Abstract Preparation and How to Write a Good Abstract

Abstract Preparation
How to Write a Good Abstract

 

Abstract Preparation

There are two types of abstract submission: Original Scientific Research and Educational Exhibit.

Original Scientific Research (Abstracts for Oral or Poster Presentation)

Material suitable for scientific presentation may include both laboratory and clinical investigations of topics that would be appropriate for publication in the Journal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology (JVIR). In general, original research, important new observations, and other presentations that represent substantial work with demonstrable results are appropriate for scientific presentations. Abstracts submitted in this category will be assigned to either oral or poster presentation after acceptance but while still blinded. Assignment to oral or poster presentation is based upon the subject and nature of the abstracts accepted each year, as well as the abstract score. Authors who feel that their research is best presented as a poster must designate "Poster only" when they submit their abstract. All original scientific research posters will be presented in the traditional, hard-copy format.

 

A structured abstract is required and should be organized into the following four required sections. Respect the character limit of 2,200 characters for the body of the abstract. Abstracts in excess of the character limit will not be submittable.

 

*Required* Purpose: Provide a succinct statement of the purpose of your study.

*Required* Materials and Methods: Describe the nature of the subjects, methods of selection, materials (including manufacturers' names and locations-city and state or country), and all procedures. The characteristics of study group(s) (such as sex distribution, mean age, underlying medical problems) should be included in this section. References should be made to established methods that have been published. New or substantially modified methods should be described, supported with rationale, and critically evaluated for real and potential limitations.

*Required* Results: Actual data (with statistical significance) should be included in the Results. Report of data and observations should be in logical sequence in the text, tables and illustrations. Data given in tables should not be repeated in the text.

*Required* Conclusion: The conclusions should be drawn directly from the results of the study. Consider new and important aspects of the study and conclusions that can be drawn directly from your data. Include implications of findings, and limitations of your study. Avoid claiming priority, alluding to work that has not been completed, or making unqualified statements not supported by your data. Recommendations, when appropriate, should be made.

(Optional) References: Number any references in the order in which they appear in the text.

 

For further information, refer to the Instructions for Authors at JVIR.org.

 

Educational Exhibit (Poster Presentation Only)

Intended for educational exhibits that highlight a technique, concept, or subject, rather than hypothesis-driven research. Material in this category is not suited for presentation as a scientific abstract. Examples include review of a topic, "how-to" demonstrations and pictorial essays. Abstracts accepted as educational exhibits will be presented as posters in the traditional, hard-copy format.

 

A structured abstract is required and should be organized into the following four paragraphs

 

*Required* Learning Objectives

*Required* Background

*Required* Clinical Findings/Procedure Details

*Required* Conclusion and/or Teaching Points

(Optional) References: Number any references in the order in which they appear in the text.

 

How to Write a Good Abstract

Title: Use a short, specific title indicating the nature of the investigation. Avoid use of abbreviations in the title.

Abstract body: Standard abbreviations may be used in the abstract body without definition (e.g., PTA). Nonstandard abbreviations must be placed in parentheses after first use of the word(s) in the abstract; such abbreviations should be kept to a minimum. Use generic drug names. No graphs or pictures can be included with abstract submissions. Do not include credits or grant support. To ensure blinded peer-review, no direct references to the author(s) or institution(s) of origin should be made anywhere in the title, body, tables or figures.

Abstracts may be edited until the abstract submission deadline. Prepare your abstract carefully. Misspellings, poor grammar, and typographical errors can jeopardize chances of acceptance. Abstracts will not be copyedited except to change minor typographical errors when identified. Changes by the author, after final abstract submission, are not allowed.

Follow the rules: Abstracts are graded in a blinded fashion. Identify and state your Purpose, Materials and Methods, Results and Conclusions. The purpose should define your question and its relevance; the methods describe your approach to answering the question; the results are your data; the conclusion must be related to and justified by the preceding three sections. Commonly, abstracts are downgraded because new data are presented in the Conclusion section, or conclusions are stated in or reached in the Results section, or the purpose and conclusion cannot be connected.

Respect the character limit of 2,200 characters for the body of the abstract. Abstracts in excess of the character limit will not be submittable.

Be brief and clear: The abstract should be readily understandable to a reader completely unfamiliar with your work. Avoid long sentences and irrelevant information. Critically review your abstract with colleagues not familiar with your project. If they don't understand or agree with any portion of the abstract, rewrite it.

Define relevance: Is this material appropriate for the SIR Annual Meeting? If it is not immediately evident from your abstract, reword it to make its relevance clear. Use a sentence or two of background in the Purpose section to help the reader understand why your work is important.

Organize yourself: The Methods section should describe your methods for collecting and analyzing data. It should be presented in a logical, orderly fashion. Include your selection (inclusion/exclusion) criteria and data sources. Sample size calculations and other statistical validation methods should be described.

Be sure your numbers are accurate and consistent. Ensure that numbered subsets, when totaled, equal the correct overall population size. Always report the absolute number of observations made, not just percentages; otherwise, it is difficult to tell from the abstract how much work an author has really done. If a filter model trapped 75% of clots, was it three out of four, or 75 out of 100? Any discrepancy in total numbers, percentages, or calculations devalues the abstract significantly. Tables are accepted within the abstract. If appropriate, present more complicated data sets using a table for clarity. Carefully check your abstract for spelling and grammatical errors. Remember, if accepted, the abstract will be published as submitted.

Disclose: The strength of an abstract is increased when its weaknesses are disclosed by the authors. Avoid submitting multiple abstracts covering similar items, especially from a single database. Describe limitations, explain discrepancies and report all major complications. Any potential conflicts of interest and compliance with your institutional review board's (IRB) regulations should be disclosed.

Avoid hyperbole: Be sure that the conclusions you have reached are supported by the results. Do not speculate or editorialize. Your conclusions should answer only those questions stated in the Purpose. Abstracts lose points for exaggerating or overstating conclusions.