International Journal of STD & AIDS Guidelines for Authors


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These instructions comply with the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals formulated by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (for further details, see the ICMJE site)

1. Aims and scope
The International Journal of STD & AIDS is a peer-reviewed publication publishing clinically-oriented papers on both traditional sexually transmissible diseases (STDs) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), which contribute to the advancement of knowledge in these fields.

2. Editorial policy
Covering letter

The covering letter is important. To help the Editors in their preliminary evaluation, please indicate why you think the paper suitable for publication. If your paper should be considered for fast-track publication, please explain why.

Peer review

All papers will be reviewed by independent referees, and authors may be requested to amend their contribution. The final decision about acceptance or rejection remains with the Editors.
Papers on which the Editors are co-authors are handled by another member of the Editorial Board and are usually sent to at least two independent referees.

Ethical approval

All research submitted for publication must be approved by an ethics committee.

Patient consent

Any article containing identifiable patient information must be accompanied by a statement of consent to publication.
If there is any doubt about whether or not information is identifiable, the Editors are happy to discuss this before an article is submitted.
Reviewers will also be asked to take careful account of issues relating to patient confidentiality when reviewing articles.

Case studies are not the only kinds of article to which this rule will be applied, but they will be subject to additional scrutiny.
Not only should submissions be accompanied by a statement of consent, but the Editors also expect to be informed about the measures that have been taken to anonymise the details that could have led to parties being identified.
They also reserve the right to work with the authors to make additional anonymising changes as they or the reviewers see fit.
The Editors may also ask authors to remove personal information that, whilst interesting and colourful, does not add to the substance of an article, but does increase the likelihood of parties being identified.
The exception to this will be where the patient has indicated in writing that she/he wants to be identified, has read the material, has discussed the consequences of being identified and has agreed to the disclosure of all the personal information contained in the article.

In order to ensure that valuable and novel issues are aired, the Editors will sometimes consider publishing case studies that contain potentially identifiable information where it has been impossible or clearly undesirable to seek consent from relevant parties.
However, given the strong preference for consent having been sought and obtained the reasons for not seeking consent must be compelling, and the public interest arguments for publishing the case must be powerful.
In cases where consent has not been obtained, the authors must provide a statement from a Medical Director or equivalent that the hospital or medical centre is happy for the case to be published.

Competing interests and other declarations

All authors are required to declare any conflicts of interest when submitting papers for publication.
Declarations of funding sources, a guarantor and a statement of contributorship are also required.


All previously published material must be accompanied by the written consent to reproduction of the copyright holder.
An acknowledgement of permission should be included at the relevant point in the paper, and a full reference to the original place of publication should be included in the reference list.


Authors of accepted manuscripts will be required to allocate copyright to the publisher prior to publication.


Only the help of those who have made substantial contributions to the study and/or the preparation of the paper should be acknowledged.

3. Types of articles

When assessing the length of your contribution, allow 250 words for each table, figure or group of eight references, since all of these will contribute to its total length.


Suggestions for review articles are welcomed by the Editors and the subject matter should be outlined to the Editors, if possible before writing the article.
Maximum length: 3500 words, with up to five tables or illustrations.

Original Research Articles

These are expected to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the field of STD and AIDS.
Maximum length: 3000 words, with up to five tables or illustrations.

Case Reports

These should be prepared in a narrative style and comprise a summary; a short introduction stating the reasons for reporting the case; the case report including history, investigations and treatment; and a discussion referring to the relevant literature.
Maximum length 800 words with 1–2 tables or illustrations.

Audit Reports

These should be prepared in a narrative style and comprise a short summary, introduction, methods, results and discussion.
Maximum length 800 words with 1–2 tables or illustrations.

Letters to the Editor

These should relate to articles published recently in the journal.
Letters are usually less than 500 words.

4. How to submit a manuscript
Only manuscripts submitted via the online manuscript submission and peer review site, which can be found at will be considered for publication.

All submissions must be in English.

Tables and figures may be submitted as separate files, in which case the files should be uploaded in the following order: (1) main text, including title page, abstract and references; (2) tables; (3) figures; (4) supplementary files; and (5) author proforma.

File formats

Text files must be saved in .doc or .rtf format. Other suitable formats include .tif for photographic images, .xls for graphs produced in Excel, and .eps for other line drawings.

5. How to prepare a manuscript

Manuscripts must be submitted using double line-spaced, unjustified text throughout, with headings and subheadings in bold case. Press ‘Enter’ only at the end of a paragraph, list entry or heading.

Title page

The first page should contain the full title of the manuscript, a short title, the author(s) name(s) and affiliation(s), and the name, postal and email addresses of the author for correspondence, as well as a full list of declarations.

The title should be concise and informative, accurately indicating the content of the article. The short title should be no more than six words long.


A summary of no more than 150 words must accompany all submissions.
The summary should state the main purposes of the study, the basic procedures used and the most important conclusions drawn; numerical data should be included.
Letters to the Editor do not require an abstract.


Tables must be prepared using the Table feature of the word processor. Tables should not duplicate information given in the text, should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text and should be given a brief title.


All figures should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text. All figures must be accompanied by a figure legend. If figures are supplied in separate files, the figure legends must all be listed at the end of the main text file.

Line drawings should be produced electronically and clearly labelled using a sans serif font such as Arial. Graphs may be supplied as Excel spreadsheets (one per sheet). Other line drawings should be supplied in a suitable vector graphic file format (e.g. .eps)

All photographic images should be submitted in camera-ready form (i.e. with all extraneous areas removed) and, where necessary, magnification should be shown using a scale marker. Photographic images must be supplied at high resolution, preferably 600 dpi. Images supplied at less than 300 dpi are unsuitable for print and will delay publication. The preferred file format is .tif.


Only essential references should be included. Authors are responsible for verifying them against the original source material. RSM Press uses the Vancouver referencing system: references should be identified in the text by superscript Arabic numerals after any punctuation, and numbered and listed at the end of the paper in the order in which they are first cited in the text. Automatic numbering should be avoided. References should include the names and initials of up to six authors. If there are more than six authors, only the first three should be named, followed by et al. Publications for which no author is apparent may be attributed to the organization from which they originate. Simply omit the name of the author for anonymous journal articles – avoid using ’Anonymous’. Punctuation in references should be kept to a minimum, as shown in the following examples:

  1. Chen MY, Ryder N, Donovan B. Completeness and timelines of treatment for Chlamydia within a sexual health service. Int J STD AIDS 2004;15:762-4
  2. Baron DN, ed. Units, Symbols, and Abbreviations. A Guide for Medical and Scientific Editors and Authors. 5th edn. London: Royal Society of Medicine Press, 1994
  3. Medical Foundation for AIDS and Sexual Health. Standards for NHS HIV Services., December 2002 (last accessed 23-01-2008)


Symbols and abbreviations should be those currently in use. Authors should not create new abbreviations and acronyms. The RSM’s book Units, Symbols and Abbreviations provides lists of approved abbreviations.


All measurements should be expressed in SI units.


If preparing statistical data for publication, please read the statistical guidelines.

6. Proofs and eprints
Proofs will be sent by email to the designated corresponding author as a PDF file attachment and should be corrected and returned promptly; corrections should be kept to a minimum.

A PDF eprint of each published article will be supplied free of charge to the author for correspondence; hardcopy offprints may be ordered from the publisher when the proofs are returned.