Publishing original medical research can be a daunting task. However, there are some tips that you should consider to make this process easier. These tips will ensure that you produce what you want and have it published.
Talking To A Senior
Having your own original medical research produced working alone is unrealistic as most research is done by a team. These teams are generally led by seniors who are consultants in the chosen field or an academic registrar. If you are doing your clinical placement you can find out who the doctors are who regularly have work published by asking around of looking on websites like PubMed.
To determine who you should approach you need to look at the work they have published and read some of the abstracts. This gives you an idea of the research they are interested in and helps you determine if this is in line with your research. It is important to contact the person by email first and then move onto face-to-face contact. Most of these seniors will be pleased to see a medical student who is interested in similar work to them or at least be able to refer you to a more suitable candidate.
For most students, it can be a bit daunting to try and approach someone who is well-known in their field. However, most people will welcome you and if you are able to offer something that other students cannot they may be willing to work as a supervisor for your research. It is important that you are willing and able to put in the time to learn about the person and their work.
What You Should Publish
Most publications take in a range of controlled trials to case reports. You should ask your supervisor for advice on the type of work that is likely to be published within your field. Generally, a case report is easier to complete and will take less time than a full research trial. While you are on placement you should see if there are any interesting cases or images that you could write about and then ask your supervisor if they feel it would be worth doing a paper on it.
Where You Should Publish
While it is acceptable to publish your work on any journal found on PubMed, you should ask your supervisor where they would suggest. There are certain medical journals that are dedicated to publishing work by students. However, you will need to check if they are on PubMed particularly if you are looking to earn academic credits for the publication.
The Impact Factor
Every journal has an impact factor and you need to know about this before you publish. This factor is a measurement for how well the journal is regarded and the importance of the journal in the medical field it relates to. Choosing a journal with a high impact factor is ideal; you should note that this will make it harder get your work published. Journals with very high scores are usually unlikely to publish work by medical students. However, if you do then you may be able to take advantage of the influx of companies looking for those with medical degrees, such as Sidra, which is coming to the UK according to Cavendish Professionals.
It is very common for research papers to be rejected by journals. However, you should not be put off by this as you may be able to present your work elsewhere such as at conferences. You will also be able to submit your work to a different journal.
Get our Badge!