Submission Preparation Checklist
As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
- The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
- The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, or RTF document file format.
- Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
- The text is single-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
- The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines.
The Editorial Process and policy: A manuscript will be reviewed for possible publication with the understanding that it is being submitted to Nigerian Medical Journal alone then and has not been published anywhere, simultaneously submitted, or already accepted for publication elsewhere. The journal expects that authors would authorize one of them to correspond with the Journal for all matters related to the manuscript. All manuscripts received are duly acknowledged. On submission, editors review all submitted manuscripts initially for suitability for formal review. Manuscripts with insufficient originality, serious scientific or technical flaws or lack of a significant message are rejected before proceeding for formal peer-review. Manuscripts that are unlikely to be of interest to the Nigerian Medical Journal readers are also liable to be rejected at this stage itself.
Manuscripts that are found suitable for publication in Nigerian Medical Journal are sent to two or more expert reviewers. During submission, the contributor is requested to provide names of two or three qualified reviewers who have had experience in the subject of the submitted manuscript. The reviewers should not be affiliated with the same institute/s as the contributor/s. However, the selection of these reviewers is at the sole discretion of the editor. The journal follows a double-blind review process, wherein the reviewers and authors are unaware of each other’s identity. The comments and suggestions (acceptance/ rejection/ amendments in the manuscript) received from reviewers are conveyed to the corresponding author. If required, the author is requested to provide a point-by-point response to reviewers’ comments and submit a revised version of the manuscript. This process is repeated till reviewers and editors are satisfied with the manuscript.
Manuscripts accepted for publication are copy edited for grammar, punctuation, print style, and format. Page proofs are sent to the corresponding author. The corresponding author is expected to return the corrected proofs within the stipulated period. The whole process of submission of the manuscript to the final decision and sending and receiving proofs is completed online. To achieve faster and greater dissemination of knowledge and information, the journal publishes articles online as 'Ahead of Print' immediately upon acceptance.
Article Processing Charge: The NMJ does not charge publication fees for manuscripts. In line with the open access policy of the journal, published manuscripts are also accessible online at no cost to users who agree to the creative commons copyright policies. To support the open access policy of the journal, authors are required to pay an article processing fee of US$150.00 only at the point of submission to sustain article administrative processes. No additional fees are charged on the acceptance of an article for publication.
Corrections, Retractions, Republications, Version Control & Misconduct:
The NMJ follows the ICMJE and COPE recommendations and guidance in handling corrections, retractions, editorial expressions of concern and misconduct - https://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/publishing-and-editorial-issues/corrections-and-version-control.html & https://publicationethics.org/guidance/Flowcharts. Authors should review these requirements and ensure adherence to the highest standards of publication ethics in submitting their manuscripts to the NMJ.
Clinical trial registry: Nigerian Medical Journal would publish clinical trials that have been registered following the ICMJE requirements and recommendations - http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/publishing-and-editorial-issues/clinical-trial-registration.html. Clinical trials should be registered in a public trials registry at or before the time of first patient enrollment as a condition of consideration for publication. Clinical trials that have commenced enrollment of subjects before June 2008 would be considered for publication in Nigerian Medical Journal only if they have been registered retrospectively with a clinical trial registry that allows unhindered online access to the public without charging any fees.
Eligibility as an Author: NMJ follows the recommendation of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) for eligibility to be considered as an author for submitted papers. The ICMJE recommends that authorship be based on the following four (4) criteria:
- Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
- Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
- Final approval of the version to be published; AND
- Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
Participation solely in the acquisition of funding or the collection of data does not justify authorship. General supervision of the research group is not sufficient for authorship. Each contributor should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content of the manuscript. The order of naming the contributors should be based on the relative contribution of the contributor towards the study and writing of the manuscript. Once submitted, the order cannot be changed without the written consent of all the contributors. Authors should ensure compliance with the above guidelines, as manuscripts considered to have a gift or unjustified authorships will be rejected.
Contributors should describe contributions made by each of them towards the manuscript. The description should be divided into the following categories, as applicable: concept, design, the definition of intellectual content, literature search, clinical studies, experimental studies, data acquisition, data analysis, statistical analysis, manuscript preparation, manuscript editing and manuscript review. One or more authors should take responsibility for the integrity of the work as a whole from inception to published article and should be designated as 'guarantors'.
Conflicts of Interest/ Competing Interests: All authors must disclose all conflicts of interest they may have with the publication of the manuscript or an institution or product that is mentioned in the manuscript and/or is important to the outcome of the study presented. Authors should also disclose conflicts of interest with products that compete with those mentioned in their manuscript.
Informed Consent, Human and Animal Rights Policy
Research manuscripts submitted for publication must be approved by an appropriate ethics committee or institutional review board. Compliance with ethical considerations such as informed consent and respect for privacy must be ensured in the conduct of research and presentation of materials for publications, including images related to individual participants. Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki, the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences (CIOMS) bioethics policies and other relevant National regulations In the conduct of research involving animals, authors must also fulfil institutional, national, or international guidelines and codes. The editor may reject and or contact the author(s)’ ethics committee if there was suspicion of any work that was not carried out within an appropriate ethical framework.
Submission of Manuscripts
All manuscripts must be submitted online through the website https://nigerianmedjournal.org/. First-time users will have to register at this site. Registration is free but mandatory. The submitted manuscripts that are not as per the "Instructions to Authors" would be returned to the authors for technical correction before they undergo editorial/peer review. Generally, the manuscript should be submitted in the form of three separate files and other supplementary materials (e.g. images, etc.):
 Title Page/First Page File/covering letter:
This file should provide
- The type of manuscript (original article, case report, review article, Letter to editor, Images, etc.), title of the manuscript, running title, names of all authors/ contributors (with their highest academic degrees, designation and affiliations) and name(s) of the department(s) and/ or institution(s) to which the work should be credited. All information that can reveal your identity should be here. Use text/RTF/doc files. Do not zip the files.
- The total number of pages, the total number of photographs and word counts separately for the abstract and for the text (excluding the references, tables and abstract), word counts for introduction + discussion in case of an original article;
- Source(s) of support in the form of grants, equipment, drugs, or all of these;
- Acknowledgement, if any. One or more statements should specify 1) contributions that need acknowledging but do not justify authorship, such as general support by a departmental chair; 2) acknowledgements of technical help; and 3) acknowledgements of financial and material support, which should specify the nature of the support. This should be included in the title page of the manuscript and not in the main article file.
- If the manuscript was presented as part of a meeting, the organization, place, and exact date on which it was read. A full statement to the editor about all submissions and previous reports that might be regarded as redundant publications of the same or very similar work. Any such work should be referred to specifically and referenced in the new paper. Copies of such material should be included with the submitted paper to help the editor decide how to handle the matter.
- Registration number in case of a clinical trial and where it is registered (name of the registry and its URL). In the case of a systematic review, the evidence of protocol registration stating the name of the registry, the URL and the number where appropriate.
- Conflicts of Interest of each author/ contributor. A statement of financial or other relationships that might lead to a conflict of interest, if that information is not included in the manuscript itself or an author's form
- Criteria for inclusion in the authors’/ contributors’ list
- A statement that the manuscript has been read and approved by all the authors, that the requirements for authorship as stated earlier in this document have been met, and that each author believes that the manuscript represents honest work if that information is not provided in another form (see below); and
- The name, address, e-mail, and telephone number of the corresponding author, who is responsible for communicating with the other authors about revisions and final approval of the proofs if that information is not included in the manuscript itself.
 Blinded Article file: The main text of the article, beginning from Abstract till References (including tables) should be in this file. The file must not contain any mention of the authors' names or initials or the institution at which the study was done, or acknowledgements. Page headers/running titles can include the title but not the authors' names. Manuscripts not in compliance with the Journal's blinding policy will be returned to the corresponding author. Use RTF/doc files. Do not zip the files. Limit the file size to 1 MB. The pages should be numbered consecutively, beginning with the first page of the blinded article file.
 Non-blinded article file: with the full contents inclusive of names and institutions at which the study was done or acknowledgements.
 Images: Submit good-quality colour images. Each image should be less than 4 MB in size. The size of the image can be reduced by decreasing the actual height and width of the images (keep it up to 1800 x 1200 pixels or 5-6 inches). Images can be submitted as jpeg files. Do not zip the files. Legends for the figures/images should be included at the end of the article file.
The specific instructions for each type of manuscript are stated in the specific sections for the manuscript type.
Referencing guide: The NMJ follows the Vancouver style of referencing. It is a numbered referencing style commonly used in medicine and science and consists of: citations to someone else's work in the text, indicated by the use of a number and a sequentially numbered reference list at the end of the document providing full details of the corresponding in-text reference. It follows the guidelines provided in the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals. References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text (not in alphabetic order). Identify references in text, tables, and legends by Arabic numerals in superscript with square brackets after the punctuation marks. References cited only in tables, or figure legends should be numbered following the sequence established by the first identification in the text of the particular table or figure.
Authors are responsible for the accuracy of cited references, and these should be checked before the manuscript is submitted. The Journal names should be abbreviated according to the style used in the Index Medicus. Use the complete name of the journal for non-indexed journals.
Articles published as abstracts only should not be used as references; Information from manuscripts submitted but not accepted should be cited in the text as "unpublished observations" with written permission from the source and should not be in the reference list. Avoid citing a "personal communication" unless it provides essential information not available from a public source, in which case the name of the person and date of communication should be cited in parentheses in the text.
All references must be verified by the author(s) against the original documents. List all authors when six or fewer; when seven or more, list only the first six and add et al. Examples of correct forms of references are given below:
Example references Journals:
The commonly cited types of references are shown here; for other types of references, such as newspaper items, please refer to ICMJE Guidelines (http://www.icmje.org or http://www.nlm.nih.gov/bsd/uniform_requirements.html).
Articles in Journals
- Standard journal article (for up to six authors): Parija S C, Ravinder PT, Shariff M. Detection of hydatid antigen in the fluid samples from hydatid cysts by co-agglutination. Trans. R.Soc. Trop. Med. Hyg.1996; 90:255–256.
- Standard journal article (for more than six authors): List the first six contributors followed by et al.
Roddy P, Goiri J, Flevaud L, Palma PP, Morote S, Lima N. et al., Field Evaluation of a Rapid Immunochromatographic Assay for Detection of Trypanosoma cruzi Infection by Use of Whole Blood. J. Clin. Microbiol. 2008; 46: 2022-2027.
Books and Other Monographs:
- Personal Author(s)
Goodman NW, Edwards MB. 2014. Medical Writing: A Prescription for Clarity. 4th Edition. Cambridge University Press.
- Chapter in Book
McFarland D, Holland JC. Distress, adjustments, and anxiety disorders. In: Watson M, Kissane D, Editors. Management of clinical depression and anxiety. Oxford University Press; 2017: 1-22.
- Corporate Author
World Health Organization, Geneva. 2019. WHO Study Group on Tobacco Product Regulation. Report on the scientific basis of tobacco product regulation: seventh report of a WHO study group. WHO Technical Report Series, No. 1015.
Institute for Public Health. National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) 2017: Adolescent Health Survey 2017. Jaraban: Institute for Public Health, Ministry of Health Jaraban; 2017.
- Agency Publication
National Care for Health Statistics. Acute conditions: incidence and associated disability, United States, July 1968 - June 1969. Rockville, Me: National Centre for Health Statistics, 1972. (Vital and health statistics). Series 10: data from the National Health Survey, No 69). (DHEW Publication No (HSM) 72 - 1036).
- Webpage: Webpages are referenced with their URL and access date, and as much other information as is available. The cited date is important as the webpage can be updated and URLs change. The "cited" should contain the month and year accessed.
Ministry of Health and Population Eberia. Press Release: Status of preparedness and response by the ministry of health in and event of an outbreak of Ebola in Eberia 2014 [cited Dec 2014]. Available from:
Kaos J. 40°C threshold for 'heatwave emergency' Jalabad: The Star Nalaysia; [updated 18 March 2016, cited March 2016]. Available from: http://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2016/03/18/heatwave-emergency- threshold/.
- Newspaper Article
Panirchellvum V. 'No outdoor activities if weather too hot'. the Sun. 2016; March 18: 9(col. 1-3).
- Magazine Article
Thirunavukarasu R. Survey - Landscape of GP services and health economics in Yerian. Securitas MMA. 2016; March: 20-1.
Tables and illustrations: Roman numerals should be used for numbering tables (e.g., Table I, Table II, Table III). Arabic numerals should be used when numbering illustrations and diagrams (e.g., Figure 1, Figure 2, Figure 3). Illustrations and tables should be kept to a minimum.
All tables, illustrations and diagrams should be fully labelled so that each is comprehensible without reference to the text. All measurements should be reported using the metric system.
Each table should be typed on a separate sheet of paper, double-spaced and numbered consecutively. Omit the internal horizontal and vertical rules. The contents of all tables should be carefully checked to ensure that all totals and subtotals tally.
- Tables should be self-explanatory and should not duplicate textual material.
- Tables with more than 10 columns and 25 rows are not acceptable.
- Number tables, in Arabic numerals, consecutively in the order of their first citation in the text and supply a brief title for each.
- Place explanatory matter in the footnotes, not in the heading.
- Explain in the footnotes all non-standard abbreviations that are used in each table.
- Obtain permission for all fully borrowed, adapted, and modified tables and provide a credit line in the footnote.
- For footnotes, use the following symbols in this sequence: *, †, ‡, §, ||,¶, **, ††, ‡‡
- Tables with their legends should be provided at the end of the text after the references. The tables, along with their number, should be cited at the relevant place in the text.
Photographs of Patients:
Proof of permission and/or consent from the patient or legal guardian must be submitted with the manuscript. A statement on this must be included as a footnote to the relevant photograph.
- Upload the images in JPEG format. The file size should be within 4 MB in size while uploading.
- Figures should be numbered consecutively according to the order in which they have been first cited in the text.
- Labels, numbers, and symbols should be clear and of uniform size. The lettering for figures should be large enough to be legible after reduction to fit the width of a printed column.
- Symbols, arrows, or letters used in photomicrographs should contrast with the background and should be marked neatly with transfer type or by tissue overlay and not by pen.
- Titles and detailed explanations belong in the legends for illustrations not on the illustrations themselves.
- When graphs, scattergrams or histograms are submitted, the numerical data on which they are based should also be supplied.
- The photographs and figures should be trimmed to remove all the unwanted areas.
- If photographs of individuals are used, their pictures must be accompanied by written permission to use the photograph.
- If a figure has been published elsewhere, acknowledge the source and submit written permission from the copyright holder to reproduce the material. A credit line should appear in the legend for such figures.
- Legends for illustrations: Type or print out legends (maximum 40 words, excluding the credit line) for illustrations using double spacing, with Arabic numerals corresponding to the illustrations. When symbols, arrows, numbers, or letters are used to identify parts of the illustrations, identify and explain each one in the legend. Explain the internal scale (magnification) and identify the method of staining in photomicrographs.
- Final figures for print production: If the uploaded images are not printable quality, the publisher's office may request higher resolution images which can be sent at the time of acceptance of the manuscript. Send sharp, glossy, un-mounted, colour photographic prints with a height of 4 inches and width of 6 inches at the time of submitting the revised manuscript.
- The Journal reserves the right to crop, rotate, reduce, or enlarge the photographs to an acceptable size.
Protection of Patients' Rights to Privacy: Identifying information should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, sonograms, CT scans, etc., and pedigrees unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the patient (or parent or guardian, wherever applicable) gives informed consent for publication. Authors should remove patients' names from figures unless they have obtained informed consent from the patients. The journal abides by ICMJE guidelines:
1) Authors, not the journals nor the publisher, need to obtain the patient consent form before the publication and have the form properly archived. The consent forms are not to be uploaded with the cover letter or sent through email to editorial or publisher offices.
2) If the manuscript contains patient images that preclude anonymity or a description that has an obvious indication of the identity of the patient, a statement about obtaining informed patient consent should be indicated in the manuscript.
Abbreviations: Use only standard abbreviations. The full term for which an abbreviation stands should precede its first use in the abstract, article text, tables, and figures unless it is a standard unit of measurement. Abbreviations shall not be used in the Title. Abbreviations should be kept to a minimum.
Formatting of text: Numbers one to ten in the text are written out in words unless they are used as a unit of measurement, except in tables and figures. Use single hard returns to separate paragraphs. Do not use tabs or indents to start a paragraph. Do not use the automated formatting of your software, such as hyphenation, endnotes, headers, or footers (especially for references). Submit the Manuscript in plain text only, and remove all 'field codes' before submission. Do not include line numbers. Include only the page number.
Sending a revised manuscript: The revised version of the manuscript should be submitted online like that used for submission of the manuscript for the first time. However, there is no need to submit the "First Page" or "Covering Letter" file while submitting a revised version. When submitting a revised manuscript, contributors are requested to include the 'referees' remarks along with point-to-point clarification at the beginning of the revised file itself. In addition, they are expected to mark the changes as underlined or coloured text in the article.
- Signed by all contributors
- Previous publications/presentations mentioned
- The Source of funding mentioned
- Conflicts of interest disclosed
- Last name and given name provided along with Middle name initials (where applicable)
- Author for correspondence, with the e-mail address provided
- The number of contributors is restricted as per the instructions
Presentation and format
- Double spacing
- Margins 2.5 cm from all four sides
- Page numbers included at the bottom
- The title page contains all the desired information
- Running title provided (not more than 50 characters)
- The abstract page contains the full title of the manuscript
- Abstract provided (structured abstract of 300 words for original articles, unstructured abstracts of about 300 words for all other manuscripts, excluding letters to the Editor)
- Keywords provided (three or more)
- Introduction of 75-100 words
- Headings in title case (not ALL CAPITALS)
- The references cited in the text should be after punctuation marks, in superscript with a square bracket.
- References according to the journal's instructions, punctuation marks checked.
- Send the article file without ‘Track Changes
Language and grammar
- Uniformly British English
- Write the full term for each abbreviation at its first use in the title, abstract, keywords and text separately unless it is a standard unit of measure. Numerals from 1 to 10 are spelt out
- Numerals at the beginning of the sentence are spelt out
- Check the manuscript for spelling, grammar and punctuation errors
- If a brand name is cited, supply the manufacturer's name and address (city and state/country).
- Species names should be in italics
Tables and figures
- No repetition of data in tables and graphs and text
- Actual numbers from which graphs are drawn provided
- Figures necessary and of good quality (colour)
- Table and figure numbers in Arabic letters (not Roman)
Figure legends provided (not more than 40 words)
- Patients' privacy maintained (if not permission taken)
- A credit note for borrowed figures/tables provided
- Write the full term for each abbreviation used in the table as a footnote.
Copyrights: The entire contents of the Nigerian Medical Journal are protected under Nigerian and international copyrights. The Journal is owned, published and copyrighted by the Nigerian Medical Association. The copyright of papers published is vested in the journal and the publisher. In submitting manuscripts to the Nigerian Medical Journal, authors agree to transfer all rights incidental thereto exclusively to the Journal in the event that such work is published by the Journal. In line with our open access policy and the creative commons, attribution license authors are allowed to share their work with an acknowledgement of their authorship and initial publication in this journal. The NMJ also supports open-access archiving of articles published in the journal after three months of publication. Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) within the stated period, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work.
The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.
The Nigerian Medical Journal is a publication of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), which operates www.nigerianmedjournal.org ('our Site'). NMA and NMJ are committed to protecting the privacy of your personal information.
Protecting your privacy is one of our top priorities. We have created a document to help you to understand our views and practices regarding your data and how we will treat it.
What Personal Information Do We Collect?
The type of personal information we collect usually includes but may not be limited to information required for your roles as authors, reviewers, readers or viewers or advertisers registered on the website in the course of your relationship with us and the Services we deliver to you. To that end, we may collect the following personal information about you:
- Name and contact details, such as, first and last name, highest degree, the field of practice, email address, postal address, telephone number
- Work-related information, such as job title and other employment or education information
- Account Credentials, such as passwords and other security information for authentication and access
- Financial Information, such as bank account, credit and debit card numbers for processing of payments
- Computer, device and connection information, such as IP address, browser type and version and location
How We Use Your Personal Information
Personal information collected is used for the purposes for which you have provided it and might be further used for statutory or other legitimate purposes only. As an example, if you make use of our service contact form on our website, we will use the information you provided in the first place to respond to your service request. We might further use that information to improve the quality of our customer service process. The lawfulness of the processing is one of the main principles relating to the processing of your personal information – we apply the following legal processing grounds:
- Processing is necessary for the performance of a contract or to take steps before entering into a contract;
- Processing is necessary for our legitimate interests – for example, to improve the quality of our products and services;
- Processing is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation to which we are subject or that is otherwise lawful under applicable data protection laws; with your given consent.
How Long Do We Keep Your Personal Information?
Your personal information will be processed to the extent necessary for the performance of our obligations, and for the time necessary to achieve the purposes for which the information is collected, following our data retention policies and applicable data protection laws. When we no longer need your personal information, we will take all reasonable steps to remove it from our systems and records or take steps to properly anonymize it so that you can no longer be identified from it.
How Do We Protect Your Personal Information?
We have put in place an internal framework of policies and minimum standards across all our services and processes to keep your data safe. In addition, we limit access to personal information by our employees, business partners, service providers and third-party service providers to a 'need-to-know' basis. More specifically and following the law, we take appropriate technical and organizational measures (policies and procedures, IT security, and others) to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of your personal information and the way it is processed.
The Nigerian Medical Association and NMJ collect information that your browser sends whenever you visit our Site. This may include information such as your computer's Internet Protocol ("IP") address, browser type, browser version, pages of our Site that you visit, time and date of your visit, time spent on those pages and other statistics. In addition, third party services such as Google Analytics may be used to collect, monitor and analyse this data
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Data Protection Officer, Nigerian Medical Journal
Nigerian Medical Association
42 Benghazi Street, Wuse Zone 2
Abuja – FCT – Nigeria