Advertisement

Structured Abstracts

The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA) requires structured abstracts for original contributions and brief reports. Structured abstracts for systematic reviews and meta-analyses are also required.

All abstracts should be able to stand alone. Abstracts should reflect the information presented in the manuscript and should convey the principle points and findings, providing a quick "snippet" of the manuscript.

Original Contributions and Brief Reports

Structured abstracts for original contributions and brief reports should include, at minimum, the following 5 headings: "Context," "Objective," "Methods," "Results," and "Conclusion." Additional headings for these types of submissions may include "Design," "Setting," "Patients," "Interventions," and "Main Outcome Measures," as described below.

Context—A 1-sentence summary of the rationale for the study question.

Objective(s)—A 1-sentence description (eg, "To determine..." "To establish...") of the study's primary objective. Authors may choose to include key secondary objectives. Any a priori hypotheses used should be addressed.

Design—A statement of the study's basic design (eg, randomized controlled trial, double-blind, cohort, survey, cost-effectiveness analysis).

Setting—A 1-sentence description of the clinical circumstances of the setting (eg, general community, primary care center, hospitalized care).

Patients (or other participants)—A brief description of the key eligibility criteria of the study's participants. Numbers of the participants should also be included.

Interventions—A brief description of any interventions administered, if applicable.

Main Outcome Measure(s)—A brief description of the study's outcome measurements. If these measurements are not applicable to the study, authors should state so and briefly explain why. Authors are also responsible for stating here if the hypothesis was formed during or after the data collection.

Methods—A short paragraph discussing the design, setting, patients, and interventions (authors should include a methods heading only when the previously mentioned headings—"Design," "Setting," "Patients," "Interventions," and "Main Outcome Measure(s)"—are excluded from the abstract).

Results—A brief summary of the main results along with declarations and explanations of any important measurements. Authors should include the study's relevant statistical information (eg, confidence intervals, levels of statistical significance).

Conclusion—A brief summary of the study's conclusions directly supported by the reported evidence.

Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses

Structured abstracts for systematic reviews and meta-analyses should consist of "Objective," "Data Sources," "Study Selection," "Data Extraction," "Data Synthesis," and "Conclusion," as described below.

Objective—A brief statement (eg, "To determine..." "To establish...") of the study's primary objective. Authors should include specific information about the topic being reviewed (eg, outcome, population, prevention).

Data Sources—A brief description of the data sources used (eg, computerized databases, research institutions, bibliographic references). In the case that databases were used, authors should include any search constraints.

Study Selection—A statement of the criteria used for study selection. Authors should also identify the methods used to apply these criteria (eg, blind review).

Data Extraction—A brief description of the methods used for extracting data.

Data Synthesis—A brief description of the review's main results and how they were obtained. Authors should include the study's relevant statistical information (eg, confidence intervals, levels of statistical significance).

Conclusion—A brief summary of the study's conclusions directly supported by the reported evidence.

General Requirements

Structured abstracts are limited to 350 words, and unstructured abstracts are limited to 150 words.

Unstructured abstracts, which may include all the same information noted above but are not broken down into sections, are acceptable for all other types of submissions. In instances where manuscripts do not meet the criteria previously listed, "creative" structured abstracts are strongly encouraged.

Additional Resources 

AMA Manual of Style: A Guide for Authors and Editors. 10th ed. New York, NY: Oxford University Press; 2007.

Riordan L. Mastering the art of abstracts. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2015;115(1):41-45. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2015.006. 

[Updated March 17, 2015, LR]
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
×
×

This PDF is available to Subscribers Only

View Article Abstract & Purchase Options

Cancel

×