it is advisable to provide the P-value, rather than simply stating “not significant” or “NS” or “P>0.05”.
Results: Present your results in logical sequence in the text, tables, and illustrations. Do not repeat in the text all the data in the tables or illustrations; emphasize only important observations. Supplementary materials (data and/or technical details) can be placed in an appendix where they will be accessible with the article at the end or in the electronic version of the journal but will not interrupt the flow of the text. Numeric results should be given in absolute numbers (n) and the derivatives (for example, percentages) both along with the statistical value, if any. Use tables and graphs as an alternative tool for the data, not for duplication. Avoid nontechnical uses of technical terms in statistics, such as “random” (which implies a randomizing device), “normal,” “significant,” “correlations,” and “sample”. Separate reporting of data by variables in a stratified manner is advisable that avoids overlapping of the findings.
Discussion: Emphasize the new and important aspects of the study mentioning how your findings extend previous knowledge in a meaningful way? Do not repeat in detail data or other material given in the introduction or the result’s section. Include in the discussion section the implications of the findings and their limitations, including implications for future research. Relate the observations to other relevant studies. For experimental studies, it is useful to begin the discussion by briefly summarizing the main findings, then explore possible mechanisms or explanations for these findings, compare and contrast the results with other relevant studies, state the limitations of the study, and explore the implications of the findings for future research and for clinical practice. Link the conclusions with the goals of the study but avoid unqualified statements and conclusions not adequately supported by the data. In particular, distinguish between clinical and statistical significance, and avoid making statements on economic benefits and costs unless the manuscript includes the appropriate economic data and analyses. Avoid claiming priority or alluding to work that has not been completed.
Conclusion(s): Link the conclusion with the goals of the study but avoid unqualified statements and conclusions that are not completely supported by the data. While writing down the defensible conclusions the author should keep in mind the following probes; Was hypothesis proved? Does it point out the clinical significance and relevance? Does it suggest the possible direction of future investigation?
Limitations of the study:
It is always better to identify and acknowledge limitations/shortcomings of your work, rather than to leave them pointed out by the reviewers or readers. While discussing your research limitations, don’t just provide the list and description of shortcomings of your work. It is also important for you to explain how these limitations have impacted your research findings for future research and for clinical practice or policy.
References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text. Identify references in text, tables, and legends by Arabic numerals in superscript. References cited only in tables or figure legends should be numbered in accordance with the sequence established by the first identification in the text of the particular table or figure. Use the VANCOUVER style while writing the references as given below. Avoid using abstracts as references. References to papers accepted but not yet published should be designated as “in press” or “forthcoming”; authors should obtain written permission to cite such papers as well as verification that they have been accepted for publication. Information from manuscripts submitted but not accepted should be cited in the text as “unpublished observations” with written permission from the source. Avoid citing a “personal communication” unless it provides essential information not available from a public source, in which case the name of the person and date of communication should be cited in parentheses in the text. The references must be verified by the author(s) against the original documents. In general, References should follow the standards summarized in the U.S National Library of Medicine, International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals. Further details can be accessed at the NLM’s Citing Medicine, 2nd edition. DOI must be mentioned where available.
- Standard journal article. If more than six authors, list the first six authors followed by et al. Parkin D M, Clayton D, Black R J, Masuyer E, Nimsa S, Clint YJ, et al. Childhood leukemia in Europe after Chernobyl: 5 years follow-up. Br J Can. 1996; 73(2): 1006-12. https://doi.org/10.1038/bjc.1996.197.
- If less than 5 authors, list all authors names: Vega KJ, Pina I, Krevsky B. Heart transplantation is associated with an increased risk for pancreatobiliary disease. Ann Intern Med. 1996; 124 (11): 980-3. https://doi.org/10.7326/0003-4819-124-11-199606010-00005
- Organization as author: The Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand. Clinical exercise stress testing. Safety and performance guidelines. Med J Aust. 1996; 164(3): 282-4.
- No author given: Cancer in South Africa (Editorial). S Afr Med J. 1994(1); 84-5.
- Volume with supplement: Shen H M, Zhang Q. Risk assessment of nickel carcinogenicity and occupational lung cancer. Environ. Health Perspect. 1994; 102 Suppl.1: 275-82. https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.94102s1275
- Book author(s): Ringsven M K. Gerontology and leadership skills for nurses. 2nd Ed. Albany (NY): Delmar Publishers; 1996.
- Editor(s), compiler(s) as author(s): Norman I J, Redfern S J. Editors. Mental health care for elderly people. New York: Churchill Livingstone; 1996.
- Organization as author and publisher: Institute of Medicine (US). Looking at the future of the Medicaid program. Washington: The Institute; 1992.
- Conference proceedings: Kimura J, Shibasaki H. Editors. Recent advances in clinical Proceedings of the 10th International Congress of EMG and Clinical Neurophysiology; 1995; Oct. 15-9. .
- Conference paper: Bengtsson S, Solheim BG. Enforcement of data protection, privacy and security in medical informatics. In: Lun KC, Degoulet P, Piemme T E, Rienhoff O. Editors. MEDINFO 92. Proceedings of the 7th World Congress on Medical Informatics; 1992; 6-10. Geneva, Switzerland.
- Dissertation: Kaplan SJ. Post-hospital home health care: the elderly’s access and utilization (dissertation). St. Louis (MO): Washington Univ.; 1995.
- In press: (Note: NLM prefers “forthcoming” because not all items will be printed). Leshner AI. Molecular mechanisms of cocaine addiction. N Engl J Med. In Press, 1996.
- Journal article in electronic format: Morse SS. Factors in the emergence of infectious diseases. Emerg. Infect. Dis. (Serial online) 1995.Available online at: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/EID/eid.htm. (Last accessed in June, 2018)
Tables: Type or print out each table with double spacing as and where required in the manuscript file. Donot submit tables separately. Number tables consecutively in the order of their first citation in the text and supply a brief title for each. Give each column a short or abbreviated heading. Place explanatory matter in footnotes, not in the heading. Explain in footnotes all nonstandard abbreviations that are used in each table. For footnotes use the following symbols, in this sequence: *, †, ‡, §
Do not use internal horizontal and vertical rules; Be sure that each table is cited in the text. The use of too long table in relation to the length of the text may produce difficulties in the layout of pages. If you use data from another published or unpublished source, obtain permission and acknowledge that source fully. Additional tables containing backup data too extensive to publish in print may be appropriate for publication in the electronic version of the journal, deposited with an archival service, or made available to readers directly by the authors. An appropriate statement should be added to the text to inform readers that this additional information is available and where it is located.
PPMJ doesn’t accept tables as photographs (JPEG or other format) and make sure NO more than 02 tables per manuscript are submitted.
Charts: Submit the required number of charts/graphs (not more than 02) created in Word.doc file, NOT as image form. Any chart submitted as image, shall not be entertained for publication.
Illustrations/Figures/Photographs: Submit the required number of complete sets of figures/ illustrations/photographs (not more than 02) in collage/ non-collage form. Figures should be professionally drawn and photo-graphed; freehand or typewritten lettering is unacceptable. Digital images of manuscript illustrations should be submitted in JPEG format with a minimum resolution of---- for print publication. For X-ray films, scans, and other diagnostic images, as well as pictures of pathology specimens or photomicrographs, Send high-resolution photographic image files. Letters, numbers, and symbols should be clear and even throughout and of sufficient size that when reduced for publication each item will still be legible. Captions and explanations are placed in the legends for illustrations. Photomicrographs should have internal scale markers. Symbols, arrows, or letters used in photo-micrographs should contrast with the background. Figures should be numbered consecutively according to the order in which they have been first cited in the text. Figures copied from published manuscript must be cited properly. No Copyright-protected figure/image shall be accepted without copyright permission from the author.
Type legends for illustrations using single spacing with Arabic numerals corresponding to the illustrations. Avoid abbreviations in the captions, if used, give their full words in footnotes.
Units, Abbreviations and Symbols: Use only standard units of measurement, symbols and abbreviations while writing the manuscript. Standard abbreviations in medical writing can be visited at NLM –Appendix B: and https://www.abbreviations.com/
Publication Charges: PPMJ – The official Journal of Postgraduate Medical Institute, Lahore provides a free Open Access opportunity to all readers. All the manuscripts published in PPMJ are available as free full texts online.
Sending the Manuscript to the Journal: The articles should be submitted as electronic copies through Online Journal System (OJS). Authors have to register and login through a user-friendly software available on our website.
Feedback: Authors and other segments of the people related to the Journal are encouraged to send their feedback to improve the quality of publication and facilitation of the authors and peer reviewers.
Quality Assurance: The meetings of the Editorial Board are held bimonthly to maintain the quality of the Journal during different phases of its publication.