Neurocritical Care Journal

Instructions for Authors

Online Manuscript Submission

Manuscripts must be submitted through the publisher’s online manuscript system Editorial Manager® that manages the entire workflow of all manuscripts.  Careful attention to the submission process is critical. I appreciate that the process may be cumbersome and value your patience.

In addition to submitting your manuscript to Editorial Manager, we ask that you complete a Conflict of Interest (COI) form (found here) and upload it to Editorial Manager. The form was developed by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) to standardize COI reporting. This is important to help keep manuscripts published in Neurocritical Care are free of bias or conflict of interest. More details are provided below.

Editorial Manager supports a wide range of submission file formats: for manuscripts - Word, WordPerfect, RTF, TXT, and LaTex; for figures - TIFF, GIF, JPEG, EPS, PPT, and Postscript. PDF is not an acceptable file format.

For Questions related to manuscript submission or preparation, please contact the Editorial Office of Neurocritical Care: Michael Diringer, MD at diringerm@wustl.edu

For Questions related to Neurocritical Care publication, please contact Springer Nature Publishing at: Sean.Beppler@springer.com

DOWNLOAD FULL INSTRUCTIONS

Preparing for the Submission Process

The following information is needed for the submission process:
  1. Cover letter
  2. Article type-see below
  3. Title
  4. Authors – title, name, e-mail address, institution and country and contribution to the manuscript
  5. Funding information- Funder, Award Number, and Grant Recipient
  6. Abstract – only for specific article types
  7. Keywords
  8. Classifications – select from list
  9. Comments to the editorial staff (if any)
  10. Files – separate files for manuscript, each table and figure and COI form for each author.

Cover Letter 

A cover letter should be included addressing the following: 1) Identify the type of article and confirm that it complies with all instructions to authors; 2) Indicate that authorship requirements have been met and all authors and the final manuscript was approved by all authors; 3) Confirm that this manuscript has not been published elsewhere and is not under consideration by another journal; 4) Confirm that the source of funding for the study, potential conflicts of interest for all authors, adhering to ethical guidelines, use of informed consent and ethical approvals (IRB) are described in the manuscript; 5) suggested reviewers (optional). 

Title Page

The title page should contain: 1) title; 2) For each author name, highest degree and institutional affiliation; 3) name of the institution(s) where the work was performed; 4) corresponding author contact information included e-mail address; 5) financial support used for the study, including institutional departmental funds; 6) key words for indexing, using terms from the Medical Subject Headings list of Index Medicus;  7) Source of support (if none state so); 8) word count (excluding abstract, acknowledgments, tables, figure legends, and references); 9) number of Figures and Tables

Authors Detail Page

This should include: 1) a description of each authors' contribution to the work; 2) conflicts of interest. 

Abstracts

Structure abstracts for original work submissions should be no more than 300 words in length and include the headings: Background/objective, Methods, Results and Conclusions.  Abstract for other types of articles do not have to have those headings.  The results should include data values not just descriptive terms. 

Text

The text should be written in standard scientific English and carefully proofread. The text should be divided into the following sections: Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, and Conclusions.  These should be followed by Acknowledgments, References, Figure Legends, and Tables.  Conclusions should not extend beyond what the data indicate.  Non-standard abbreviations should be avoided wherever possible and defined on first use.  Arabic numbers should be used for in-text citations (set within parentheses) numbered consecutively. 


What to Expect After Submission

The editor-in-chief will review your submission and determine whether the work meets our criteria for external peer review.  Those that do not are rejected and the authors are sent a brief description of the reasons. 

We strive to have two or three blinded peer reviewers evaluate your submission.  When complete those are evaluated by the editors and an initial decision made using the following options:

  • Reject – there are major uncorrectable concerns about originality, relevance, validity or overall quality.
  • Revise and reconsider – the paper is not acceptable as it stands but if the authors respond appropriately to the comments it could be.
  • Revisions needed – the manuscript is acceptable but needs some cleaning up.
  • Accept

If a revision is requested, you will be provided with the reviewers and editors comments and asked to provide point-by-point responses along with a revised manuscript.  Additional rounds of peer review and revision may occur until the manuscript is ready to accept.

Once accepted the manuscript is send for production and page proofs are generated.  They will be sent to you so you may proofread your paper.  We ask that you completed that within 48 hours so as to not delay posting your paper on-line.  Later on, it will be incorporated into an issue of Neurocritical Care. 

Article Types Accepted

  • Original work (Clinical Investigation, Basic Science)
  • Review article
  • Current Opinion/Arguments
  • Editorial
  • Ethical Matters
  • Take a closer look at trials
  • Take Notice: Technology
  • Neuro-Images
  • A Day in the Life of a Neurocritical Care Trainee
  • Practical Pearl
  • Letters to the editor

Article Requirements

  • General Requirements
  • Title: No subtitles
  • Authors: Describe each author’s role in the manuscript. See requirements for article type.
  • Funding: describe funding for project
  • Key Words: 3-5 for indexing
  • Abstract: 300 words maximum See requirements for article type.
  • Sections for original articles must include Introduction, Methods, Results, and Conclusion.
  • References: See requirements for article type.
  • Maximum words (does not include figures, tables, and references): original articles 4,000, review articles 5,000, see below for other types of submissions.
  • Conflict of Interest (COI) statement (see description below): from each contributing author uploaded as a separate file.
  • Figure and tables: Provide titles, and spell out all abbreviations, number consecutively with Arabic numerals, see below for other types of submissions. Use a separate page for each; callouts (if any) should be capital letters.
  • Include figure captions in a separate section at the end of the manuscript; define all abbreviations and provide sufficient information to interpret the figure without reading the text.
  • All illustrations must be provided in professional-quality, finished form, ready for direct reproduction without revision.
  • Micrograph magnification should be given with scale bars defined in microns, not as “x magnification.”
  • Table: use a separate page for each, numbered consecutively with Arabic numerals in order of mention in the text. Please provide titles.
  • References should follow that of The New England Journal of Medicine. An EndNote template can be found below
  • Statement of human and animal rights (see below)

Special Requirements for Submission Types

What I learned today a Neurocritical Care Trainee

  • Focus on clinical decision making in challenging cases which requires complex decision making (unusual diseases or atypical presentations of common diseases)
  • Authors: Two authors, one must be a trainee. Describe each author's role int he manuscript
  • No abstract
  • Suggested subheadings: Introduction, Case, Management, Discussion and Key points
  • References: maximum of 10
  • Length: maximum of 1500 words (does not include figures, tables and references)

Take Notice: Technology

  • Focus on a new device or new application of an old device
  • Authors: maximum of 3, describe each author's role in the manuscript
  • Key words: 3-5 for indexing
  • Abstract: up to 250 words
  • References: maximum of 10
  • Length: maximum of 2,000 words (does not include figures, tables and references)

Neuro-Images

  • Authors: maximum of 3, describe each author's role in the manuscript
  • Key words: 3-5 for indexing
  • No abstract
  • Include an Introduction and a description of the case
  • Figure legends/descriptions may be up to 250 words each
  • Images should be at least 300 dpi
  • References: maximum of 3
  • Length: maximum of 3,000 words (does not include figures, tables and references)

Current Opinion/Arguments

  • Abstract: 300 words maximum
  • Length: 3,000 words maximum (does not include figures, tables and references)
  • Authors: maximum of 7 authors, describe each author's role in manuscript
  • References: maximum of 20

Practical Pearl

  • Include a description of the case, lesson learned, why it is a “practical pearl”, and how you apply it in your practice.
  • Authors: maximum 3, describe each author's role in manuscript
  • No abstract
  • Length: maximum of 1,500 words
  • Figures are encouraged

Letter to the editor

  • Authors: maximum of 4
  • Limit of 400 words
  • Maximum of 5 references (the first reference must be the publication in question if letter relates to a publication)

Specifications for Computer Graphics and Color Art

Computer Graphics: If your submission includes Computer Graphics, acceptable software formats are: Adobe Illustrator versions 5 and up; Adobe Photoshop versions 5 and up, and MS Office. File formats are as follows: EPS (Encapsulated Postscript), TIFF, and those native software formats listed above. dpi specifications: line art should be no less than 1200 dpi; halftone scans should be 300 dpi.

Preferred file formats, graphics: Vector graphics, preferred is EPS. For Line Art (Black & white with no shading) and Halftone art (Photographs, drawings, or paintings with shading), TIFF format is preferred.

Preferred file formats, media: avi, wmv, mp4, mov, m2p, mp2, mpg, mpeg, flv, mxf, mts, m4v, 3gp . Resolution; 16:9 or 4:3. Maximum file size: 25 GB. Minimum video duraction: 1 second Current Springer art guidelines are available here.

Color Art: If your submission includes Color Art, it cannot be printed unless the author is willing to assume the additional costs involved in production. (Quotes subject to change.) For color printed in the hard copy version there is a flat $1,150 fee. Color figures will be published online at no cost.

All color art must adhere to the guidelines under Computer Graphics. Color art must be prepared in RGB color mode.

References

  • References should follow that of The New England Journal of Medicine. An EndNote template can be found here.
  • Arabic numbers should be used for in-text citations(set within parentheses at point of citation
  • List references in numerical order in text in the reference section.
  • Abbreviations for titles of medical periodicals should conform to those used in the latest edition of Index Medicus and on MEDLINE.
  • List all authors when there are six or fewer; when there are seven or more, list the first three, then “et al.”
  • References should follow that of The New England Journal of Medicine and examples are given below:

Journal article:

  • Jones R, Sealy T. Isolated FSH deficiency revisited. N Engl J Med 1979; 300: 126– 128.
  • Zirkin J, Weinbauer EA, Lee A. The use of aspirin in ischemic heart disease. J Am Coll Cardiol 1996; 81: 243–256.

Book chapter:

  • Knepper MA, Rector FC Jr. Urine concentration and dilution. In: Brenner BM, ed. Brenner & Rector’s The Kidney: Diagnosis and Treatment, 5th ed., vol. 1. Philadelphia: Saunders, 1996:532–570.

Disclosure of Potential Conflict of Interest (COI)

Authors must disclose all relationships or interests that could influence or bias the work using the ICMJE form found here. Although an author may not feel there are conflicts, disclosure of relationships and interests affords a more transparent process, leading to an accurate and objective assessment of the work. Awareness of real or perceived conflicts of interests is a perspective to which the readers are entitled and is not meant to imply that a financial relationship with an organization that sponsored the research or compensation for consultancy work is inappropriate. Examples of potential conflicts of interests that are directly or indirectly related to the research may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Research grants from funding agencies (please give the research funder and the grant number)
  • Honoraria for speaking at symposia
  • Financial support for attending symposia
  • Financial support for educational programs
  • Employment or consultation
  • Support from a project sponsor
  • Position on advisory board or board of directors or other type of management relationships
  • Multiple affiliations
  • Financial relationships, for example equity ownership or investment interest
  • Intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, copyrights and royalties from such rights)
  • Holdings of spouse and/or children that may have financial interest in the work

In addition, interests that go beyond financial interests and compensation (non-financial interests) that may be important to readers should be disclosed. These may include but are not limited to personal relationships or competing interests directly or indirectly tied to this research, or professional interests or personal beliefs that may influence your research. The corresponding author collects the conflict of interest disclosure forms from all authors. In author collaborations where formal agreements for representation allow it, it is sufficient for the corresponding author to sign the disclosure form on behalf of all authors. Examples of a completed form may be found here at the ICMJE site (pdf will download upon clicking this link)

The corresponding author will include a summary statement in the text of the manuscript in a separate section before the reference list, that reflects what is recorded in the potential conflict of interest disclosure form(s).

Examples of disclosures:

  • Funding: This study was funded by X (grant number X).
  • Conflict of Interest: Author A has received research grants from Company A. Author B has received a speaker honorarium from Company X and owns stock in Company Y. Author C is a member of committee Z.
  • If no conflict exists, the authors should state: The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

NOTE: Always keep copies of your word-processing, graphics and COI files. You may want to revise the manuscript text, figures or forms after the review process and you will need the original files if your manuscript requires revisions.

NOTE: In case you encounter any difficulties while submitting your manuscript online, please get in touch with an Editorial Assistant by clicking on “CONTACT US” from the tool bar.

Criteria for Authorship

The criteria for authorship adopted by Neurocritical Care are set by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors ( http://www.icmje.org/). A discussion of role of authors and criteria for authorship can be found here. Authorship credit should be based only on 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version to be published. Conditions 1, 2, and 3 must all be met. Acquisition of funding, the collection of data, feedback on the manuscript, or general supervision of the research group, by themselves, do not justify authorship.

Authors Named: Neurocritical Care does not publish statements of equal authorship. Author and Study Groups may be noted under a collective name.

Ethical Responsibilities of Authors

This journal is committed to upholding the integrity of the scientific record. As a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) the journal will follow the COPE guidelines on how to deal with potential acts of misconduct.

Authors should refrain from misrepresenting research results that could damage the trust in the journal and ultimately the entire scientific endeavor. Maintaining integrity of the research and its presentation can be achieved by following the rules of good scientific practice, which includes:

  • The manuscript has not been submitted to more than one journal for simultaneous consideration.
  • The manuscript has not been published previously (partly or in full), unless the new work concerns an expansion of previous work (please provide transparency on the re-use of material to avoid the hint of text-recycling (“self- plagiarism”)).
  • A single study is not split up into several parts to increase the quantity of submissions and submitted to various journals or to one journal over time (e.g. “salami-publishing”).
  • No data have been fabricated or manipulated (including images) to support your conclusions
  • No data, text, or theories by others are presented as if they were the authors own (“plagiarism”). Proper acknowledgements to other works must be given (this includes material that is closely copied (near verbatim), summarized and/or paraphrased), quotation marks are used for verbatim copying of material, and permissions are secured for material that is copyrighted.
  • Important note: the journal may use software to screen for plagiarism.
  • Consent to submit has been received from all co-authors and responsible authorities at the institute/organization where the work has been carried out before the work is submitted.
  • Authors whose names appear on the submission have contributed sufficiently to the scientific work and therefore share collective responsibility and accountability for the results.
  • Changes of authorship or in the order of authors are not accepted after acceptance of a manuscript.
  • Requests to add or delete authors at revision stage or after publication is a serious matter, and may be considered only after receipt of written approval from all authors and detailed explanation about the role/deletion of the new/deleted author. The decision on accepting the change rests with the Editor-in-Chief of the journal.
  • Upon request authors should be prepared to send relevant documentation or data in order to verify the validity of the results. This could be in the form of raw data, samples,records, etc.
  • If there is a suspicion of misconduct,the journal will carry out an investigation following the COPE guidelines. If, after investigation,the allegation seems to raise valid concerns, the accused author will be contacted and given an opportunity to address the issue. If misconduct has been proven, this may result in the Editor-in-Chief’s implementation of the following measures, including, but not limited to:
    • If the article is still under consideration, it may be rejected and returned to the author.
    • If the article has already been published online, depending on the nature and severity of the infraction, either an erratum will be placed with the article or in severe cases complete retraction of the article will occur. The reason must be given in the published erratum or retraction note. The author’s institution may be informed.

Statement of Human and Animal Rights

When reporting studies that involve human participants, authors should include a statement that the studies have been approved by the appropriate institutional and/or national research ethics committee and have been performed in accordance with the ethical standards as laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration or comparable standards,the authors must explain the reasons for their approach, and demonstrate that the independent ethics committee or institutional review board explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study.

The following statements should be included in the text before the References section: Ethical approval: “All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.”

The welfare of animals used for research must be respected. When reporting experiments on animals, authors should indicate whether the institutional and/or national guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.

For studies with animals, the following statement should be included: “All applicable institutional and/or national guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.”

If articles do not contain studies with human participants or animals by any of the authors, Springer recommends including the following sentence: “This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.”

For retrospective studies, please add the following sentence: “For this type of study formal consent is not required.”

Informed Consent

All individuals have individual rights that are not to be infringed. Individual participants in studies e.g. have the right to decide what happens to the (identifiable) personal data gathered and to what they have said e.g. during a study or an interview as well as to any photograph that was taken. Hence it is important that all participants gave their informed consent in writing prior to inclusion in the study. Identifying details (names, dates of birth, identity numbers and other information) of the participants that were studied should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and genetic profiles unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the participant (or parent or guardian if the participant is incapable) has given written informed consent for publication. Complete anonymity is difficult to achieve in some cases, and informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of participants is inadequate protection of anonymity. If identifying characteristics are altered to protect anonymity,such as in genetic profiles, authors should provide assurance that alterations do not distort scientific meaning.

The following statement should be included: Informed consent: “Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.”

If identifying information about participants is available in the article, the following statement should be included: “Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.”

Reference Managers

For authors using EndNote, Springer provides an output style that supports the formatting of in-text citations and reference list here.

Authors preparing their manuscript in LaTeX can use the bibtex file spbasic.bst which is included in Springer’s LaTeX macro package (clicking this link downloads a file).

Reprints

Reprints are available to authors at standard rates. Authors will receive reprint order forms with proofs of articles. Both paper and PDF reprints can be purchased. You will receive a free electronic offprint in PDF format after online publication.

English Language Support

Manuscripts that are accepted for publication will be checked by our copy editors for spelling and formal style. This may not be sufficient if English is not your native language and substantial editing would be required. In that case, you may want to have your manuscript edited by a native speaker prior to submission. A clear and concise language will help editors and reviewers concentrate on the scientific content of your paper and thus smooth the peer review process.

Editing services provide language editing for scientific articles in all areas Springer publishes in. Use of an editing service is neither a requirement nor a guarantee of acceptance for publication. Two available options are SpringerNature Author Services and American Journal Experts. Please contact an editing service directly to make arrangements for editing and payment.