Instructions for authors

Aims and scope

Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa (ARP) is an international scientific peer-reviewed journal covering clinical and experimental aspects of rheumatic diseases. The journal publishes Original Articles, Reviews, Case Reports, Images in Rheumatology, Letters to the Editor and special articles intended to improve Clinical Practice (e.g. guidelines and clinical protocols).

ARP was founded in 1973 as the official journal of the Portuguese Society of Rheumatology and subscribes the requirements for the acceptance of manuscripts in biomedical journals proposed by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, published initially in N Engl J Med 1991; 324: 424-428, and available in

The editorial policy of ARP follows the Editorial Policy Statements published by the Council of Science Editors, available in

Articles should be written in English. The accuracy of the manuscript contents, as well as written opinions, are of the exclusive responsibility of the author(s).

Papers submitted to ARP must be original and cannot be previously published elsewhere. Published articles will remain property of the journal and cannot be reproduced, as a whole or as a part, without the authorization of the Editor.

The journal is indexed on PubMed/Medline and all the articles are available online with open and free access.


Authorship criteria

ARP follows the authorship criteria of the ICMJE (available in which are based on the following 4 criteria: 1. Having had a substantial contribution to the conception or design of the work, acquisition of data, analysis and interpretation of results; 2. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; 3. Final approval of the version to be published; 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. All those designated as authors should meet all these four criteria for authorship, and all who meet the four criteria should be identified as authors. Everyone who has contributed to the manuscript, but who does not meet the authorship criteria, should be referred in the acknowledgments.

Manuscript submission guidelines

Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa offers a web-based submission and peer review process of the manuscripts. Through ARP website (, authors can submit and track the status of their manuscripts as they progress through the review process. The corresponding author is notified by email about the status of the manuscript on the same day of the decision.

In order to submit a manuscript, users should create an account:

  • Go to Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa website (, click the buttons "Sign in" -> "Register" and follow all the instructions carefully. An activation email will be sent to your email address. To activate your ARP account you should click the link sent by email and your browser will be automatically redirected to a registration message at ARP website.

With an ARP account, users can submit and monitor the progress of their manuscripts:

  • Go to Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa website (, enter your private area and click the button "Submit manuscript". Fill in the form following the instructions carefully.

Instructions for authors

To avoid delays during the revision process read carefuly the instructions and assure that your manuscript lenght and format is conform to ARP requirements before submitting.

  • Manuscript title: The title should describe briefly the content of the paper. Avoid abbreviations in the title. A short running title shoud also be provided.
  • Authors and affiliations
  • Summary: A structured abstract with no more than 350 words summarizing the aims, methods, major results and conclusions should be included. The word limit is 180 words for Case Reports. Following the abstract include 3-5 keywords.
  • Corresponding author information: name; mailing address; phone number and email address

Types of manuscripts:

  • Editorials will be requested by the Editor and will be based on particularly relevant issues or on comments to articles published in that issue of ARP. Editorials should not exceed 1200 words, with a maximum of 15 references and one Table or Figure
  • Review articles will be also commissioned by the Editor. However, authors interested in presenting a review article are welcomed to contact the Editor. Review articles should not exceed 4000 words, 6 Tables or Figures and 100 references. ARP will preferentially accept systematic reviews of the literature that comply with PRISMA. 
  • Original articles: the text of original articles should be submitted with the following sections: Introduction, Material (or Patients) and Methods, Results, Discussion and Conclusions. Original articles should not exceed 4000 words, 6 Tables or Figures and 60 references. Please insure that observational studies are presented in accordance to STOBE statement and randomized trials according to CONSORT statement.
  • Clinical Practice: the text should be submitted with the following sections: Introduction, Material and Methods, Results, Discussion and Conclusions. It should not exceed 4000 words, 6 Tables or Figures and 60 references;
  • Case Based Reviews: ARP will preferentially accept case based reviews. The text should be submitted with the following sections: Introduction, Case report and Discussion. Case reports should present illustrative figures (6 max.) and should not exceed 2000 words and 25 references;
  • Images in Rheumatology: images depicting rare clinical manifestations or of particular interest for clinical practice can be submitted. This type of publication should contain a maximum of 4 figures and the accompanying text should not exceed 500 words, with a maximum of 5 references;
  • Letter: Letters to the Editor should be a comment on a previous ARP article or a short clinical study or case report. The text should not exceed 600 words, a maximum of 10 references and one Table/Figure.

Tables should be cited in the text with Roman numerals. Each Table should have a title and contain no vertical lines. Horizontal lines should be used only as separators between titles and subtitles. All abbreviations should be explained at the bottom of the Table. Each Table should be uploaded separately.

Figures should be cited in consecutive order, using Arabic numerals. All figures must have legends. Each Figure should be uploaded separately in high quality JPEG or TIFF. The publisher reserves the right to regroup figures and change their size to use pages efficiently.

References should be submitted with Vancouver reference style, following the recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) ( References should be cited by a superscript numerical system and should be listed in the order cited in the text. Journal titles must be abbreviated in accordance with Index Medicus style. When 6 or less authors contributed to a cited article, all authors must be listed. If the number of authors is more than 7, list only the first 6 authors followed by et al. References of unpublished work, presentations or personal observations should be inserted in the text (in parenthesis) and not as a reference.
Authors are responsible for references accuracy.


Journal article
Name(s) and initials of author(s). Article title. Journal name Year; Volume: Pages(s).
Ex: Hill J, Bird HA, Hopkins R, Lawton C, Wright C. Survey of satisfaction with care in a rheumatology outpatient clinic. Ann Rheum Dis 1992; 51: 195-197.

Article published online (insert DOI)
Name(s) and initials of author(s). Article title. Journal name Published Online First: date. doi.
Ex: Merkel PA, Curthbertson D, Hellmich B et al. Comparison of disease activity measures for ANCA-associated vasculitis. Ann Rheum Dis Published Online First: 29 July
2008. doi:10.1136/ard.2008.097758.

Chapter in book
Name(s) and initials of author(s) of chapter. Chapter title. In: Name(s) and initial(s) of editor(s). Book title. City: Name of publisher, year of publication: page(s).
Ex: Stewart AF. Hypercalcemia resulting from medications. In: Favus MD, ed Primer on the Metabolic Bone Diseases and Disorders of Mineral Metabolism. New York: Raven Press, 1991: 177-178.

Name(s) and initials of author(s). Book title. City: Name of publisher, year of publication: page(s).
Ex: Lorig K. Patient Education. A practical approach. St Louis: Mosby-Year Book, 1992: 51.
Acta Reumatol?gica Portuguesa, Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia

Online document
Document title. http://address. Accessed date.
Ex: Programa Nacional de Luta Contra a Tuberculose. Sistema de Vigil?ncia (SVIG-TB).
Direc??o-Geral da Sa?de – Divis?o de Doen?as Transmiss?veis, Mar?o de 2005. Accessed in January 25th 2008.

Include in this section acknowledgments to people that have contributed to the work but are not qualified as authors. Institutions and sources of financial support may also be included in this section.

Review process (double blind)

After submission and technical approval the articles are sent to peer-review by experts in the field. Upon conclusion of the review the authors are notified and receive the reviewers’ comments. Based in this review the authors should update the manuscript and resubmit a new version. In the resubmission process, a letter of reply to the reviews must be included as well as a tack changes version of the manuscript. In these documents the identification of the authors and affiliations should be barred.

The authors have a maximum period of 3 months to submit the reply to the reviewers. After this period ARP Editorial team reserves the right to remove the manuscript from the reviewing process.

Review Criteria
The criteria for acceptance of a manuscript for publication takes into account the quality and originality of the research, excellence in writing and organization of the manuscript and the potential impact in medical literature.
Manuscripts accepted for publication will be stored and presented as "online-first articles" until the editors select them to be part of a specific journal number

Corresponding authors of accepted manuscripts will receive digital page proofs for approval. Proofs must be reviewed within 72 hours of receipt. Authors are responsible for the detailed review of the text, figures, tables, legends and references, and should contact the Editors if any changes need to be made. Only minor changes and typographical corrections are allowed at the proof stage.

Upon acceptance for publication, authors transfer the copyrights interests of the manuscript to Acta Reumatológica Portuguesa.