Malin Sund, Professor and Chief Physician in the Department of Surgical and Periopeartive Sciences at Umea University (Sweden), reviews the process of drafting a clinical paper, including the basics, the use of scientific English, how to divide the paper in sections, authorship rules, and revising and editing the manuscript.
Dr. Sund reviews the different types of clinical papers, from case reports to review articles, explaining the differences between them and their pros and cons. According to Dr. Sund, one of the main difficulties when starting to write a paper is being able to appreciate whether there is something worth publishing; in order to answer this question she recommends seeking advice from an experienced author, studying the feasibility of the study (money, time, etc), restricting the goal of the study to answering just one question, setting a title, and seeking statistical advice early.
Editors look for:
– Topical subjects.
– Good writing.
One important factor is where to publish the data. Authors should consider whether the target is the general public or an specialized public, the influence of the journal, and the speed of the editorial decision.
Tricks to write in scientific English including always stating the hypothesis of the study, explaining the novelty of the data, writing in a simple, focused style, and dividing the paper in sections with logically arranged contents in each of them, especially in the introduction and the discussion.