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About Critical Ultrasound Journal
This page includes information about the aims and scope of Critical Ultrasound Journal, editorial policies, open access and article-processing charges, the peer review process and other information. For details of how to prepare and submit a manuscript through the online submission system, please see the instructions for authors.
Aims & scope
Critical Ultrasound Journal is an international, peer-reviewed journal designed for clinicians using point-of-care ultrasound in any environment or setting.
Critical Ultrasound Journal is the official publication of WINFOCUS (World Interactive Network Focused on Critical UltraSound), the world's leading scientific organization committed to developing point-of-care ultrasound practice, research, education, technology and networking and addressing the global needs of patients, institutions, services and communities living in out-of-hospital and in-hospital critical scenarios.
The journal publishes editorials, reviews, original articles, short communications and case reports and is open for publication of supplements and abstracts of scientific meetings. By reaching audiences around the world, it plays a key role in bringing ultrasound to the patient's bedside, where this technique can make the greatest difference. Requirements and guidelines for submission of papers can be obtained from the publisher.
All articles published by Critical Ultrasound Journal are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication, without subscription charges or registration barriers. Further information about open access can be found here.
Authors of articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal are the copyright holders of their articles and have granted to any third party, in advance and in perpetuity, the right to use, reproduce or disseminate the article, according to the SpringerOpen copyright and license agreement.
For authors who are US government employees or are prevented from being copyright holders for similar reasons, BioMed Central can accommodate non-standard copyright lines. Please contact us if further information is needed.
Open access publishing is not without costs. Critical Ultrasound Journal therefore levies an article-processing charge of £1150/$1930/€1390 for each article accepted for publication. If the submitting author's institution is a Member, the cost of the article-processing charge is covered by the membership, and no further charge is payable. In the case of authors whose institutions are Supporter Members, however, a discounted article-processing charge is payable by the author. We routinely waive charges for authors from low-income countries. For other countries, article-processing charge waivers or discounts are granted on a case-by-case basis to authors with insufficient funds. Authors can request a waiver or discount during the submission process. For further details, see our article-processing charge page.
SpringerOpen is working closely with Thomson Reuters (ISI) to ensure that citation analysis of articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal will be available.
Publication and peer review process
Authors will be able to check the progress of their manuscript through the submission system at any time by logging into My Critical Ultrasound Journal, a personalized section of the site.
Portability of peer review
In order to support efficient and thorough peer review, we aim to reduce the number of times a manuscript is re-reviewed after rejection from Critical Ultrasound Journal, thereby speeding up the publication process and reducing the burden on peer reviewers. Therefore, please note that, if a manuscript is not accepted for publication in Critical Ultrasound Journal and the authors choose to submit a revised version to another SpringerOpen journal, we will pass the reviews on to the other journal's editors at the authors' request. We will reveal the reviewers' names to the handling editor for editorial purposes unless reviewers let us know when they return their report that they do not wish us to share their report with another SpringerOpen journal.
Copyediting and proofs
Critical Ultrasound Journal will copyedit manuscripts before they are published.
Following the acceptance of an article, it is published in Critical Ultrasound Journal as a provisional PDF file with minimal delay (subject to formatting checks, copyediting and author verification). Fully formatted PDF and full-text (HTML) versions are made available shortly after that.
Please see our reprints website for information about reprinting articles.
Critical Ultrasound Journal will consider supplements based on proceedings (full articles or meeting abstracts), reviews or research. All articles submitted for publication in supplements are subject to peer review. Published supplements are fully searchable and freely accessible online and can also be produced in print. All full length articles (proceedings, reviews or research articles) are indexed by PubMed. PubMed displays the title of the supplement only in the case of meeting abstract collections. For further information, please contact us.
Any manuscript, or substantial parts of it, submitted to the journal must not be under consideration by any other journal. In general, the manuscript should not have already been published in any journal or other citable form, although it may have been deposited on a preprint server. Authors are required to ensure that no material submitted as part of a manuscript infringes existing copyrights, or the rights of a third party.
Correspondence concerning articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal is encouraged. A 'post a comment' feature is available on all articles published by Critical Ultrasound Journal. Comments will be moderated by the editorial office (see our Comment policy for further information) and linked to the full-text version of the article, if suitable.
SpringerOpen is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and endorses the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME) Policy Statement on Geopolitical Intrusion on Editorial Decisions. In order to safeguard the quality of SpringerOpen journal publications, Springer has developed a policy on Publishing Integrity which is in line with the philosophy of COPE.
We follow the principle that we have a prime duty to maintain the integrity of the scientific record. Springer’s Policy on Publishing Integrity addresses:
- Clear definitions of what violation of Publishing Integrity is.
- A manual on how to identify such a violation (in the document referred to as an Act of Misconduct).
- Clear (COPE) examples of what such an Act of Misconduct looks like in practice.
- Clearly defined actions which have to be undertaken by the Editor and Springer when such an Act is a clearly proven fact.
- Q & A – a useful list of Questions and Answers on the definition of Publishing Integrity.
Please find the full document of Springer's Policy on Publishing Integrity here.
Submission of a manuscript to Critical Ultrasound Journal implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content, and that any experimental research that is reported in the manuscript has been performed with the approval of an appropriate ethics committee. Research carried out on humans must be in compliance with the Helsinki Declaration, and any experimental research on animals must follow internationally recognized guidelines. A statement to this effect must appear in the Methods section of the manuscript, including the name of the body which gave approval, with a reference number where appropriate. Informed consent must also be documented. Manuscripts may be rejected if the editorial office considers that the research has not been carried out within an ethical framework, e.g. if the severity of the experimental procedure is not justified by the value of the knowledge gained.
For all articles that include information or clinical photographs relating to individual patients, written and signed consent from each patient to publish must also be made available if requested by the editorial staff.
Critical Ultrasound Journal's publisher, Springer, has a legal responsibility to ensure that its journals do not publish material that infringes copyright, or that includes libellous or defamatory content. If, on review, your manuscript is perceived to contain potentially libellous content the journal Editors, with assistance from the publisher if required, will work with authors to ensure an appropriate outcome is reached.
The involvement of scientific (medical) writers or anyone else who assisted with the preparation of the manuscript content should be acknowledged, along with their source of funding, as described in the European Medical Writers Association (EMWA) guidelines on the role of medical writers in developing peer-reviewed publications. If medical writers are not listed among the authors, their role should be acknowledged explicitly.
Standards of reporting
Critical Ultrasound Journal supports initiatives aimed at improving the reporting of biomedical research. We recommend authors refer to the EQUATOR network website for further information on the available reporting guidelines for health research, and the MIBBI Portal for prescriptive checklists for reporting biological and biomedical research where applicable. Authors are requested to make use of these when drafting their manuscript and peer reviewers will also be asked to refer to these checklists when evaluating these studies. Checklists are available for a number of study designs, including randomized controlled trials (CONSORT), systematic reviews (PRISMA), observational studies (STROBE), meta-analyses of observational studies (MOOSE), diagnostic accuracy studies (STARD) and qualitative studies (RATS). For authors of systematic reviews, an additional file, linked from the Methods section, should reproduce all details concerning the search strategy. For an example of how a search strategy should be presented, see the Cochrane Reviewers' Handbook.
Standardised gene nomenclature should be used throughout. Human gene symbols and names can be found in the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee (HGNC) database and any enquiries, or requests for new gene symbols, should be directed via email to email@example.com. Nomenclature committees for other species are listed at http://www.genenames.org/about/faq#otherspecies. For mutation nomenclature please use the guidelines suggested by the Human Genome Variation Society.
Authors from pharmaceutical companies, or other commercial organizations that sponsor clinical trials, should adhere to the Good Publication Practice guidelines for pharmaceutical companies, which are designed to ensure that publications are produced in a responsible and ethical manner. The guidelines also apply to any companies or individuals that work on industry-sponsored publications, such as freelance writers, contract research organizations and communications companies.
Critical Ultrasound Journal also supports initiatives to improve the performance and reporting of trials, part of which includes prospective registering and numbering of clinical trials. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) has implemented the World Health Organisation (WHO) definition of clinical trials which states that a clinical trial is any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes. This definition includes phase I to Phase IV trials.
Authors of protocols or reports of such clinical trials, where the primary purpose of the research is to understand the causes, development and effects of disease or to improve preventative, diagnostic or therapeutic interventions, must register their trials prior to submission in a suitable publicly available registry. In addition to accepting registration in any of the five existing registries (http://www.icmje.org/faq.html), the ICMJE will accept registration of clinical trials in any of the primary registers that participate in the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform including the ISRCTN register administered by Current Controlled Trials, part of BioMed Central Group.
The trial registration number should be included as the last line of the manuscript abstract, and where possible the trial record’s persistent identifier should be cited in the manuscript’s reference list.
Data and materials release
Submission of a manuscript to Critical Ultrasound Journal implies that readily reproducible materials described in the manuscript, including all relevant raw data, will be freely available to any scientist wishing to use them for non-commercial purposes. Nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences, and atomic coordinates should be deposited in an appropriate database in time for the accession number to be included in the published article. In computational studies where the sequence information is unacceptable for inclusion in databases because of lack of experimental validation, the sequences must be published as an additional file with the article.
Any 'in press' articles cited within the references and necessary for the reviewers' assessment of the manuscript should be made available if requested by the editorial office.
Nucleotide sequences can be deposited with the DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL/EBI) Nucleotide Sequence Database, or GenBank (National Center for Biotechnology Information).
The accession numbers of any nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences or atomic coordinates cited in the manuscript should be provided, in square brackets with the corresponding database name; for example, [EMBL:AB026295, EMBL:AC137000, DDBJ:AE000812, GenBank:U49845, PDB:1BFM, Swiss-Prot:Q96KQ7, PIR:S66116].
The databases for which we can provide direct links are: EMBL Nucleotide Sequence Database (EMBL), DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), GenBank at the NCBI (GenBank), Protein Data Bank (PDB), Protein Information Resource (PIR) and the Swiss-Prot Protein Database (Swiss-Prot).
Mass spectrometry data should be supplied in the mzML format recommended by the HUPO Protein Standards Initiative Mass Spectrometry Standards Working Group guidelines (http://www.psidev.info/index.php?q=node/80). We also recommend that the data is deposited in the ProteomeExchange (http://proteomexchange.org/) through the PRIDE website (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/pride/), and protein interaction data can be submitted to members of the IMEx consortium (http://www.imexconsortium.org/submit-your-data).
Protein structures can be deposited with one of the members of the Worldwide Protein Data Bank. Nucleic Acids structures can be deposited with the Nucleic Acid Database at Rutgers. Crystal structures of organic compounds can be deposited with the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre.
Chemical structures and assays
Functional genomics data (such as microarray, RNA-seq or ChIP-seq data)
Where appropriate, authors should adhere to the standards proposed by the Functional Genomics Data Society and must deposit microarray data in MIAME-compliant format in one of the public repositories, such as ArrayExpress or Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). Deposition of high-throughput functional genomics sequencing data (such as RNA-Seq or ChIP-Seq data) with ArrayExpress or GEO in compliance with MINSEQE is also required.
We encourage authors to prepare models of biochemical reaction networks using the Systems Biology Markup Language and to deposit the model with the BioModels database, as well as submitting it as an additional file with the manuscript.
Appeals and complaints
Authors who wish to appeal a rejection or make a complaint should, in the first instance, contact the Editor-in-Chief who will provide details of the journal's complaints procedure.
Critical Ultrasound Journal requires authors to declare any competing financial or other interest in relation to their work. All competing interests that are declared will be listed at the end of published articles. Where an author gives no competing interests, the listing will read 'The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests'.
Critical Ultrasound Journal's publisher, SpringerOpen, is a member of the CrossCheck plagiarism detection initiative. In cases of suspected plagiarism CrossCheck is available to the editors of Critical Ultrasound Journal to detect instances of overlapping and similar text in submitted manuscripts by using the plagiarism detection tool iThenticate. CrossCheck is a multi-publisher initiative allowing screening of published and submitted content for originality.
Citing articles in Critical Ultrasound Journal
Articles in Critical Ultrasound Journal should be cited in the same way as articles in a traditional journal. Because articles are not printed, they do not have page numbers; instead, they are given a unique article number.
Article citations follow this format:
Authors: Title. Crit Ultrasound J [year], [volume number]:[article number].
e.g. Roberts LD, Hassall DG, Winegar DA, Haselden JN, Nicholls AW, Griffin JL: Increased hepatic oxidative metabolism distinguishes the action of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor delta from Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor gamma in the Ob/Ob mouse. Crit Ultrasound J 2009, 1:115.
refers to article 115 from Volume 1 of the journal.
Why publish your article in Critical Ultrasound Journal?
Critical Ultrasound Journal's open access policy allows maximum visibility of articles published in the journal as they are available to a wide, global audience. Articles that have been especially highly accessed are highlighted with a 'Highly accessed' graphic, which appears on the journal's contents pages and search results.
Speed of publication
Critical Ultrasound Journal offers a fast publication schedule whilst maintaining rigorous peer review; all articles must be submitted online, and peer review is managed fully electronically (articles are distributed in PDF form, which is automatically generated from the submitted files). Articles will be published with their final citation after acceptance, in both fully browsable web form, and as a formatted PDF; the article will then be available through Critical Ultrasound Journal, SpringerOpen and PubMed Central and will also be included in PubMed.
Online publication in Critical Ultrasound Journal gives authors the opportunity to publish large datasets, large numbers of color illustrations and moving pictures, to display data in a form that can be read directly by other software packages so as to allow readers to manipulate the data for themselves, and to create all relevant links (for example to relevant databases and papers).
Promotion and press coverage
Articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal are included in article alerts and regular email updates. Some may be included in abstract books mailed to academics and are highlighted on Critical Ultrasound Journal's pages and on the SpringerOpen homepage.
In addition, articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal may be promoted by press releases to the general or scientific press. These activities increase the exposure and number of accesses for articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal.
Authors of articles published in Critical Ultrasound Journal retain the copyright of their articles and are free to reproduce and disseminate their work (for further details, see the SpringerOpen copyright and license agreement).
For further information about the advantages of publishing in a journal from SpringerOpen, please click here.