Browse journals > Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery > Guide for authors
Guide for Authors
Please note: failure to follow our detailed instructions to authors may influence the decision to accept or reject the manuscript and will adversely affect time to publication.
The Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery is the official journal of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS). Its objective is to publish original articles about developments in all areas related to plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic surgery and to provide a forum for correspondence and discussion. Significant papers on any aspect of plastic surgery are invited for publication. These include operative procedures with an emphasis on outcome, technical innovations, clinical or laboratory research, case reports, letters to the Editor and review articles.
Original contributions are welcomed from any country, but the prose used in manuscripts must conform to acceptable English usage. The text must be clear, logical and concise. In assessing a manuscript for publication the Editor will also consider its originality, educational value and validity. Recommendations regarding major rearrangements or corrections may be offered to help authors re-write their submission in a way that is acceptable to the journal. The Editor reserves the right to make editorial and literary changes and accepted articles may be subject to further copy-editing to conform to journal style.
The journal uses a single-blind review process. As reviewers assist in their own time, without remuneration, authors can greatly assist the process by submitting correctly formatted papers in accordance with the following guidelines.Language editing services
Authors who require information about language editing and copyediting services pre- and post-submission please visit http://www.elsevier.com/languagepolishing for more information. Use of an English-language editing service is not mandatory, and will not guarantee acceptance or preference for publication. Elsevier neither endorses nor takes responsibility for any products, goods or services offered by outside vendors through our services or in any advertising. For more information, please refer to our Terms & Conditions: http://www.elsevier.com/termsandconditions.
All material should be submitted through the online submission and review system (http://ees.elsevier.com/jpras). All text, including references, figure legends and tables should be prepared in a single file. Illustrations should be supplied as separate files.
All authors should have made substantial contributions to all of the following:
(1) the conception and design of the study, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data
(2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content
(3) final approval of the version to be submitted.
All submissions should be accompanied by a cover letter, signed by all authors, detailing the role of each author (for further details, see paragraph 'Covering letter' below).Acknowledgements
All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship as defined above should be listed in an acknowledgements section. Examples of those who might be acknowledged include a person who provided purely technical help, writing assistance, or a department chair who provided only general support. Authors should disclose whether they had any writing assistance and identify the entity that paid for this assistance.
Conflict of interestReviewers
At the end of the text, under a subheading 'Conflict of interest statement', all authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organisations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. If the authors have no conflicts of interest, they should state 'none'.
Reviewers must disclose to the Editor any conflicts of interest that could bias their opinions of the manuscript, and they should disqualify themselves from reviewing specific manuscripts if they believe it to be appropriate. Reviewers must state explicitly whether conflicts do or do not exist. Reviewers must not use knowledge of the work, before its publication, to further their own interests.
Role of the funding sourceOpen access
All sources of funding should be declared as an acknowledgement at the end of the text. Authors should declare the role of study sponsors, if any, in the study design, in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the manuscript; and in the decision to submit the manuscript for publication. If the study sponsors had no such involvement, the authors should so state.
This journal offers you the option of making your article freely available to all via the ScienceDirect platform. To prevent any conflict of interest, you can only make this choice after receiving notification that your article has been accepted for publication. The fee of $3,000 excludes taxes and other potential author fees such as color charges. In some cases, institutions and funding bodies have entered into agreement with Elsevier to meet these fees on behalf of their authors. Details of these agreements are available at http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies. Authors of accepted articles, who wish to take advantage of this option, should complete and submit the order form (available at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/openaccessform.pdf). Whatever access option you choose, you retain many rights as an author, including the right to post a revised personal version of your article on your own website. More information can be found here: http://www.elsevier.com/authorsrights.
Randomised controlled trialsEthics
Any randomised controlled trials submitted for publication in the Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery should include a completed Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) flow chart. Please refer to the CONSORT statement website at http://www.consort-statement.org for more information. The Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery has adopted the proposal from the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE; see http://www.icmje.org) which require, as a condition of consideration for publication of clinical trials, registration in a public trials registry. Trials must register at or before the onset of patient enrolment. The clinical trial registration number (ISRCTN) should be included at the end of the article summary. For this purpose, a clinical trial is defined as any research project that prospectively assigns human subjects to intervention or comparison groups to study the cause-and-effect relationship between a medical intervention and a health outcome. Studies designed for other purposes, such as to study pharmacokinetics or major toxicity (e.g. phase I trials) would be exempt. Further information can be found at http://www.icmje.org.
The results of human and/or animal studies will only be accepted for publication in the Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery if it is made clear that investigations were carried out to a high ethical standard. Formal and documented ethical approval from an appropriately constituted research ethics committee should be obtained for all studies involving people, medical records, and anonymised human tissues. All such studies should conform to the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki (June 1964) and subsequent amendments (http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/b3/index.html) and manuscripts should include a statement that the research protocol was approved by the local Ethical Committee or equivalent.
Animal experiments require full compliance with local, national, ethical, and regulatory principles, and local licensing arrangements and the journal will not accept papers for publication if doubts exist over the standards of care and humanity shown to experimental animals. For this reason a clear statement of the care principles used should be included in the text.Guidelines on publication ethics adhered to by this journal can be found on the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) website at http://www.publicationethics.org.
Covering letterPreparation of manuscripts
Manuscripts must be accompanied by a covering letter stating that the current "Guide for Authors" has been read, thereby indicating compliance with those instructions and acceptance of the conditions posed. The letter should state that the authors have seen and agreed to the submitted version of the paper, and bear responsibility for it; that all who have been acknowledged as contributors or as providers of personal communications have agreed to their inclusion; that the material is original; and that it has been neither published elsewhere nor submitted for publication simultaneously. In addition the letter should state that if accepted, the paper will not be published elsewhere in the same or similar form, in English or in any other language, without written consent of the copyright holder.
Failure to submit papers in accordance with these instructions will result in the return of the manuscript for correction before it is sent out for review. All copy must be typed double spaced, including text, bibliographies, figure legends and tables. Use a standard, easy-to-read wordprocessor font such as Times New Roman or Arial. All pages should be numbered in the bottom right corner or bottom centre. Papers should be set out as follows: title page, summary, keywords, text, acknowledgements, references, figure legends, tables.
Main article typesOther article types
• Original research articles should generally be no more than 3000 words in length, with 40 references and 16 figures/illustrated images/ tables. Please note that composite figures count as individual items.
• Review papers should be no more than 4000 words, with 80 references and 16 figures/illustrated imaged/tables. Please note that composite figures count as individual items.
•Please note, short reports are no longer accepted as an article type
•Case reports should be presented as briefly as possible. Succinct articles are more likely to be accepted for publication. Case reports should be no more than 1200 words, with a maximum of 10 references and four tables/figures.
•Communications and correspondence: letters for publication should be no more than 800 words in length, with five references and two tables/figures. If the letter is in response to a published article, then the article should be included in the reference list.
Online-only publicationTitle page
Due to the large volume of submissions to the journal, extended datasets, appendices (see 'Supplementary data' below), selected case reports and items of correspondence may be considered for online-only publication at the Editor's discretion. Authors will be informed if their submission is selected to appear online only.
The title page should give the following: (1) title of the article
(2) initials and name of each author
(3) name and address of the department or institution to which the work should be attributed
(4) the name, address, telephone, fax and e-mail details of the author responsible for editorial correspondence
(5) details of any meeting at which the work was presented, wholly or in part.
Summary and keywordsText
The article summary should consist of no more than 300 words. The journal does not demand structured abstracts, but the summary should briefly describe the background and purposes of the study, the subjects studied and the methods used, the main findings (including specific data and statistical analysis) and the conclusions. Please bear in mind that the summary will be visible through all the major abstracting services (such as MEDLINE and Scopus) and should therefore be an accurate and concise outline of the paper. Four to six keywords should be provided at the end of the summary.
Headings should be appropriate to the nature of the paper. Research papers should usually be split into sections under the headings: Introduction, Materials/Patients and Methods, Results and Discussion. Other headings may be appropriate depending on the nature of the paper; the proper use of headings enhances clarity and readability. Normally only two categories of heading should be used, which should be clearly distinguished.
Drug/device names: Use generic names of drugs, suture materials and instruments whenever possible. Give the trade name in brackets after the generic or approved name, followed by manufacturer, city, state (if US), and country. Proprietary names should be capitalised.Abbreviations should be avoided in the title and summary. Explain abbreviations when they first occur in the text.
Numbers: use SI units throughout. Spell out the numbers one to ten except when used for units of measurement (mass, time, length); for numbers over ten use numerals except when starting a sentence. Do not give percentages if the total number in the sample is less than 50. Percentages greater than ten should be rounded to the nearest whole number. Numerical data should be analysed by appropriate statistical methods. When evaluating a manuscript, the Editor and statistical referees will consider the design of the study, the presentation of the data, the analysis of the data and the interpretation of the results. The use of standard deviation and standard error should be clearly distinguished. The statistical test(s) used should be stated clearly in the 'Methods' section of the paper. Statistical significance should not be confused with clinical significance. In particular, 'negative' findings should be interpreted through the use of confidence intervals. Authors should beware of placing undue emphasis on secondary analyses, especially when they are suggested by an inspection of the data.Tables
These should be double-spaced, and contain only horizontal rules. Format tables with tabs rather than spaces, or prepare them as tables in Microsoft Word. Do not submit tables as photographs. A short descriptive title should appear above each table and any footnotes, suitably identified, below. Care must be taken to ensure that all units are included. Ensure that each table is cited in the text.
FiguresPatient confidentiality: where illustrations include individuals of whatever age who are recognizable or whose identity may be deduced from the context, written consent must be obtained for publication. All identifying features not considered relevant to the text should be obscured.
Figures should be submitted online as separate files. The minimum resolution for high quality reproduction is 300 dpi. For detailed instructions on the preparation of electronic artwork, consult the Artwork Instructions to Authors: http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions. Permission to reproduce illustrations from other sources should always be obtained before submission, and details included with the legend.The journal is published in full colour (in print and online) at no charge to authors, so colour photographs should be submitted wherever possible. Photographs must be in sharp focus with good contrast and should not be altered or retouched in any way. 'Before' and 'after' photographs of patients should be standardised in terms of size, position and lighting. Provide scale bars on photomicrographs rather than stating the magnification in the legend. Legends are required for figures and should be included as part of the manuscript. All figures should be numbered in a single sequence.
Supplementary data (including multimedia and video)References
The journal accepts electronic supplementary material to support and enhance your scientific research. Supplementary files allow the author to submit supporting applications, movies, animation sequences, high-resolution images, background datasets, sound clips and more, which will be published online alongside the electronic version of your article. In order to ensure that your submitted material is directly usable, please ensure that data is provided in one of the recommended file formats (for detailed guidance on formats for supplementary files go to http://www.elsevier.com/fileformats).
Please ensure that you include all relevant references to previous articles in the Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery. The accuracy of references is the responsibility of the authors. Limit citations to those that are essential to the study. It is not necessary or appropriate to quote each and every historical reference unless there is a specific point to be made. References derived from computer literature searches should not be cited unless they have been read and contribute specifically to the discussion.
References should be cited in the text in numerical order, not alphabetically, and be indicated in the text by superscript numbers, e.g. 1,2 or 1-4. The reference list should be typed double-spaced and in numerical order. If there are more than six authors list only the first three followed by 'et al.' Journal titles should be abbreviated according to Index Medicus (see http://www.nlm.nih.gov/tsd/serials/lji.html). Internet resources should have their accessibility verified and all URLs should be checked again at proof stage.Examples
Journal article: Frame JD, Frame JE. Modifying integra as a regeneration template in deep tissue planes. J Plast Reconstruct Aesthet Surg 2006;59;460-4.Book chapter: Lister GD. Skin flaps. In Green DP, ed. Operative Hand Surgery. 3rd ed. New York: Churchill Livingstone, 1993: 1741-1823.
Book: Mathes SJ, Nahai F. Reconstructive Surgery: principles, anatomy, and technique. New York: Churchill Livingstone, 1997.Internet resource: International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals. http://www.icmje.org. [Accessibility verified March 21, 2008]
CopyrightContributions will become the property of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons and the copyright on each paper published must be assigned to the Association by all of the authors (see below).
Contributions are accepted on the understanding that they have not been submitted simultaneously to another Journal and have not been published elsewhere. Dual publication or redundant publication is unethical. Redundant publication occurs when two or more papers, without full cross reference, share the same hypothesis, data, discussion points, or conclusions. For more details please refer to the COPE guidelines on http://www.publicationethics.org.
Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to sign a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (for more information on this and copyright see http://www.elsevier.com/copyright). Acceptance of the agreement will ensure the widest possible dissemination of information. An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement. Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions).If excerpts from other copyrighted works (e.g. illustrations and tables) are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has preprinted forms for use by authors in these cases: please see http://www.elsevier.com/permissions. Borrowed material should be acknowledged in the legends in this style: 'Reproduced with the permission of ... (publishers/journal) from (reference)'.
Funding body agreements and policiesProofs
Elsevier has established agreements and developed policies to allow authors who publish in Elsevier journals to comply with potential manuscript archiving requirements as specified as conditions of their grant awards. To learn more about existing agreements and policies please visit http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies.
One set of page proofs in PDF format will be sent by e-mail to the corresponding author, which they are requested to correct and return within 48 hours. Elsevier now sends PDF proofs which can be annotated; for this you will need to download Adobe Reader version 7 available free from Adobe. Instructions on how to annotate PDF files will accompany the proofs. The exact system requirements are given at the Adobe site.
If you do not wish to use the PDF annotations function, you may list the corrections (including replies to the Query Form) in an e-mail. Please list your corrections quoting line number. If, for any reason, this is not possible, then mark the corrections and any other comments (including replies to the Query Form) on a printout of your proof and return by fax, or scan the pages and e-mail, or by post.Please use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. Therefore, it is important to ensure that all of your corrections are sent back to us in one communication: please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility. Note that Elsevier may proceed with the publication of your article if no response is received. Offprints
The corresponding author, at no cost, will be provided with a PDF file of the article via e-mail or, alternatively, 25 free paper offprints. The PDF file is a watermarked version of the published article and includes a cover sheet with the journal cover image and a disclaimer outlining the terms and conditions of use. Additional paper offprints can be ordered by the authors. An order form with prices will be sent to the corresponding author.