For Authors

For Authors

  1. Aim

The Ethiopian Medical Journal (EMJ) is an open-access, double-blind peer-reviewed medical journal publishing scientifically valued and influential research outputs in the area of clinical medicine, conventional modern medicine, biomedical research, Preventive Medicine, traditional medicine, and other related research in the broad area of Medicine. Prospective contributors to the Journal should take note of the instructions for manuscript preparation and submission to EMJ as outlined below.

  1. Article types acceptable by EMJ

- Original Articles (vide infra) on experimental and observational studies with clinical relevance

- Systematic Review and/or Meta-Analysis, and other review articles

- Brief Communications

- Case Series

- Case Reports

- Editorial Teaching Articles: by invitation of the Editorial Board.

- Book reviews

- Perspectives

- Policy Briefs

- Monographs or sets of articles on specific themes appearing in Special Issues of the Journal

- Correspondences/Letters to the Editor

- Viewpoints

- Hypothesis or discussion of an issue important to medical practice

- Commentaries

- Obituaries

N.B. Articles are not acceptable if previously published or submitted elsewhere in print or electronic format, except in the form of abstracts in proceedings of conferences or as pre-prints.

III. General content and format of the manuscripts- Common to all types of manuscripts

File format: Manuscripts should be submitted in Microsoft Word (DOC, DOCX) format only

Word count: Refer to the word count for each type of article

Font: Use standard Times New Roman, 12-point font, for texts and use the Insert Symbol function in the word processor to insert symbols. Also, use Microsoft's Insert Equation function to put any equations used in the manuscript.

Headings levels: Use a maximum of 3 heading levels throughout the manuscript

Line number, spacing, and page number: All lines should be numbered. Manuscript text should be single-spaced under the abstract and 1.5 in the other parts. Do not use multiple columns while preparing the manuscript. Put page numbers sequentially starting from the title page.

Footnotes: Avoid using footnotes as much as possible and if it is mandatory, put them in the text or the reference list accordingly.

Language: We only accept articles written in English

Abbreviations: Define abbreviations upon first use and minimize use of abbreviations as much as possible

References style: EMJ follows the Vancouver style according to ICMJ reference samples

Title: The title should not have acronyms or abbreviations. The title should be descriptive and should not exceed a maximum of 25 words or 120 characters including space. The title page should include the name(s) and qualification of the author(s); the department or Institution to which the study/research is attributed and the address of the corresponding Author. The article type should be mentioned on the title page at the topmost left just above the title. 

The Metric system of weights and measures must be used; temperature is indicated in degrees Centigrade.

Generic names should be used for drugs, followed by proprietary brand names; the manufacturer name in parenthesis, e.g. diazepam (Valium, Roche UK)

Statistical estimates e.g. mean, median proportions, and percentages should be given to one decimal place; standard deviations, odds ratios, or relative risks and confidence intervals to two decimal places.

Use the binomial nomenclature, reference to a bacterium must be given in full and underlined - underlining in typescript becomes italics in print (e.g. Hemophilus influenza), and later reference may show a capitalized initial for the genus (e.g.  influenza)

It is the author's responsibility to proofread the typescript or off-print before submitting or re-submitting it to the Journal and to ensure that the spelling and numerals in the text and tables are accurate.

The article type should be mentioned on the title page at the topmost left just above the title

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with journal requirements

  1. Specific organization and formatting of manuscripts                                                              Original/Research Articles

    a). Organization: Original/Research article should be organized with the following sections sequentially:

Title page



Materials and Methods






Ethics consideration

Consent to publish

Authors’ contribution

Conflict of interest


Data availability


     b). Word count: 2,500 words, excluding Abstracts, References, Figures, and Tables. 

     c). Article headings: The manuscript of the Article should appear under the following headings:

Abstract: The structured abstract of the Article should be submitted along with the manuscript and the word count should not exceed 300 words. Briefly summarize the essential features of the research under the following headings, respectively. a) Background; b) Methods; c) Results; d) Conclusions. Mention the problem being addressed in the study; how the study was conducted; the statistical methods used, the results, and the conclusion reached from the results.   Do not use references in the abstract section.

Keywords: Provide three to six keywords or short phrases at the end of the abstract page. Separate the keywords using a semicolon. Use terms from the medical subject heading of Index Medicus to assist in cross-indexing the Article.

Background: Should provide a short introduction and context of the study, problem statement, and  the rationale for doing the study. It should not be a detailed review of the subject and should not include conclusions from the paper.

Materials or (Patients) and Methods: Should contain details about study settings, study design, study population, sample size determination, sampling procedures, data collection and management, the statistical analysis used, and other relevant information to enable reproducibility of the study by others. 

Results: This section should present the detailed findings of the study using text, tables, or figures. Avoid repeating data from tables and figures in the text. 

Discussion: The first paragraph should provide a summary of key findings that will then be discussed one by one in the paragraphs to follow. The discussion should focus on the interpretation and significance of the results of the study with comments that compare and describe their relation to the work of others (with references) on the topic. Make sure the strengths and limitations of the study are clearly stated. Make sure the information in the results section is not repeated in here. 


This section should provide a summary of the key findings of the study in a concise and clear manner, provide a result-driven answer to the research question and recommendation, and avoid overgeneralization or unjustified claims.


Acknowledgement: Appropriate recognition of contributors to the research, not included under Authors should be mentioned here; also add a note about the source of the financial support or research funding, when applicable.

Ethics consideration 

This section must contain the full name of the Ethics review committee (ERC) or Institutional review Board (IRB) which approved the study and also provide the approval letter reference number during initial submission. If requested by reviewers or editorial board during the review process, authors must also upload a scanned copy of the ethical clearance letter. The section must include a clear statement specifying that oral/written informed consent of the study participants or their legal guardians was obtained. For studies involving minors, assent should be obtained together with consent from parents/guardians starting from 8 years or the age limit of the country where the study is conducted. For studies that used secondary data, waiver of consent should be granted from the same ERC/IRB that approved the study and the authors should also write that the ERC/IRB not only approved the study but also waived the consent in this section of the manuscript. The anonymity of study participants should be maintained. Any subject identifier like the name of the school, health facility, or specific office should be avoided and photos of participants should disguise their identity.

Consent to publish

If confidential data is being used for publication (such as student grades, medical board data, or federal ethics board data), then an appropriate support/agreement letter should be included. If photos of participants are being used for publication, then the authors should confirm that they have obtained the participants’ written consent to publish.

Authors contribution

Authors are exclusively responsible for the contents of their submissions and must make sure that the authors listed in the manuscript include all and only those authors who have significantly contributed to the submitted manuscript according to the ICMJE criteria ( If persons other than authors were involved in important aspects of the research project and the preparation of the manuscript, their contribution should be acknowledged in the Acknowledgments section.

Conflict of interest

The Ethiopian Medical Journal requires authors, reviewers, and editors to be upfront about any potential conflicts of interest related to their research. This ensures transparency and reader trust in published findings.


Disclose the funding sources that supported this research in this section

Data availability

Publishing in EMJ implies your commitment to sharing the essential materials. This includes:

Raw data: Any data supporting the conclusions of your paper should be freely accessible to other researchers for non-commercial use, upholding participant confidentiality.

Data deposition: Where established data-sharing practices exist, EMJ requires deposit in relevant repositories.

Accessibility and format: We encourage making data available in public repositories when appropriate, or directly in the manuscript or supplementary files, preferably in machine-readable formats like spreadsheets.


The titles of journals should be abbreviated according to the style used for MEDLINE (

References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text and identify references in text, tables, and legends by Arabic numerals in parentheses.

Type the References on a separate sheet, double-spaced and keyed to the text.

Personal communications should be placed NOT in the list of references but in the text in parentheses, giving the name, date, and place where the information was gathered or the work carried out (e.g. personal communication, Alasebu Berhanu, MD, 1984, Gondar College of Medical Sciences). Unpublished data should also be referred to in the text.

References with six or fewer authors should all be listed. If more than six names list the first three, followed by et al. If you use “”, it should be written in italics


Listing of a reference to a journal should be according to the guidelines of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors ("Vancouver Style') and should include authors' name(s) and initial(s) separated by commas, full title of the article, correctly abbreviated name of the journal, year, volume number and first and last page numbers.

Reference to a book should contain the author's or authors’ name(s) and initials, title of the chapter, names of editors, title or book, city, name of publisher, year, and first and last page numbers.

The following examples demonstrate acceptable reference styles.


Gilbert C, Foster A. Childhood blindness in the context of Vision 2020: the right to sight. Bull World Health Org 2001;79:227-32

Teklu B. Disease patterns amongst civil servants in Addis Ababa: an analysis of outpatient visits to a Bank employee’s clinic. Ethiop Med J 1980;18:1-6

Tsega E, Mengesha B, Nordenfelt E, Hansen B-G; Lindberg J. Serological survey of human immunodeficiency virus infection in Ethiopia. Ethiop Med J 1988; 26(4): 179-84

Laird M, Deen M, Brooks S, et al. Telemedicine diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma by direct ophthalmoscopy (Abstract). Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 1996; 37:104-5

Books and chapters from books:

Henderson JW. Orbital Tumors, 3rd ed. Raven Press New York, 1994. Pp 125-136.

Clipard JP. Dry Eye disorders. In Albert DM, Jakobiec FA (Eds). Principles and Practice of Ophthalmology. W.B Saunders: Philadelphia, PA 1994 pp257-76.

Website: David K Lynch; laser History: Masers and lasers. 19/04/2001

  1. Brief Communication 

Short versions of Research and Applications articles, often describing focused approaches to solve a health problem or preliminary evaluation of a novel system or methodology

Word count: up to 2000 words

Abstract up to 200 words; excluding Abstract, Title, Tables/Figures, and References

Tables and Figures up to 5

References (vide supra – Original Article)

  1. Case Series

Minimum of three and maximum of 20 cases

Up to 1,000 words; excluding Abstract, Title, Tables/Figures, and References

Abstract of up to 200 words; structured; (vide supra)

Statistical statements here are expressed as 5/8 (62.5%)

Tables and Figures: no more than three

References: maximum of 20

  1. Case report

Report on a rare case or uncommon manifestation of a disease of academic or practical significance

Up to 750 words; excluding Abstract, Title, Tables/Figures, and References

Abstract of up to 100 words; unstructured;

Tables and Figures: no more than three

References: maximum of 10

  1. Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

Review of the literature on topics of broad scientific interest and relevant to EMJ readers

Abstract structured with headings as for an Original Article (vide supra)

The text should follow the same format as what is required of an Original Article

Word count: up to 8,000 words, excluding abstract, tables/Figures and references

Structured abstract up to 250 words

Tables and Figures up to 8

  1. Teaching Article

A comprehensive treatise of a specific topic/subject, considered as relevant to clinical medicine and public health targeting EMJ readers

By invitation of the Editorial Board; but an outline of the proposal can be submitted

Word limit of 8,000; excluding abstract, tables/Figures, and references

Unstructured Abstract up to 250 words

  1. Editorial

By invitation of the Editorial Board, but an editorial topic can be proposed and submitted

Word limit of 1,000 words: excluding references and title; no abstract

References up to 15.

  1. Perspectives

By invitation of the Editorial Board, but a topic can be proposed and submitted

Word limit of 1,500

References up to six

  1. Obituaries

By invitation of the Editorial Board, but readers are welcome to suggest individuals (members of the EMA) be featured.

Cover letter

All manuscripts must be submitted to the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal with a statement signed by each author that the paper has not been published elsewhere in whole or in part and is not submitted elsewhere while submitted to the Ethiopian Medical Journal. This does not refer to abstracts of oral communications at conferences/symposia or other proceedings.

Authors should submit their work through the Ethiopian Medical Journal website; and use Make a new submission to submit a new manuscript or view your pending submissions to follow the submitted or complete the pending submission. For more detailed information, please read the journal editorial policy from for more. 

Communication with Authors

All communications regarding a submitted manuscript will be with the corresponding author through the open journal system (OJS) or via email. Authors should be proactive and responsive to any communication efforts from EMJ. If the corresponding author is not responsive upon communication from EMJ for 3 3-week period, the submission will be rejected. 

Preparing tables

When preparing tables, please follow the formatting instructions below.

Tables should be numbered and cited in the text in sequence using Arabic numerals (i.e. Table 1, Table 2, etc.).

Tables less than one A4 or Letter page in length can be placed in the appropriate location within the manuscript.

Tables larger than one A4 or Letter page in length can be placed at the end of the document text file. Please cite and indicate where the table should appear at the relevant location in the text file so that the table can be added to the correct place during production.

Larger datasets or tables too wide for A4 or Letter landscape pages can be uploaded as additional files. Please see [below] for more information.

Tabular data provided as additional files can be uploaded as an Excel spreadsheet (.xls ) or comma separated values (.csv). Please use the standard file extensions.

Table titles (max 15 words) should be included above the table, and legends (max 300 words) should be included underneath the table.

Tables should not be embedded as figures or spreadsheet files, but should be formatted using the ‘Table object’ function in your word processing program.

Color and shading may not be used. Parts of the table can be highlighted using superscript, numbering, lettering, symbols or bold text, the meaning of which should be explained in a table legend.

Commas should not be used to indicate numerical values.”

Preparing figures

When preparing figures, please follow the formatting instructions below.

Figures should be numbered in the order they are first mentioned in the text, and uploaded in this order. Multi-panel figures (those with parts a, b, c, d etc.) should be submitted as a single composite file that contains all parts of the figure. Figures should be uploaded in the correct orientation.

Figure titles (max 15 words) and legends (max 300 words) should be provided in the main manuscript, not in the graphic file.

Figure keys should be incorporated into the graphic, not into the legend of the figure. Each figure should be closely cropped to minimize the amount of white space surrounding the illustration. 

Cropping figures improves accuracy when placing the figure in combination with other elements when the accepted manuscript is prepared for publication on our site. For more information on individual figure file formats, see our detailed instructions.

Individual figure files should not exceed 10 MB. If a suitable format is chosen, this file size is adequate for extremely high quality figures.

Please note that it is the responsibility of the author(s) to obtain permission from the copyright holder to reproduce figures (or tables) that have previously been published elsewhere. In order for all figures to be open access, authors must have permission from the rights holder if they wish to include images that have been published elsewhere in non open access journals. Permission should be indicated in the figure legend, and the original source included in the reference list.

Figure file types

We accept the following file formats for figures:

  • EPS (suitable for diagrams and/or images)
  • PDF (suitable for diagrams and/or images)
  • Microsoft Word (suitable for diagrams and/or images, figures must be a single page)
  • PowerPoint (suitable for diagrams and/or images, figures must be a single page)
  • TIFF (suitable for images)
  • JPEG (suitable for photographic images, less suitable for graphical images)
  • PNG (suitable for images)
  • BMP (suitable for images)
  • CDX (ChemDraw - suitable for molecular structures)
  • For information and suggestions of suitable file formats for specific figure types, please see our author academy.
  • Figure size and resolution
  • Figures are resized during publication of the final full text and PDF versions to conform to the BioMed Central standard dimensions, which are detailed below.
  • Figures on the web:
  • Width of 600 pixels (standard), 1200 pixels (high resolution).
  • Figures in the final PDF version:
  • Width of 85 mm for half-page width figure
  • Width of 170 mm for full page width figure
  • Maximum height of 225 mm for figure and legend
  • Image resolution of approximately 300 dpi (dots per inch) at the final size

Figures should be designed such that all information, including text, is legible at these dimensions. All lines should be wider than 0.25 pt when constrained to standard figure widths. All fonts must be embedded.”