When an author sends his manuscript to The Journal, what happens between submission and acceptance or rejection? How is the manuscript reviewed, and by whom? This, of all questions, is perhaps the one authors most frequently ask.
When a manuscript arrives in our offices, both the editor and one of the senior editors examine it and record a preliminary assessment. The manuscript is then assigned to a physician-editor, who will perform a more detailed study before sending the paper to appropriate referees. At this stage it is helpful to editor and to author if the manuscript has been prepared conforming to Journal standards. We outline these standards in "Counsel to Authors" (in the early pages of every issue), as well as in our more detailed publication, Advice to Authors which also illustrates the preparation of acceptable figures and tables, the format for references, and related information.*
The task of obtaining