Instructions for Authors

Thank you for your interest in submitting to South Dakota Medicine.

Please read through our Information for Authors below for manuscript submission guidelines.


  • For a manuscript to be considered for publication, all eligible physician authors are required to be members of the South Dakota State Medical Association or the manuscript will not be considered. Non-member physicians will be provided with information on joining the SDSMA or have the option to pay a fee.

  • In addition, a fee applies to all non-physician, non-medical student authors. For a manuscript to be considered for publication that includes non-physician authors, the manuscript must include SDSMA physician member(s).

 Types of Manuscripts Accepted:

  • Reports of original research (bench, clinical, health services or educational)
  • Case reports
  • Clinical updates or review
  • Reports of best practices or innovative approaches to medical practice
  • Reports on health policy
  • Reports on the business of medicine
  • Essays (e.g., reflections) and poetry with a medicaltheme
  • Editorials on relevant topics including papers published in the journal

 Content and Formatting

Cover letter - A cover letter should indicate the corresponding author and the corresponding authors' phone number and email address. Manuscripts are only accepted for publication on the condition they are contributed solely to South Dakota Medicine and this is to be acknowledged in the cover letter. When there is more than one author, the cover letter should note that all authors have reviewed the final manuscript. Please include the full name, academic degree and position title of each author.

Manuscripts (scientific and nonscientific) should be typed in Microsoft Word. Manuscripts in PDF format or hard copy will not be accepted.

Title page and author listing - Each manuscript is to include a title page indicating the paper's title and the authors' name(s) and affiliations: academic degree(s), address, location of employment and position title, including any academic positions or appointments. Medical students should include their year (i.e., MS I, MS II etc). Do not format author titles and positions with numbered superscripts. Instead, simply include affiliation information next to each author's name. Manuscript pages are to be numbered consecutively.

Patient written consent - Case reports require a statement on the title page that the patient has given written consent for publication (more information about patient consent and a form can be found in the "Clinical update and reviews" section below). Authors should not send a copy of the consent form to South Dakota Medicine. It is recommended that authors keep a copy of the consent for four years after publication.

Each author must meet the following four criteria defined by International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE): (1) substantial contributions to conception or design of the work or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; (2) drafting of the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; (3) final approval of the version to be published; and (4) 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.

Non-scientific essays/papers/opinion pieces/editorials should be written in clear, concise language and are limited to 1,500 words.

Clinical updates and reviews should have an evidence-based focus. Case reports should include a discussion of the topic of the report with an evidence-based focus. When a clinical recommendation is made, it is particularly desirable to rate the strength of evidence that supports such recommendation. Case reports require patient consent. On the title page, please state that the patient has given written consent for publication. An example/acceptable consent form for patients to sign can be found here. Authors should not send a copy of the consent form to South Dakota Medicine. It is recommended that authors keep a copy of the consent for four years after publication.

Manuscripts reporting results of studies are to include the following sections: abstract, introduction or background, methods, results, discussion and references. The abstract is to be brief (limited to 250 words) and factual, not descriptive. The abstract should be structured and labeled as follows: introduction or background, methods, results and conclusions.


Figures and tables - Charts, graphs and tables should be created in Microsoft Word whenever possible. All photos and images which are not created in Word should be submitted as separate JPG, PNG, PDF or TIF files. Do not paste any images, figures, photos, charts, graphs or tables from a PDF or JPG into a Word document or PowerPoint. Instead, attach it separately in its original format. All figures should be referred to in the text of the manuscript. Materials from other sources must include written permission from the author and publisher.

Abbreviations - The spelled-out words followed by the abbreviation in parenthesis should be used on first mention unless the abbreviation is a standard unit of measurement.

A conflict of interest statement should be included at the end of the text if there are any potential, perceived or real conflicts of interest for any author. If the author has no conflicts, so state. These disclosures may be published along with the article at the editor's discretion.


References are to be numbered consecutively in the order of appearance in the text, and in the style of ICMJE Recommendations ( Reference numbers are to be superscripts in-text.

When placing the superscript, place it after punctuation (the reference superscript should be placed after a period or comma, for example).

  • Do not place reference numbers in parentheses or brackets.
  • Do not sync your references in Word with programs such as citation builder, endnote, etc.
  • Do not place reference numbers in the abstract.

If references are submitted in the incorrect format or style, the manuscript will be sent back for the author to revise. This applies to references in-text and the reference list.

Required style: Reference list format examples:

  • 1.  Yank V, Rennie D. Disclosure of researcher contributions: a study of original research articles. Ann Intern Med. 1999;130:661-70.
  • 2.  Flanagin A, Fontanarosa PB, DeAngelis CD. Authorship for research groups. JAMA. 2002;288:3166-8.
  • 3.  Godlee F, Jefferson T. Peer Review in Health Sciences. London: BMJ Books; 1999.

Email manuscripts to
Elizabeth Reiss, MS
Staff Editor
South Dakota Medicine


SDSMA member benefits

South Dakota State Medical Association
2600 W 49th St Ste 100
Sioux Falls, SD 57105
Phone: 605.336.1965 | Fax: 605.274.3274

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