Author instructions

The Portuguese Journal of Pediatrics (PJP), founded in 1938, is the official journal of the Portuguese Society of Pediatrics (SPP).

The PJP is a scientific double-blind peer reviewed quarterly journal published online in English. The journal aims to publish high quality articles on clinical and experimental pediatrics and maternal fetal conditions.

This journal publishes a variety of articles including original articles, review articles, case series, case reports, images in Pediatrics, editorials, letters to the editor, guidelines, perspectives, and other content to improve clinical practice.

The PJP provides an online platform at http://publisher., where authors can submit their manuscripts and follow the editorial process. After the registration is complete, authors can log in, submit, and track the progress of their manuscripts. Each submission is identified by a unique identification number.

To avoid duplications in the system, please refrain from creating a new request when resubmitting your modified files. You should continue using the same reference until your manuscript completes the editorial process.

Questions should be directed to the support team at:


Ahead of print

The ahead of print service allows final articles to be published before being included in a PJP Issue.




Before submitting a manuscript, authors must prepare the following documents:

- The Cover letter (template available here) should be written and signed by the corresponding author and include the relevant data to justify the article’s publication and its originality. Moreover, the cover letter must state that the manuscript has not been submitted to any other journal than the PJP, has not been previously published, adheres to the structure and style of the PJP, complies with ethical and legal guidelines, and indicates sources of funding (if applicable).

- The Authorship responsibility statement (template available here) should be filled out by the corresponding author and signed by all authors, specifying the contribution of each author and his/her responsibility for the data validity of the article’s content. Finally, each author should confirm the copyright transfer to the PJP. Although editors and proofreaders make all efforts to ensure the scientific and technical quality of the manuscripts, the ultimate responsibility of the content (including accuracy and precision of the observations and opinions/ideas expressed) is the sole responsibility of the authors to whom the article’s intellectual property belongs.

- Declaration of Conflicts of Interest (ICMJE template, available at interest/). Authors must declare any potential conflicts of interest that could cause a bias (or be seen as a bias) in the conduct of their work in the individual ICMJE template declaration. 

- Consequently, authors must disclose all financial and personal relationships related to the submitted work. They should also identify any benefits associated with the article’s publication, including stock or economic interests in companies or other institutions, wages or awards, grants or other forms of funding, consulting, patent rights, or other financial relations. The existence of conflicts of interest in publishing an article does not constitute a reason for rejection, as long as the said conflicts are appropriately declared. For any queries on what constitutes a relevant financial or personal interest, the authors should contact the Editor-in-Chief.


When applicable, authors should also submit:

a) Informed consent of each participant;

b) Informed consent of each person appearing in photographs, even after taking appropriate measures to preserve anonymity;

c) Authorization to reproduce/use previously published material (for example, illustrations);

d) Declaration of approval by the ethics committees of the institutions involved.


All documents must be provided during the submission process, through the online platform.

Any personal, professional, political, religious, or other relationship that is likely to influence the article should be reported as well. This information will not affect the editorial decision. They will be kept confidential during the manuscript review and will be published if the paper is accepted.




All articles submitted to the journal must comply with the PJP instructions, otherwise, correction requirements will result in publication delay.

- Manuscripts must be provided as a standard document format (e.g., .doc, .docx).

- Figures must be provided in a standard image format (e.g., JPEG, TIFF, PNG) (with high resolution, 800 dpi for graphics and 300 dpi for photographs).

- Tables must be provided as an editable Microsoft Word document (i.e., .doc, .docx) or an editable Microsoft Excel spreadsheet (i.e., .xls, .xlsx) containing only text and no formulas.

- Manuscripts should be double spaced.

- Continuous line numbers must be included.

- Single spaces are needed after periods.




Front page

a) Title (concise and objective, preferably containing less than 15 words).

b) Name of all authors (clinical or professional name) and respective affiliation(s) (department, institution, city, country). All authors should provide an ORCID ID at submission which should be entered into the user profile in the submission system.

c) Address and e-mail of the corresponding author.

d) Running title for the header (with a maximum of 40 characters).

e) Type of article.

f) Word count (separately for the abstract and the main text).

g) Number of figures and tables.


Second page

a) Abstract in English and Portuguese (maximum word count according to the article type). The abstract should not contain references, and abbreviations should be avoided.

b) Keywords (three to six) must comply with Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) terminology found at In manuscripts that do not require an abstract, the keywords should be presented at the end of the main text.

c) Key Points: Authors should state the key points of their work under the headings "What is known" and "What is added". Each topic should have up to three points with a maximum of 20 words. "What's added" in particular should contain at least one original idea addressing the novelty of the article.


Following pages

- The article’s main text should include the following sections, according to each article type.

- The Introduction should contain the scientific arguments that contextualize the subject matter, substantiate the realization of the study, and identify its objectives. Therefore, this section should only have the necessary references for these purposes.

- In the Methods, the author should describe:

a) Study sample or population (specifying definition and means of identification, recruiting, and selection);

b) Study location (both time and space) without disclosing the author’s identification or the institution where the study took place;

c) Study design;

d) Data collection methods;

e) Data analysis methods. Statistical methods adopted should be described in sufficient detail. The computer program (including its version and the manufacturer) used for data analysis should be mentioned.

- Ethical considerations should follow this section and include such information as the approval of ethics committees (and ethics code, if available) and informed consent, if applicable.

- The Results should be presented in the text and complemented by illustrations (tables, figures), and redundant information should be avoided.

- The Discussion should not include repeated information presented in the other article sections. Instead, it should focus on the comparison of data from the literature, innovative aspects, and the conclusions that result from them. Only the indispensable references to discuss the study results should be included in the discussion section of the study. At the end of the discussion, strengths and limitations should be pointed out. The conclusions should be coherent with the objectives. Authors should avoid statements and conclusions that are not fully supported by the results.

- Acknowledgments, financing sources, awards, and previous presentations should be stated at the end of the text and precede the references.

- References should be indicated in the text in order of entry, as superscript Arabic numerals. Authors may be identified, but the reference number must always be given. Unpublished data and personal communications should be referenced directly in the text. The citation of a reference as "in press" implies that it has been accepted for publication. References should comply with the "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" ( Unless not available, DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is mandatory at the end of the reference.

- After the references, the illustrations should be presented individually on a new page, in the following order: tables and figures numbered as referenced in the text. A self-explanatory succinct and clear caption should accompany each table and figure. Table footnotes should contain information relevant to specific cells of the table. 

- If needed, these symbols can be used in order: *, †, ‡, §, ||, ¶, **, ††, ‡‡.

- The inclusion of previously published figures or tables requires authorization by the copyright holder (author or editor).

- Footnotes should be avoided. When necessary, they must be numbered consecutively and appear at the bottom of the appropriate page.




The PJP accepts the following article types:

  1. Editorials;
  2. Original articles reporting clinical or basic research;
  3. Review articles;
  4. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses;
  5. Case series;
  6. Case reports;
  7. Images in Pediatrics;
  8. Perspectives;
  9. Letters to the Editor;
  10. Short Report
  11. Guidelines;
  12. Miscellaneous.



Article type



Main text structure

Word limit

Tables / figures







Total up to 1

Up to 10


Original article

Max. 250 words; structured (Introduction and Objectives,
Methods, Results, and Discussion)


Up to 6

Introduction; Methods; Results; Discussion;
References; Tables and Figures


Total up to 6

Up to 100

Review article

Max. 250 words; unstructured

Up to 6

Introduction; thematic sections at the discretion of the authors; Conclusions; References; Tables, and


Total up to 6

Up to 150

Systematic review and meta-analysis

Max. 250 words; structured (Introduction and Objectives, Methods, Results, and Discussion)

Up to 6

PRISMA guideline Introduction; Methods; Results; Discussion; References; Tables, and



Total up to 6

Up to 150


Case series

Max. 250 words; structured (Introduction and Objectives,
Methods, Results, and Discussion)


Introduction; Methods; Results; Discussion;
References; Tables, and Figures


Total up to 6

Up to 100


Case report

Max. 150 words; structured

(Introduction, Case report, and Discussion)


Up to 6

Introduction; Case report;

Discussion; References; Tables, and Figures


Total up to 4

Up to 25

Images in Pediatrics


Up to 6



Total up to 4

Up to 5


Max. 200 words; unstructured

Up to 6



Total up to 2

Up to 50


Short Report

Max. 200 words; structured (Introduction and Objectives, Methods, Results, and Discussion)


Up to 6

Introduction and Objectives, Methods, Results, and Discussion, Tables, and Figures




Total up to 2


Up to 30

Letter to the Editor





Total up to 1

Up to 10


Max. 250 words; unstructured

Up to 6

Introduction; thematic sections at the discretion of the authors; Conclusions;
References; Tables, and Figures


Total up to 6

Up to 100





Editorials are written by the Editorial Board or by invitation from the Editor-in-Chief and are a comment on current topics or articles published in the journal.
They should not exceed 1200 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations) and 10 references and may contain one image (table or figure). This study type does not include an abstract.

Original articles
Original articles must include the following sections: Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, References, Tables, and Figures.
Original articles should not exceed 4000 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), up to six illustrations (tables, figures), and up to 100 references. The abstract should not exceed 250 words.

Review articles
Review articles are comprehensive articles that address a topic. The type of review should be specified (narrative, critical review, overview, etc.). They must include the following sections: Introduction, thematic sections at the discretion of the authors, Conclusions, References, Tables, and Figures.
Review articles should not exceed 4000 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), up to six illustrations (tables, figures), and up to 150 references. The abstract should not exceed 250 words.

Systematic reviews and meta-analyses
Systematic reviews summarize the results of accurately designed studies that are available and provide a substantial level of evidence on an addressed topic.
Methods must provide a clear indication of the literature search strategy, data mining, classification of evidence, and analysis. Compliance with PRISMA guidelines ( is mandatory.
All systematic reviews should be registered in PROSPERO ( Systematic reviews may include meta-analyses based on appropriate statistical methods.
Systematic reviews and meta-analyses should not exceed 4000 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), six illustrations (tables, figures), and 150 references. The abstract should not exceed 250 words.

Case series
Case series are descriptive reviews that usually gather data on uncommon or newly described conditions or procedures. They must include the following sections: Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion.
Case series should not exceed 3000 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), up to six illustrations (tables, figures), and up to 100 references. The abstract should not exceed 250 words.

Case reports
Case reports should include the following sections: Introduction, Case Report, and Discussion. At the end of the discussion, the authors must present the key points of the study in two short sections under the headings of "What is Known" and "What is new", each containing three short sentences.
Compliance with CARE guidelines ( is mandatory.
Case reports should not have more than five authors, and all authors must have a substantial individual contribution both to the writing of the manuscript and the patient care. Those who only contributed to patient care should be listed in the appendix.
The text must not exceed 2000 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), four illustrations (tables, figures), and 25 references. The abstract should not exceed 150 words.

Images in Pediatrics
Images in Pediatrics are an important contribution to clinical learning and practice. This study type is intended to publish clinical, radiological, histological, and surgical images, among others. The title should not exceed eight words, and the authors must not exceed four. The images should be of high quality and educational value. The text should present a brief medical history and relevant physical examination data and laboratory and clinical follow-up, as appropriate.
The text should not exceed 300 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations) and five references, and it may include one figure or table. This study type does not include an abstract.

This type of manuscripts is usually by the invitation of the Editorial Board. Unsolicited papers can also be accepted (and, thus, encouraged) and may cover a wide variety of topics in health care, including current or emerging problems, controversies in the field of paediatrics, management and health policy, medical education, history of medicine, society issues, and epidemiology.
Authors who wish to suggest an article in this category should send the respective abstract by e-mail to the Editor-in-Chief, indicating the authors (no more than three authors are recommended) and the article’s title for evaluation.
The text should not exceed 1200 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations) and 50 references, and it may include two illustrations. The unstructured abstract should not exceed 200 words.

Short Report
This type of manuscript is intended mainly for publication of brief research reports, preliminary research results, short guidelines or guideline updates, and short medical education articles. Case reports, opinion articles, and review articles are excluded. The findings should be novel and judged to be of high importance.
The text should not exceed 1200 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations) and 30 references, and it may include two illustrations (tables or figures). The abstract should not exceed 200 words.

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor are critical comments about an article published in the journal or a short statement about a given topic or clinical case.
If it involves a critical comment about an article, the following general structure must be followed: identify the article (reference 1); justify your writing; provide evidence (from the literature or personal experience); provide a summary; cite references. The author's answers must comply with the same structure. The manuscript will be accepted faster if it refers to an article published recently.
Letters to the Editor should not exceed 600 words (excluding references and captions of illustrations), ten references, and may include one figure or table, and they have no abstract.

The submission of consensus and guidelines to the Portuguese Pediatric Society or other societies should be made by the respective Presidents or their representatives by contacting the Editorial Board. The authorship is attributed to the Section or Society in question. The approval date, the authors’ names, and their institutional affiliation must appear at the end of the text.

Clinical practice guidelines should not exceed 3000 words, six illustrations (tables or figures), and 100 references. The unstructured abstract should not exceed 250 words.




Do not use abbreviations or acronyms in the title and the abstract. The extended form of non-standard abbreviations should be provided before their first use, followed by the abbreviation in parentheses. This is not requested if the abbreviation is a standard unit of measurement.

Study location
The institution where the study took place should not be explicitly named in any place in the manuscript.

Numbers one through nine must be spelled out, except when they have decimals or if followed by units of measurements. Numbers greater than nine are written in digits, except at the beginning of a sentence. The point must be used as a decimal separator. A thousand separator (,) should not be used.
Numeric ranges must be separated by "–" (for example, 25-30). In addition, a space between a value and the respective unit of measurement should be used (for example, 25-30 mg), except for percentages (for example, 3%) and temperature values (for example, 5ºC) which must be presented without a space.

Units of Measure
Units of measurement in the International System of Units should be used.

Species names
The author should write the names of species in italics (e.g. Homo sapiens). The name of the genus and species must be written in full, both in the title of the manuscript and the first mention in the manuscript.

Genes, mutations, genotypes, and alleles
These must be written in italics. The recommended names should be used by consulting a genetic nomenclature database (e.g. HUGO for human genes). Sometimes, it is advisable to indicate the gene synonyms the first time it appears in the text. Gene prefixes, such as those used for oncogenes or cellular localization, should be written in italics (e.g. v-fes, c- MYC).

Multimedia Files
The multimedia files must be sent in a separate file with the manuscript. The multimedia material must respect the production quality standards for publication without needing modification or editing. Acceptable file formats include MPEG, AVI, or QuickTime.

Appendices should present long or detailed surveys, extensive mathematical calculations, or item lists. They should be placed after the reference list, if necessary, with captions. Lengthy appendices, such as algorithms, protocols, and research, are only published online. The URL is provided in the manuscript where the attachment is mentioned.

Referencing style
The PJP follows the AMA Manual of Style (11th Edition).




The editorial process consists of 6 stages:

1. Reception of the manuscript (indeterminate, depending on whether the author meets the requirements): its objective is to verify that the manuscript complies with the specifications of these instructions for authors and that the submitted documentation is complete.

2. Initial editorial review (maximum 5 business days): its objective is to corroborate the relevance, timeliness, originality, and scientific contribution of the manuscript, as well as the methodological and statistical soundness of the study. At this time, it will be submitted to an electronic plagiarism detection system. Derived from this, a rejected opinion may be obtained, or it will be sent for review by peer researchers.

3. Review by peer researchers (maximum 30 business days): the opinion of at least two experts in the area in question will be obtained, who will evaluate the technical and methodological aspects of the investigation.

4. Editorial review (maximum 7 business days): its objective is to make a decision based on the opinion of peer reviewers. The opinion can be rejected, major changes, minor changes or accepted. In the case of major or minor changes, it will be submitted again for evaluation by the initial peer reviewers.

5. Final edition (6 weeks): its objective is the technical and linguistic edition (and translation), layout of galleys, DOI assignment, and correction by the author.

6. Advanced publication: All manuscripts will be published ahead of print on the journal's website as soon as they complete the editing process, until they are incorporated into a final issue of the journal.




The corresponding author will receive proofs of the article for revision and correction of terminology errors, or any other updates related to facts/figures. As the article will already have been edited according to the journal’s internal editorial guidelines, style corrections will not be accepted. The corresponding author will receive an email with the article in PDF format, on which they can leave their comments. Authors will need to have Adobe Reader (version 9, or a later version), downloadable for free). For other system requirements, please visit the Adobe website.

Alternatively, authors may list their corrections and submit them via email. Any major changes at this stage will be subject to the approval of the Editor. Authors should make sure to include all changes in a single email, as we cannot guarantee the inclusion of subsequent corrections.

The proof review is the responsibility of the author.

Relevant links:

Committee on Publication Ethics. Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers