Guide for Authors
Only those manuscripts which are original, have not been published elsewhere, and are not currently being considered for inclusion in another publication will be considered for publication in Fertility and Sterility®. Authors are advised to keep a copy of all manuscripts submitted. All manuscripts (meaning all submission items, including all text, tables, artwork, cover letters, conflict of interest disclosures, and any other required materials) must be submitted to the Fertility and Sterility® Editorial Office through the Elsevier Editorial System (EES) website for this journal. Do not mail, email, or fax your manuscripts to the editorial office. In an accompanying cover letter, authors should state that the material contained in the manuscript has not been published, has not been submitted, or is not being submitted elsewhere for publication. Each author's role in the manuscript should be detailed, and any other persons who contributed to the manuscript (providing writing assistance, for example) should be disclosed. In the cover letter, please note manuscripts that have been published, submitted, or are in press that are similar to the submission to Fertility and Sterility® and include in your submission copies of these so that the editors can be assured that there is no overlap.
All manuscripts will be evaluated by peer reviewers who will remain anonymous. These peer reviews may or may not be the reviewers suggested by the author, and selection of the peer reviewers is at the sole discretion of the Fertility and Sterility® editors. The editors and reviewers do not disclose any information about a manuscript or its review. If revisions are required, authors are asked to return the revised manuscripts within 60 days. Please notify the editorial office if additional time is needed or if you choose not to submit a revision. Authors are strongly encouraged to limit article length to 3,500 words for effective and efficient communication. If substantial merit would be gained from increasing the number of words in an article, longer submissions may be considered for publication. Article length does not include the running title, title page, capsule, abstract, or references.
If you wish, you may include expanded discussion of the materials and methods section, or additional figures or tables, as supplemental material. This supplemental material will be published in the online version only, and will be referenced in the print version. Please indicate in your cover letter which sections are intended to be supplemental material. Title any supplemental figures or tables as “Supplemental figure 1,” and so on.
Submission items include a cover letter, manuscript (including the running title, title page, capsule, structured abstract, manuscript text, references, and table/figure legends), tables, figures, and conflict of interest disclosure forms and any applicable checklists (see the “Standards for Reporting of Research” section). The cover letter should identify the person (with the address, telephone number, fax number, and e-mail) responsible for correspondence concerning the manuscript. Revised manuscripts should also be accompanied by a unique “Revision Notes” file separate from the covering letter, with responses to reviewers' comments. The preferred order of files is as follows: cover letter, revision notes (revised manuscript only), checklist, manuscript file(s) with table(s) included, figure(s), and disclosure forms. Files should be labeled with appropriate and descriptive file names (e.g., SmithText.doc, Fig1.eps). Upload each figure as individual files separate from the manuscript. Do not import figures into the text document. Your manuscript should be in Word (doc) format. Tables should be in Word (doc) format. Figures may be in tiff, eps, ppt, or doc format; photographic images are best presented in tiff or eps format, while graphs and illustrations may be clearest in doc, ppt, or pdf format. Do not submit your manuscript as a pdf file. Disclosure forms may be submitted in any format. Complete instructions for electronic artwork submission can be found here.All correspondence regarding submitted manuscripts will be handled via e-mail through EES. Send all other correspondence to:
Craig Niederberger, M.D., and Antonio Pellicer, M.D.
Co-Editors-in-Chief, Fertility and Sterility®
American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM)
1209 Montgomery Highway
Birmingham, AL 35216
P: 205-978-5000 x139
Prior to publication, the author(s) must sign and return the “Assignment of Copyright and Financial Subsidy Disclosure Form.” This form will be supplied by the publisher. The manuscript, when published, will become the property of the journal and the copyright interest in the manuscript will be registered in the name of the publisher, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. No responsibility is assumed by the Editor, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, or the Publisher for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a matter of products liability, negligence or otherwise, or from any use or operation of any methods, products, instructions, or ideas contained in the material herein. Statements and opinions expressed in articles and communications herein are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the editors, publisher, or the American Society for Reproductive Medicine or any organizations endorsing this journal.PREPARATION OF MANUSCRIPTS
Fertility and Sterility® follows the “Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals.” Manuscripts must be typed double-spaced with margins of at least 25 mm (1 in).
Manuscripts will not be acceptable for publication unless they meet the following editorial requirements. Each of the following manuscript components should begin on a new page in the following sequence.
- Page 1, Running Title: a maximum of 40 spaces and letters.
- Page 2, Title Page: provide the full title, full name, highest awarded academic degree, and institutional affiliation of each author. All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship. The order of authorship should be a joint decision of the coauthors. Fertility and Sterility discourages footnotes indicating authors "contributed equally." The position of this journal is that anyone meeting the criteria for authorship has contributed equally, albeit perhaps in different capacities. An acceptable alternative footnote would be to indicate that authors should be considered "similar in author order." Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for the content. In general, no more than 8 authors is considered appropriate; if more are necessary, explain why in your cover letter. Indicate a corresponding author for reprints, and give full contact information. Also include statements listing each author's financial disclosures and acknowledging any financial support (grant number, institution, and location);
- Page 3, Capsule: a 30-word summary of the abstract, which will be published in the Table of Contents. The final conclusions should be described;
- Page 4, Structured Abstract and Key Words: The abstract should generally include the following headings: Objective, Design, Setting, Patients (or Animals, etc.), Interventions, Main Outcome Measure(s), Results, and Conclusions. The abstract should also emphasize new and important aspects of the study or observation and may not exceed 200 words. Provide the clinical trial registration number, if applicable, at the end of your abstract. Below the abstract provide 3 to 5 key words or short phrases that will assist indexers in cross-indexing the article.
Begin your manuscript on Page 5: Authors are strongly encouraged to limit article length to 3,500 words for effective and efficient communication. If substantial merit would be gained from increasing the number of words in an article, longer submissions may be considered for publication. Article length does not include the running title, title page, capsule, abstract, or references. A maximum of 4 total tables and figures is allowed. The following components should be identified: Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgments, References, Figure Legends, Tables, Supplemental Materials, Supplemental Figure Legends, and Supplemental Tables. Begin references on a new page.Units of Measurement. Measurements of length, height, weight, and volume should be reported in metric units (meter, kilogram, or liter) or their decimal multiples. Temperatures should be given in degrees Celsius. All hematologic and clinical-chemistry measurements should be reported in the metric system in conventional units. If values are represented in SI units, the conversion factor must be included.
Statistical Validation. When describing statistical analyses that have been performed, tests that were used to evaluate a specific data set must be clearly indicated. When data are presented in tables, indicate the statistical test(s) that was used to evaluate the data with a footnote. When possible, quantify findings and present them with appropriate indicators of measurement error or uncertainty (such as confidence intervals). Define statistical terms, abbreviations, and most symbols.Abbreviations and Symbols. Use only standard abbreviations. Define all abbreviations on first usage.
Acknowledgments. Persons who have contributed intellectually to the paper but whose contributions do not justify authorship may be named and their function or contribution described, e.g. “scientific adviser,” “data collections,” or “participation in clinical trial.” Such persons must have given their permission to be named. Authors are responsible for obtaining written permission from the persons acknowledged by name, because readers may infer their endorsement of the data and conclusions.References. Number references consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text. References appearing for the first time in tables and figures must be numbered in sequence with those cited in the text where the table or figure is mentioned. References are identified by Arabic numerals in parentheses.
Unpublished observations and personal communications may not be used as references, although references to written, not oral, communications may be inserted (in parentheses) in the text. Abstracts published in a citable journal may be cited. To cite a paper accepted but not yet published, state “In Press” in place of the volume information, and include the paper's DOI number. Information from manuscripts submitted but not yet accepted should be cited in the text as “unpublished observations” (in parentheses). If author's(s') own papers are quoted as “In press” in the reference list, the cited paper should be included with the submission. References must be verified by the author(s) against the original documents. The titles of journals should be abbreviated according to the style used in Index Medicus. List all authors in an article, but if the number exceeds 6, give 6 followed by et al.Examples of References
- Journal Article
- Flisser E, Scott RT, Copperman AT. Patient-friendly IVF: how should it be defined?. Fertil Steril 2007;88:547-9.
- Colson JH, Armour WJ. Sports injuries and their treatment. 2nd rev. ed. London: S. Paul, 1986.
- Diener HC, Wilkinson M, eds. Drug-induced headache. New York: Springer-Verlag, 1988.
- Weinstein L, Swartz MN. Pathologic properties of invading microorganisms. In: Sodeman WA Jr, Sodeman WA, eds. Pathologic physiology: mechanisms of disease. Vol. 1. Philadelphia: WB Saunders, 1974:457-72.
- Stein A. [letter]. Fertil Steril 2007;88:756.
- Lillywhite HB, Donald JA. Pulmonary blood flow regulation in an aquatic snake. Fertil Steril, In Press, DOI:
- American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Headlines in reproductive medicine. Available at: http://www.asrm.org/headlines/. Accessed May 6, 2010.
Tables. Should be typed double-spaced, and they should be titled and numbered in Arabic numerals (not Roman numerals) in the order of their first citation in the text. Do not submit tables as photographs or pdf files. Give each column a short heading. Place explanatory matter in footnotes, not in the heading. For footnotes use the following symbols, in this sequence: a, b, c, d, e, f. Do not use internal horizontal and vertical rules.Illustrations. Figures should be professionally drawn and photographed; freehand or typewritten lettering is unacceptable. Each figure should be submitted in a separate tiff, eps, ppt, or doc file, at a resolution of 300 dpi for photos and 1200 dpi for line art. Lettering and identifying marks should be clear, and type size should be consistent on each figure. Capital letters should be used for specific areas of identification in a figure. Symbols, lettering, and numbering should be distinctly recognizable so that when the figure is reduced for publication each item will still be legible. Titles and detailed explanations belong in the legends for illustrations, not on the illustrations themselves. Slides are not acceptable. Please submit illustrations in color. There is no charge for color illustrations. There is a maximum of one illustration and/or table for every 600 words (approximately 3 typewritten pages). Additional tables or figures may be submitted as supplemental material, and will be published in the online version only.
Legends. Do not include figure legends in the same file as the figure; place them instead on a page at the end of your manuscript.Permissions. Materials taken from other sources must be accompanied by a written statement from the copyright holder giving permission to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine for reproduction in Fertility and Sterility®.
Video Clips/Animation. For information about including media files, such as video clips or animations, please refer to the following: http://www.elsevier.com/framework_authors/Artwork/Artwork.pdf.Tracking Your Manuscript. Authors can track the progress of a manuscript on the journal's website by logging into their accounts with their user name and password.
Online Publication. Articles that are accepted for publication are listed ahead of print in the “Articles In Press” section of the journal's website (www.fertstert.org).Errata. Errata are published in the journal, but if an erratum represents the author's failure to pick up a mistake on the galley proofs, this will be noted in the erratum. A corrigendum may also be published, in which the error and correction will be published together.
PERMISSION REQUESTSPUBMED CENTRAL POLICY
Permission requests are handled by Elsevier Inc., Philadelphia. Instructions for submitting requests can be found here. Questions should be directed to the permissions editor at: email@example.com.
Manuscripts submitted that acknowledge NIH grant support will automatically be submitted to Pubmed Central and available to all in an open access format beginning 1 year from the date of publication in a print issue.
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARD/INSTITUTIONAL ANIMAL CARE AND USE COMMITTEE (IACUC) APPROVALCLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION
A written statement must be attached with the original correspondence indicating whether or not Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval was obtained or equivalent guidelines followed in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975 on human experimentation; if not, an explanation must be provided. In addition, a statement of IRB status (approved, waived, or other) must be included in the Materials and Methods section of your manuscript. Similarly, a written statement confirming approval by appropriate IACUC must be included for research involving animals. Any manuscript submitted without appropriate IRB or IACUC approval will not be reviewed and will be returned to the authors.
All clinical trials submitted for publication must show proof of clinical trial registration in keeping with policies adopted by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). Studies that prospectively assign human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes must be registered before patient enrollment. “Health-related interventions” include any intervention used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome (for example drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioral treatments, dietary interventions, and process-of-care changes) and also include any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events.
In addition, the FDA now requires by law that all clinical trials of drugs, biologics, and devices, whether investigational or already approved, must be registered. For more information and to register a trial, see http://www.icmje.org/faq_clinical.html.Include your clinical trial registration number at the end of your manuscript. Clinical trials that are not registered according to ICMJE guidelines and in an approved database will be returned to the authors.
Please acknowledge if a submission is a secondary analysis of a clinical trial and reference the primary publication(s) in your manuscript.
Reports of Randomized Trials
Studies of Diagnostic Accuracy
Observational Studies (cohort, case-control, or cross-sectional designs)
Meta-Analysis and Systematic Reviews
STANDARDS FOR REPORTING OF RESEARCH
Incomplete or inadequate reporting of research complicates the identification of the strengths and weaknesses of the studies reported in the medical literature. To solve this problem, several sets of guidelines have been developed in order to guarantee that the required information is available in a manuscript, to improve the accuracy and completeness of reporting of studies, and to allow readers to assess the potential for bias in the study (internal validity) and to evaluate its applicability to other environments (external validity). Authors should consult the widely accepted checklists below for each study type. Submissions for these article types must include a copy of the appropriate checklist with an indication that each item has been addressed, or a brief statement that the guidelines have been followed in the preparation of the manuscript. Their application will increase the chances of acceptance by ensuring that important information will not be missed, producing a homogeneous and structured medical report, permitting fair and objective refereeing, and simplifying future corrections and revisions.
Primary Registries in the WHO Registry Network:
ICMJE Accepted Registries:
CONFLICT OF INTEREST Fertility and Sterility® now uses the ICMJE Uniform Disclosure Form for Potential Conflicts of Interest. Each author must complete and sign the form, which can be found at http://www.icmje.org. Please include these forms with your original submission. All authors must disclose any commercial interest, financial interest, and/or other relationship with manufacturers of pharmaceuticals, laboratory supplies, and/or medical devices and with commercial providers of medically related services. All relationships must be disclosed. All non-FDA-approved uses of products must be clearly identified.
Commercial interest is defined as any proprietary entity producing, marketing, re-selling, distributing, or otherwise participating in or profiting from the distribution, promotion, or sale of health care goods or services consumed by, or used on, patients.Financial interests/relationships are those in which the individual benefits by receiving a salary, royalty, intellectual property rights, consulting fee, honoraria, ownership interest (e.g., stocks, stock options, or other ownership interest, excluding diversified mutual funds), or other financial benefit. Financial benefits usually are associated with roles such as employment, management position, independent contractor (including contracted research), consulting, speaking and teaching, membership on advisory committees or review panels, board membership, and other activities from which remuneration is received or expected. This includes any financial relationships within the last 12 months, as well as known financial relationships of your spouse or partner.
Include all disclosures on the title page of your manuscript, as well.
ETHICS IN PUBLISHINGEach author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for its content.
Conditions of Authorship. Authors should have made significant conceptual, intellectual, experimental, and analytical contributions to the research, as well as having participated in writing and revising the manuscript.
Honorary authorship (i.e., not adhering to the conditions of authorship and nonetheless being granted authorship) is not permitted.
Responsibilities of Authors. Authors must describe the research in sufficient detail such that others could repeat it. Written, informed consent under protocols approved by an institutional or local review board or approved animal protocols is essential if the research involves human or animal subjects, respectively. This information should be stated in the manuscript and the protocol number or exempt status of approved protocols should be stated in the manuscript at the time of submission for review.Authors of clinical trials are required to register their trial with one of the ICMJE-recognized trial registries.
Selective reporting of data is inappropriate, especially if unreported data are in disagreement with the findings of the selectively reported data. In accordance with the ICMJE, the ASRM supports publication of negative studies.Authors should cite publications in the literature that are relevant to the uniqueness of the research and should include publications by others as well as of their own research group.
Previous publication of a preliminary report on the data is permissible if this is stated clearly in a footnote in the manuscript. Scientific Misconduct Definition: The DHHS Office of Research Integrity defines plagiarism, fabrication, and falsification. The ASRM accepts these definitions and considers them to constitute scientific misconduct. Additional unethical behavior that comprises scientific misconduct includes: submission of results from animal or clinical research that was conducted without appropriate approval and written, informed consent; duplicate publication; and honorary authorship. Research misconduct occurs when results are falsified, fabricated, or plagiarized. The actions are willful or intentional in research misconduct, although the actual definition of misconduct varies somewhat by country. This can occur at various times during the process of proposing, performing, or reviewing research.
- Fabrication: Data, results, or recording or reporting information that does not exist.
- Falsification: Changing research materials, equipment, or processes; omission of data or results. As a consequence, the research is not accurately represented in the research records.
- Plagiarism: Using another person's words, ideas, results, and processes without giving credit to them constitutes plagiarism. Self-plagiarism can include multiple publications of essentially the same manuscript or data in different journals, books, or other publications (see “Duplicate Publication”).
Submission without Animal or Human Subjects' Oversight Approvals. Any manuscript submitted without proof of animal or human subjects approval by institutional or local IRBs will not be reviewed and will be returned to the authors.Duplicate Publication. Copies of related or possibly duplicative materials (i.e., those containing substantially similar content or using the same or similar data) that have been previously published or are under consideration elsewhere must be provided at the time of manuscript submission.
Duplicate publication. Duplicate publication can take several forms:
Simultaneous Publication with Other Journals. On occasion ASRM journals may decide to publish an article simultaneously with another journal, e.g., with consensus statements from consensus conferences. Such intention on the part of the Editor-in-Chief should be discussed with the Publications Committee immediately after the two journals have had a discussion so that Publications Committee members can assess the appropriateness of such joint publications and approve or disapprove.Publication of Identical Data. The ASRM considers that disclosure, citing the original publication, and obtaining permission are essential. Without all of these, publication of identical data is inappropriate and not permissible.
“Salami” Publications. Dividing data, analysis, and presentation into “minimally publishable units” is a slippery slope, and can be used to extend one data set over several manuscripts. While this may be acceptable for clarity of presentation and focus on specific outcomes in different manuscripts, a motivation may also be to increase the publication list in an author's CV.The latter is unethical and unacceptable. Therefore, please acknowledge in your cover letter similar publications or submitted manuscripts.
Investigation of Scientific Misconduct. All cases of suspected misconduct will be investigated initially by the Co-Editors-in-Chief and the Publications Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine to determine if the evidence of misconduct is sufficient to proceed with a formal inquiry. If so, the author will be notified of the allegations in writing and will be asked to provide information useful to the investigation, which may include but not be limited to access to all original data, notes, and copies of prior publications. The author's institution may be contacted as well. Processing and publication of the manuscript will be delayed while the matter is under consideration and resolved. Confidentiality will be maintained and care taken to protect the rights and reputations of all concerned. The final decision on disposition of the paper and any sanctions against the author will be made by the Co-Editors-in-Chief in concert with the Publications Committee.Potential sanctions include, but may not be limited to: rejection of a manuscript in process; a letter of reprimand to the author with copy to the authors’ institution(s); correction or retraction of the manuscript, including a statement in the print journal detailing the nature of the misconduct; and a ban on publication in the journal for 2 or more years.
Reviewers. Reviewers have the responsibility to objectively and fairly review the manuscript. If there is a conflict of interest or if the reviewer does not have the requisite expertise, then the manuscript should be immediately returned to the Editor for reassignment. Strict confidentiality is required during the review process. Written consent of the corresponding author is required if any portion of a manuscript is shared outside of the standard editorial process before the review is completed and accepted for publication.POLICY ON ADVERTISING
Offprints may be ordered from Elsevier Inc.
Advertisements are solicited and placed by the publisher without knowledge of the contents or order of the articles in the issue. The editors do not discuss journal content with the advertising staff or companies involved in purchasing advertising space. The Co-Editors-in-Chief reserve the right to reject any advertisements deemed inappropriate. However, the acceptance of advertisements does not imply endorsement or approval of the products or services by the journal or by the societies they represent.
REQUIREMENTS FOR SPECIFIC ARTICLE TYPESThe Editor reserves the right to shorten letters, delete objectionable comments, and make other changes to comply with the style of the journal. Letters may be submitted online through EES.
Letters to the Editors
This section of the journal is set aside for critical comments directed to a specific article that has been published in the journal in the last 3 months. Letters should be brief (500 words), double-spaced, and limited to a maximum of 5 citations and 2 to 3 authors. The letters and replies should be prepared according to journal format. These will only be published in the online version of the journal for 6 months and then stored in the archives, which are accessible to readers online. Illustrative material is accepted only with permission of the Editor. Please include your complete mailing address, telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail address with your correspondence.
Editorials are considered by invitation only. Proposals for editorials should be sent to the editorial office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reviews are generally by invitation only, but proposals will be considered. Authors should send a brief outline to the editorial office at email@example.com. Submission of meta-analyses is encouraged. Authors are strongly encouraged to limit article length to 3,500 words for effective and efficient communication. If substantial merit would be gained from increasing the number of words in an article, longer submissions may be considered for publication. Article length does not include the running title, title page, capsule, abstract, or references. A maximum of 4 total tables and figures is allowed.
Video ArticlesMonographs, Supplements, and Compilations
Original video articles are peer-reviewed and, if accepted, are indexed and citable. Authors should submit a cover letter, a structured abstract, reference list (submit the abstract and references as the “Manuscript”), and the video itself through the Elsevier Editorial System (EES) website for this journal. Specifics regarding preparation of a video article can be found here.
Supplements are paginated like a regular journal issue and consist of peer-reviewed original research. The cover is clearly identified with the volume and number, and the articles can be cited. Monographs are not peer reviewed, are not identified as part of the regular journal, are not paginated, and cannot be cited. Compilations are previously published journal articles with an index indicating where each article was published. All requests for publication of monographs, supplements, or compilations should be referred to the Publications Committee.
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