The Hong Kong Physiotherapy Journal (HKPJ) is the official peer-reviewed journal of the Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association Limited that contributes to and documents the advancement of the principles and practice of physiotherapy. It is published twice a year, in June and December, by Elsevier.
Authors are welcome to submit research papers, treatment reports, technical notes, review papers and correspondence for consideration.
The Editorial Board requires authors to be in compliance with the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals which are compiled by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), and which are available at http://www.icmje.org.
These Instructions to Authors are revised periodically by the Editors as needed. Authors should visit the journal's homepage for the latest version of these instructions. Authors are requested to ensure that submissions adhere exactly to the stated instructions and format. Recent issues of the journal should be consulted for specific examples. Any manuscript not prepared according to these instructions will be returned immediately to the author(s) without review.
Types of article
The categories of articles that are published in the journal are listed and described below. Please select the category that best describes your paper. If your paper does not fall into any of these categories, please contact the Editorial Office.
These are usually written by the Editor-in-Chief, editorial board members or invited authors and are comments on recent news or articles published in the journal.
• Word limit: 1000 words (excluding references)
• References: 10 or less
• Tables/Figures: none
These should be critical appraisals of the literature on a specific topic which may further the viewpoint or theoretical approach to that topic. They should cover aspects of the topic in which scientific consensus exists as well as aspects that remain controversial and are the subject of ongoing scientific research. All articles and data sources reviewed should include information about the specific type of study or analysis, population, intervention, exposure, and tests or outcomes. All articles or data sources should be selected systematically for inclusion in the review and critically evaluated.
These reviews are normally written by acknowledged experts and usually by invitation. Potential authors may nominate themselves through communication with the Editor-in-Chief. Invited reviews will also go through the usual peer review process.
• Word limit: 5000 words (excluding abstract and references)
• References: 60 or less
• Abstract: up to 500 words, structured, with the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', 'Conclusion' for systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and unstructured (i.e., no subheadings) for all other types of reviews
• Keywords: 3–6
• Tables/Figures: no limit, but data in text should not be repeated extensively in tables or figures
These are reports of original research studies of any nature (clinical, scientific, professional or educational) that used an acceptable method or design to address a research question or test a hypothesis. Section headings should be: Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Conflicts of Interest Statement, Funding/Support Statement, Acknowledgements (if any), and References.
The Introduction should provide a brief background to the subject of the paper, explain the importance of the study, and state a precise study question or purpose.
The Methods section should describe the study design and methods (including the study setting and dates, patients/participants with inclusion and exclusion criteria, patient samples or animal specimens used, the essential features of any interventions, the main outcome measures, the laboratory methods followed, or data sources and how these were selected for the study), and state the statistical procedures employed in the research.
The Results section should comprise the study results presented in a logical sequence, supplemented by tables and/or figures. Take care that the text does not repeat data that are presented in tables and/or figures. Only emphasize and summarize the essential features of the main results.
The Discussion section should be used to emphasize the new and important aspects of the study, placing the results in context with published literature, the implications of the findings, and the conclusions that follow from the study results.
• Word limit: 4000 words (excluding abstract and references)
• References: 50 or less
• Abstract: up to 350 words, structured, with the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', 'Conclusion'
• Keywords: 3–6
• Tables/Figures: up to 6 tables/figures (data in text should not be repeated extensively in tables or figures)
These report on the clinical management of a patient or a series of patients that provides new insights into the treatment or natural history of a clinical condition.
• Word limit: 2000 words (excluding abstract and references)
• References: 20 or less
• Abstract: up to 350 words, structured, with the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', 'Conclusion'
• Keywords: 3–6
• Tables/Figures: up to 2 tables/figures
These are original reports that describe the specifications, mechanical or technological aspects and evaluation of device(s) used in assessment, treatment, management or education.
• Word limit: 2000 words (excluding abstract and references)
• References: 20 or less
• Abstract: up to 350 words, structured, with the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', 'Conclusion'
• Keywords: 3–6
• Tables/Figures: up to 2 tables/figures
Letters are welcome in response to previously published HKPJ articles, and may also include other communications that will stimulate discussion of relevant subjects. Correspondence should have a title, no more than four authors, include appropriate references and the corresponding author's mailing and e-mail addresses. Correspondence are edited, sometimes extensively, to sharpen their focus. Decisions regarding publication of Correspondence are made by the Editor-in-Chief.
• Word limit: 500 words (excluding references)
• References: 5 or less
• Tables/Figures: 1 table and/or 1 figure
• No abstract, no keywords, no subheadings in main text
Manuscripts (meaning all submission items, including all text, tables, artwork, cover letter, conflicts of interest disclosures, and any other required documents/material) must be submitted online to the HKPJ through the Elsevier EVISE site. This site will guide authors stepwise through the submission process. If assistance is required, please refer to the tutorials for authors and/or customer support that are available on the EVISE site; you may also contact the Editorial Office. Please do not post, fax or e-mail your manuscripts to the Editorial Office.
Professor Marco Pang
Hong Kong Physiotherapy Journal
c/o Department of Rehabilitation Sciences
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Hunghom, Hong Kong SAR
Tel: (+852) 2766-7156
Fax: (+852) 2330-8656
Official website: http://www.hkpj-online.com
While colour figures will be reproduced on the journal's Website in colour free of charge, authors will be charged US$200 per page that has colour figures in the print journal to cover the cost of printing in colour. Authors must inform the HKPJ upon manuscript acceptance if they intend to keep any colour figures for publication in the print journal, otherwise all colour figures will be converted to greyscale as default. Ethics in publishing
Please see our information pages on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication.
Human and animal rights
If the work involves the use of human subjects, the author should ensure that the work described has been carried out in accordance with The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki) for experiments involving humans; Uniform Requirements for manuscripts submitted to Biomedical journals. Authors should include a statement in the manuscript that informed consent was obtained for experimentation with human subjects. The privacy rights of human subjects must always be observed.
Declaration of interest
All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations 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. Authors must disclose any interests in two places: 1. A summary declaration of interest statement in the title page file (if double-blind) or the manuscript file (if single-blind). If there are no interests to declare then please state this: 'Declarations of interest: none'. This summary statement will be ultimately published if the article is accepted. 2. Detailed disclosures as part of a separate Declaration of Interest form, which forms part of the journal's official records. It is important for potential interests to be declared in both places and that the information matches. More information.
Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' section of our ethics policy for more information), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, including electronically without the written consent of the copyright-holder. To verify originality, your article may be checked by the originality detection service CrossCheck.
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.
Authors are expected to consider carefully the list and order of authors before submitting their manuscript and provide the definitive list of authors at the time of the original submission. Any addition, deletion or rearrangement of author names in the authorship list should be made only before the manuscript has been accepted and only if approved by the journal Editor. To request such a change, the Editor must receive the following from the corresponding author: (a) the reason for the change in author list and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed.
Only in exceptional circumstances will the Editor consider the addition, deletion or rearrangement of authors after the manuscript has been accepted. While the Editor considers the request, publication of the manuscript will be suspended. If the manuscript has already been published in an online issue, any requests approved by the Editor will result in a corrigendum.
Clinical trial results
In line with the position of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, the journal will not consider results posted in the same clinical trials registry in which primary registration resides to be prior publication if the results posted are presented in the form of a brief structured (less than 500 words) abstract or table. However, divulging results in other circumstances (e.g., investors' meetings) is discouraged and may jeopardise consideration of the manuscript. Authors should fully disclose all posting in registries of results of the same or closely related work.
Randomized controlled trials should be presented according to the CONSORT guidelines. At manuscript submission, authors must provide the CONSORT checklist accompanied by a flow diagram that illustrates the progress of patients through the trial, including recruitment, enrollment, randomization, withdrawal and completion, and a detailed description of the randomization procedure. The CONSORT checklist and template flow diagram are available online.
Registration of clinical trials
Registration in a public trials registry is a condition for publication of clinical trials in this journal in accordance with International Committee of Medical Journal Editors recommendations. Trials must register at or before the onset of patient enrolment. The clinical trial registration number should be included at the end of the abstract of the article. A clinical trial is defined as any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects of health outcomes. Health-related interventions include any intervention used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome (for example drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, dietary interventions, and process-of-care changes). Health outcomes include any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events. Purely observational studies (those in which the assignment of the medical intervention is not at the discretion of the investigator) will not require registration.
Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (see more information on this). 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.
As an author you (or your employer or institution) have certain rights to reuse your work. More information.
Find out how you can share your research published in Elsevier journals.
Role of the funding source
You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.
This is a subsidized open access journal where the Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association pays for the publishing costs incurred by the journal. Authors are not charged Article Processing Charges. All articles will be available Open Access on ScienceDirect. Permitted (re)use is that outlined by the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND) license, which states that for non-commercial purposes, others may distribute and copy the article, and include in a collective work (such as an anthology), as long as they credit the author(s) and provided they do not alter or modify the article.
Elsevier Publishing Campus
The Elsevier Publishing Campus (www.publishingcampus.com) is an online platform offering free lectures, interactive training and professional advice to support you in publishing your research. The College of Skills training offers modules on how to prepare, write and structure your article and explains how editors will look at your paper when it is submitted for publication. Use these resources, and more, to ensure that your submission will be the best that you can make it.
Please write your text in good English (using British English spelling). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/languageediting/) or visit our customer support site (http://support.elsevier.com) for more information.
Informed consent and patient details
Studies on patients or volunteers require ethics committee approval and informed consent, which should be documented in the paper. Appropriate consents, permissions and releases must be obtained where an author wishes to include case details or other personal information or images of patients and any other individuals in an Elsevier publication. Written consents must be retained by the author and copies of the consents or evidence that such consents have been obtained must be provided to Elsevier on request. For more information, please review the Elsevier Policy on the Use of Images or Personal Information of Patients or other Individuals. Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), the personal details of any patient included in any part of the article and in any supplementary materials (including all illustrations and videos) must be removed before submission.
Our online submission system guides you stepwise through the process of entering your article details and uploading your files. The system converts your article files to a single PDF file used in the peer-review process. Editable files (e.g., Word, LaTeX) are required to typeset your article for final publication. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, is sent by e-mail.
Submit your article
Please submit your article at the journal's EVISE site.
Please submit the names and institutional e-mail addresses of several potential referees. For more details, visit our Support site. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used.
The following documents must be included in your submission. Items (1), (2) and (3) are mandatory. Items (4), (5), (6) and (7) are required only if they are applicable to your manuscript.
• title of the manuscript
• first author's details (name, e-mail, mailing address, telephone and fax numbers)
• corresponding author’s details (name, e-mail, mailing address, telephone and fax numbers)
• a statement that the material contained in the manuscript has not been previously published and is not being concurrently submitted elsewhere
• persons who do not fulfill the requirements to be listed as authors but who nevertheless contributed to the manuscript (such as those who provided writing assistance, for example) should be disclosed
• list of manuscripts that have been published, submitted, or are in press that are similar to the submission to the HKPJ (and include in your submission copies of those similar manuscripts so that HKPJ Editors can be assured there is no overlap)
• the signature of the corresponding author
(2) Authorship & Conflicts of Interest Statement. Each author's contribution to the manuscript should be listed. Any and all potential and actual conflicts of interest should also be listed and the details of the conflict(s) described. Please use the HKPJ Authorship & Conflicts of Interest Statement form. Please ensure that the name of each author listed in your manuscript appears in either Section I or Section II on page 2 of the form (an author's name cannot appear in both Section I and Section II of the form). Your signature and those of ALL your coauthors must be included.(3) Copyright Transfer Agreement. In the event that your manuscript is accepted for publication in the HKPJ, you are required to transfer all copyright ownership in and relating to the work to the Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association Limited. Please use the HKPJ Copyright Transfer Agreement form. Your signature and those of ALL your coauthors must be included. However, the Agreement will be null and void if your manuscript is not published in the HKPJ.
(4) Ethics Statement. Articles covering the use of human or animal samples in research, or human or animal experiments must be accompanied by a letter of approval from the relevant review committee or authorities.(5) Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) flowchart for randomized controlled trials submitted for publication.
(6) Signed Statement of Informed Consent. Articles where human patients can be identified in descriptions, photographs or pedigrees in the manuscript must be accompanied by a signed statement of informed consent to publish (in print and online) the descriptions, photographs and pedigrees from each patient who can be identified.(7) Copyright Permission. If you have reproduced or adapted material from other copyrighted sources, the letter(s) of permission from the copyright holder(s) to reproduce or adapt the copyrighted sources must be supplied. Otherwise, such material must be removed from your manuscript. Peer review
This journal operates a double blind review process. All contributions are typically sent to a minimum of two independent expert reviewers to assess the scientific quality of the paper. The Editor is responsible for the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of articles. The Editor's decision is final. More information on types of peer review.
Use of word processing software
It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the word processor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the word processor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier). Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the 'spell-check' and 'grammar-check' functions of your word processor.
Subdivision - unnumbered sections
Divide your article into clearly defined sections. Each subsection is given a brief heading. Each heading should appear on its own separate line. Subsections should be used as much as possible when cross-referencing text: refer to the subsection by heading as opposed to simply 'the text'.
State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results. Results
Results should be clear and concise. Conclusion
The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusion section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of the Discussion section.
If there is more than one appendix, they should be identified as A, B, etc. Formulae and equations in appendices should be given separate numbering: Eq. (A.1), Eq. (A.2), etc.; in a subsequent appendix, Eq. (B.1) and so on. Similarly for tables and figures: Table A.1; Fig. A.1, etc.
The title page should contain the following information (in order, from the top to bottom of the page):
• Article type.
• Article title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
• Author names* and affiliations. Where the family name may be ambiguous (e.g., a double name), please indicate this clearly. (*Author names should be spelled out in full, and the name of each author should be written with the family name last, e.g., Naomi Chung-Yan Cheung.) Present the authors' affiliations (where the actual work was done) below the names. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate affiliation. Provide the e-mail address, if available, of each author.
• Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that phone numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address. Contact details must be kept up to date by the corresponding author.
• Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a 'Present address' (or 'Permanent address') may be indicated as a footnote to that author's name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes.
A concise and factual abstract is required for the following article categories: Review Papers, Research Papers, Treatment Reports and Technical Notes.
Abstracts for Review Papers should have 500 words or fewer. The abstract must be structured, with the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', and 'Conclusion' for systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and unstructured (i.e., no subheadings) for all other types of review.
Abstracts for Research Papers, Treatment Reports and Technical Notes should have 350 words or fewer, and be structured by means of the subheadings 'Background', 'Objective', 'Methods', 'Results', and 'Conclusion'. The abstract should provide the context or background for the research and should state its purpose, basic procedures (selection of study participants, observational and analytical methods), main findings (giving specific effect sizes and their statistical significance, if possible), and principal conclusions. It should emphasize new and important aspects of the study or observations.
An abstract is often presented separately from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, then cite the author(s) and year(s). Also, non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.
No abstract is required for Editorials and Correspondence.
Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 6 keywords in alphabetical order, using British spelling and avoiding general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, 'and', 'of'). If possible, keywords should be selected from the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) list of Index Medicus (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/mesh/meshhome.html). Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes.
No keywords are required for Editorials and Correspondence.
Where a term/definition will be continually referred to, it must be written in full when it first appears in the text, followed by the subsequent abbreviation in parentheses (even if it was previously defined in the abstract). Thereafter, the abbreviation may be used. An abbreviation should not be first defined in any section heading; if an abbreviation has previously been defined in the text, then the abbreviation may be used in a subsequent section heading. Restrict the number of abbreviations to those that are absolutely necessary and ensure consistency of abbreviations throughout the article. Ensure that an abbreviation so defined does actually appear later in the text (excluding in figures/tables), otherwise, it should be deleted.
Collate acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the article before the references and do not, therefore, include them on the title page, as a footnote to the title or otherwise. List here those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g., providing language help, writing assistance or proof reading the article, etc.).
It is not necessary to include detailed descriptions on the program or type of grants and awards. When funding is from a block grant or other resources available to a university, college, or other research institution, submit the name of the institute or organization that provided the funding.If no funding has been provided for the research, please include the following sentence:
This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.Units
Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other units are mentioned, please give their equivalent in SI. Blood pressure values are to be reported in mmHg. Use the metric system for the expression of length, area, mass, and volume. Temperatures are to be given in degrees Celsius.
Numbers that begin a sentence or those that are less than 10 should be spelled out using letters. Centuries and decades should be spelled out, e.g., the Eighties or nineteenth century. Laboratory parameters, time, temperature, length, area, mass, and volume should be expressed using digits.
Use the Recommended International Non-proprietary Name (rINN) for medicinal substances, unless the specific trade name of a drug is directly relevant to the discussion. Generic drug names should appear in lowercase letters in the text. If a specific proprietary drug needs to be identified, the brand name may appear only once in the manuscript in parentheses following the generic name the first time the drug is mentioned in the text.
For devices and other products, the specific brand or trade name, the manufacturer and their location (city, state, country) should be provided the first time the device or product is mentioned in the text, for example, “…IBM SPSS Statistics 21.0 was used (IBM Corp., Armonk, NY, USA)”. Thereafter, the generic term (if appropriate) should be used.
Current standard international nomenclature for genes should be adhered to. For human genes, use genetic notation and symbols approved by the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee (http://www.genenames.org). You may also refer to the resources available on PubMed at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/guide/genes-expression. The Human Genome Variation Society has a useful site that provides guidance in naming mutations at http://www.hgvs.org/mutnomen/index.html. In your manuscript, genes should be typed in italic font and include the accession number.
Statistical analysis is essential for all research papers except Case Reports. Use correct nomenclature for statistical methods (e.g., two sample t test, not unpaired t test). Descriptive statistics should follow the scales used in data description. Inferential statistics are important for interpreting results and should be described in detail. All p values should be presented to the third decimal place for accuracy. The smallest p value that should be expressed is p < 0.001 since additional zeros do not convey useful information; the largest p value that should be expressed is p > 0.99.
Elsevier encourages authors to connect articles with external databases, giving their readers one-click access to relevant databases that help to build a better understanding of the described research. Please refer to relevant database identifiers using the following format in your article: Database: xxxx (e.g., TAIR: AT1G01020; CCDC: 734053; PDB: 1XFN). See http://www.elsevier.com/databaselinking for more information and a full list of supported databases.
Present simple formulae in the line of normal text where possible and use the solidus (/) instead of a horizontal line for small fractional terms, e.g., X/Y. In principle, variables are to be presented in italics. Powers of e are often more conveniently denoted by exp. Number consecutively any equations that have to be displayed separately from the text (if referred to explicitly in the text).
Conflicts of interest statement
Since it is difficult to distinguish between an actual conflict of interest and a perceived conflict of interest, the HKPJ requires authors to disclose all and any potential conflicts of interest and let readers judge for themselves. Therefore, please ensure that you provide information about any potential financial and non-financial conflicts of interest in a concise paragraph after the main text. If none, then state, ''The author(s) have no conflicts of interest relevant to this article.''
All grants, financial and material support for the research, work, writing and editorial assistance from internal or external agencies, including commercial companies, should be clearly and completely identified in a funding/support statement. If none, then state, ''No financial or material support of any kind was received for the work described in this article.'' General guidelines
The number of illustrations should be restricted to the minimum necessary to support the textual material. Ensure that each illustration is numbered consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text and has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used at the end of the caption. Items requiring explanatory footnotes should be denoted using superscripted lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.), with the footnotes in alphabetical order at the end of the caption. Asterisks (*, **) are used only to indicate the probability level of tests of significance. Abbreviations used must be defined and placed after the footnotes in alphabetical order. If you have included or adapted the figure from another source, whether published or unpublished, you must acknowledge the original source in the caption (and have documentary evidence to show that you have been granted permission to use or adapt the figure should you be asked for such evidence.
Privacy of research participants
Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), identifying information (e.g., names, initials, hospital numbers, date of birth) of the patient must be removed. Informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt that anonymity can be maintained. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of patients is inadequate protection of anonymity. If identifying characteristics are de-identified, authors should provide assurance, and editors should so note, that such changes do not distort scientific meaning. For further information, see http://www.elsevier.com/patientphotographs.
Whilst it is accepted that authors sometimes need to manipulate images for clarity, manipulation for purposes of deception or fraud will be seen as scientific ethical abuse and will be dealt with accordingly. For graphical images, this journal is applying the following policy: no specific feature within an image may be enhanced, obscured, moved, removed, or introduced. Adjustments of brightness, contrast, or colour balance are acceptable if and as long as they do not obscure or eliminate any information present in the original. Nonlinear adjustments (e.g. changes to gamma settings) must be disclosed in the figure legend.
• Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
• Embed the used fonts if the application provides that option.
• Aim to use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, Symbol, or use fonts that look similar.
• Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
• Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
• Provide captions to illustrations separately.
• Size the illustrations close to the desired dimensions of the printed version.
• Submit each illustration as a separate file.
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
• If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is' in the native document format.
• Regardless of the application used other than Microsoft Office, when your electronic artwork is finalized, please 'Save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
- EPS (or PDF): Vector drawings, embed all used fonts.
- TIFF (or JPEG): Colour or greyscale photographs (halftones), keep to a minimum of 300 dpi.
- TIFF (or JPEG): Bitmapped (pure black & white pixels) line drawings, keep to a minimum of 1000 dpi.
- TIFF (or JPEG): Combination of bitmapped line/half-tone (colour or greyscale), keep to a minimum of 500 dpi.
• Supply files that are optimized for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); these typically have a low number of pixels and limited set of colours;
• Supply files that are too low in resolution;
• Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG), EPS (or PDF), or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable colour figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in colour on the Web (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in colour in the printed version. For colour reproduction in print, authors will be charged US$200 per page that has colour figures. Authors must inform the HKPJ upon manuscript acceptance if they intend to keep any colour figures for publication in the print journal, otherwise all colour figures will be converted to greyscale as default. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
Please note: Because of technical complications which can arise by converting colour figures to 'greyscale' (for the printed version should you not opt for colour in print) please submit in addition usable greyscale versions of all the colour illustrations.
Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/illustrationservices) offers Illustration Services to authors preparing to submit a manuscript but concerned about the quality of the images accompanying their article. Elsevier's expert illustrators can produce scientific, technical and medical-style images, as well as a full range of charts, tables and graphs. Image 'polishing' is also available, where our illustrators take your image(s) and improve them to a professional standard. Please visit the website to find out more.
Tables should have a concise table heading, be self-explanatory, and numbered consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Items requiring explanatory footnotes should be denoted using superscripted lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.), with the footnotes arranged below the table body in alphabetical order. Asterisks (*, **) are used only to indicate the probability level of tests of significance. Abbreviations used in the table must be defined and placed after the footnotes in alphabetical order. Avoid vertical rules. If you include a block of data or table from another source, whether published or unpublished, you must acknowledge the original source at the end of the table footnotes (and have documentary evidence to show that you have been granted permission to use the material should you be asked for such evidence). Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article.
Citation in text
Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). Any references cited in the abstract must be given in full. Unpublished results and personal communications are not recommended in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text. If these references are included in the reference list they should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the publication date with either 'Unpublished results' or 'Personal communication'. Citation of a reference as 'in press' implies that the item has been accepted for publication.
Increased discoverability of research and high quality peer review are ensured by online links to the sources cited. In order to allow us to create links to abstracting and indexing services, such as Scopus, CrossRef and PubMed, please ensure that data provided in the references are correct. Please note that incorrect surnames, journal/book titles, publication year and pagination may prevent link creation. When copying references, please be careful as they may already contain errors. Use of the DOI is encouraged.
As a minimum, the full URL should be given and the date when the reference was last accessed. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.
These sources cannot be included in the references list but may be described in the text. The author(s) must give the full name and highest academic degree of the person, the date of the communication, and indicate whether it was in oral or written (letter, fax, e-mail) form. A signed statement of permission should be included from each person identified as a source of information in a personal communication or as a source for unpublished data.
This journal encourages you to cite underlying or relevant datasets in your manuscript by citing them in your text and including a data reference in your Reference List. Data references should include the following elements: author name(s), dataset title, data repository, version (where available), year, and global persistent identifier. Add [dataset] immediately before the reference so we can properly identify it as a data reference. The [dataset] identifier will not appear in your published article.
As with unpublished results and personal communications, references to arXiv documents are not recommended in the reference list. Please make every effort to obtain the full reference of the published version of an arXiv document. If a reference to an arXiv document must be included in the references list it should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the volume and page numbers with 'arXiv:YYMM.NNNN' or 'arXiv:arch-ive/YYMMNNN' for articles submitted to arXiv before April 2007. Reference management software
Most Elsevier journals have their reference template available in many of the most popular reference management software products. These include all products that support Citation Style Language styles, such as Mendeley and Zotero, as well as EndNote. Using the word processor plug-ins from these products, authors only need to select the appropriate journal template when preparing their article, after which citations and bibliographies will be automatically formatted in the journal's style. If no template is yet available for this journal, please follow the format of the sample references and citations as shown in this Guide.
Text: Indicate references by number(s) in square brackets in line with the text, numbered consecutively in order of appearance and placed before punctuation. The actual authors can be referred to, but the reference number(s) must always be given.
List: Number the references (numbers in square brackets) in the list in the order in which they appear in the text. References should include, in order, author surnames and initials, article title, abbreviated journal name, year, volume and inclusive page numbers. The last names and initials of all the authors up to 6 should be included, but when authors number 7 or more, list the first 6 authors only followed by 'et al'.
Note shortened form for last page number, e.g., 51–9, and that for more than 6 authors the first 6 should be listed followed by 'et al.' For further details you are referred to the 'Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts submitted to Biomedical Journals' (J Am Med Assoc 1997;277:927–34) (see also http://www.nlm.nih.gov/bsd/uniform_requirements.html).
Reference to a journal article:
 Wong TPS, Leung EYW, Poon CYC, Leung CYF, Lau BPH. Balance performance in children with unilateral and bilateral severe-to-profound-grade hearing impairment. Hong Kong J Physiol 2013;31:81–7.
 Kaplan NM. The endothelium as prognostic factor and therapeutic target: What criteria should we apply? J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 1998;32(Suppl 3):S78–80.
Reference to a journal article not in English but with English abstract:
 Kawai H, Ishikawa T, Moroi J, Hanyu N, Sawada M, Kobayashi N, et al. Elderly patient with cerebellar malignant astrocytoma. No Shinkei Geka 2008;36:799–805. [In Japanese, English abstract]
 Strunk Jr W, White EB. The elements of style. 4th ed. New York: Longman; 2000.
Reference to an edited book:
 Letheridge S, Cannon CR, editors. Bilingual education: Teaching English as a second language. New York: Praeger; 1980.
 Greaves M, Culligan DJ. Blood and bone marrow. In: Underwood JCE, editor. General and systematic pathology. 4th ed. London: Churchill Livingstone; 2004, p. 615–72.
Reference to an edited book series:
 Wilson JG, Fraser FC, editors. Handbook of teratology, vols. 1–4. New York: Plenum Press; 1977–1978.
 World Health Organization. World health report 2002: Reducing risk, promoting healthy life. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2002.
Reference to electronic publications:
 Duchin JS. Can preparedness for biological terrorism save us from pertussis? Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 2004;158(2). Available at http://archpedi.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/158/2/106. Accessed June 12, 2004.
 Smeeth L, Iliffe S. Community screening for visual impairment in the elderly. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2002(2):CD001054. Doi:10.1002/14651858.CD1001054.
 Ayers AJ. Retention of resin restorations by means of enamel etching and by pins. MSD thesis, Indiana University, Indianapolis, 1971.
Reference to a website:
 American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. Wisdom teeth management. Rosemont, IL: AAOMS, 2014. Available at http://www.aaoms.org/wisdom_teeth.php. Accessed July 21, 2014.
Journal abbreviations source
Journal names should be abbreviated according to the List of Title Word Abbreviations: http://www.issn.org/services/online-services/access-to-the-ltwa/.
Elsevier accepts video material and animation sequences to support and enhance your scientific research. Authors who have video or animation files that they wish to submit with their article are strongly encouraged to include links to these within the body of the article. This can be done in the same way as a figure or table by referring to the video or animation content and noting in the body text where it should be placed. All submitted files should be properly labeled so that they directly relate to the video file's content. In order to ensure that your video or animation material is directly usable, please provide the files in one of our recommended file formats with a preferred maximum size of 150 MB in total. Any single file should not exceed 50 MB. Video and animation files supplied will be published online in the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect. Please supply 'stills' with your files: you can choose any frame from the video or animation or make a separate image. These will be used instead of standard icons and will personalize the link to your video data. For more detailed instructions please visit our video instruction pages. Note: since video and animation cannot be embedded in the print version of the journal, please provide text for both the electronic and the print version for the portions of the article that refer to this content.
Supplementary material such as applications, images and sound clips, can be published with your article to enhance it. Submitted supplementary items are published exactly as they are received (Excel or PowerPoint files will appear as such online). Please submit your material together with the article and supply a concise, descriptive caption for each supplementary file. If you wish to make changes to supplementary material during any stage of the process, please make sure to provide an updated file. Do not annotate any corrections on a previous version. Please switch off the 'Track Changes' option in Microsoft Office files as these will appear in the published version.
Elsevier encourages and supports authors to share raw data sets underpinning their research publication where appropriate and enables interlinking of articles and data. More information on depositing, sharing and using research data.
The journal encourages authors to create an AudioSlides presentation with their published article. AudioSlides are brief, webinar-style presentations that are shown next to the online article on ScienceDirect. This gives authors the opportunity to summarize their research in their own words and to help readers understand what the paper is about. More information and examples are available. Authors of this journal will automatically receive an invitation e-mail to create an AudioSlides presentation after acceptance of their paper.
The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
Ensure that the following items are present:One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
• E-mail address
• Full postal address
• Phone numbers
All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
• All figure captions
• All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
• Manuscript has been 'spell-checked' and 'grammar-checked'
• References are in the correct format for this journal
• All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
• Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web)
• Colour figures are clearly marked as being intended for colour reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print, or to be reproduced in colour on the Web (free of charge) and in greyscale in print
• If only colour on the Web is required, greyscale versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes
For any further information please visit our customer support site at http://support.elsevier.com.Additional information
The editorial and peer review process
As a general rule, the receipt of a manuscript will be acknowledged within 2 weeks of submission, and authors will be provided with a manuscript reference number for future correspondence. If such an acknowledgement is not received in a reasonable period of time, the author should contact the Editorial Office.
Manuscripts are then forwarded to the Editor-in-Chief, who makes an initial assessment of it. If the manuscript does not appear to be of sufficient merit or is not appropriate for the journal, then the manuscript will be rejected without review.Manuscripts that appear meritorious and appropriate for the journal are reviewed by at least two Editorial Board members or expert consultants assigned by the Editor-in-Chief. The HKPJ follows a double-blind peer review process. Authors may submit a list in their cover letter of reviewers who they wish to review or not to review their manuscript. However, the actual peer reviewers invited will remain anonymous and may or may not be the reviewers suggested by the authors as the selection of reviewers is at the sole discretion of HKPJ Editors. The editors will not disclose any information about a manuscript or its review to anyone except the manuscript's corresponding author. The Editor-in-Chief reserves the right to make the final decision regarding the acceptance or rejection of manuscripts.
The corresponding author will usually be notified within 6 weeks of whether the submitted article is accepted for publication, rejected, or subject to revision before acceptance (however, do note that delays are sometimes unavoidable). If revisions are required, authors are asked to return a revised manuscript to the Editorial Office via EVISE within 30–60 days, depending on the extent of the revisions required. Please notify the Editorial Office in advance if additional time is needed or if you choose not to submit a revised manuscript.Preparation for publication
Once a manuscript has been accepted for publication, authors should submit the final version of their manuscript (and final versions of all tables/figures as applicable) via EVISE. Accepted manuscripts are copyedited according to the journal's style and corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. Authors are responsible for all statements made in their work, including changes made by the copyeditor. Use of the Digital Object Identifier
The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI (in URL format, from an article in the journal Physics Letters B): http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physletb.2010.09.059
When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.
Online proof correction
Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. 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. It is important to ensure that all 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.
• Authorship & Conflicts of Interest Statement
• Copyright Transfer Agreement
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