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Page Layout & Formatting | Manuscript Sections | Digital Image Guide | Motion Image Guide

These templates include the required formatting and instructions for content:

Page Layout and Formatting

  • Files must be submitted in Microsoft Word .docx format or created in a word processing program that supports the .docx format. Do not submit PDF files.
  • Set paragraph alignment at “Left” and line spacing at “Double” throughout (except for the title page, which should be set at “Single”).
  • Set page size at “Letter” (8½″ by 11″), with 1″ margins.
  • Set the font to Arial, 12-point type.
  • Number pages consecutively, beginning with the title page, in the lower right-hand corner.
  • Do not use line-numbering.

Manuscript Sections

A. Title Page
  • One single-spaced page (when possible)
  • An informative title consisting of 20 or fewer words (no abbreviations)
  • Full name and highest relevant academic degree and/or certification of each author (limit 2 per author)
  • Note: Do not include titles (such as Professor) or associations (such as FACC).
  • A numbered list of department and institution names where each author completed the work (use superscripted numbers after the author names to link them to their affiliations)
  • Name of one author who is designated as the corresponding author, with a complete postal address, telephone number, and e-mail address
  • Name of a senior author and contact information for use in an emergency

IMPORTANT: The article title and author names on the title page MUST match how they are entered into the submission system (Editorial Manager) at submission. In addition, the corresponding author designated on Editorial Manager during the submission process MUST match the corresponding author on the title page.

B. Abstract, Keywords, Key Points, and Abbreviations List


  • Start the Abstract at the top of page 2.
  • State the purpose of the study, basic procedures (study subjects or experimental animals; observational and analytic methods), main findings (specific data and statistical significance), and conclusions, emphasizing new and important aspects of the work. Do not include information or data that do not appear in the text.
  • Adhere to the word count limits according to Article Type.
  • Do not include abbreviations other than standard units of measurement.


  • Add 3 to 10 keywords or phrases that will assist in cross-indexing the article. Use terms from the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) list available from MEDLINE/PubMed; other terms may be used if suitable MeSH terms are not yet established.

Key points

  • List 3 to 5 bullet points, briefly stating the purpose of the study, one or two main findings, and the takeaway message.

Abbreviations and Acronyms

  • Limit the use of abbreviations and acronyms to the extent possible.
  • If a term is used 3 or fewer times, do not abbreviate it. The editors will determine whether exceptions are needed.
  • In a 2-column table, alphabetize all abbreviations and acronyms that appear in the paper in column 1. Spell out each term in column 2.
  • Standard units of measurement do not need to be spelled out.

C. Text (Content and Style)

The Texas Heart Institute Journal follows the guidelines in the AMA Manual of Style: Christiansen S, Iverson C, Flanagin A, et al. AMA Manual of Style: A Guide for Authors and Editors. 11th ed. Oxford University Press; 2020.

  • References to Drugs
    • Use generic names of drugs unless the specific trade name is relevant.
    • State the form in which the drug was used (salt or base), the amount given in relation to body weight, and the route of administration; if injected, state the volume and rate of injection.
    • State the frequency and the time of additional doses.
    • Include units of measure for all drugs.
  • Manufacturing Information
    • Credit suppliers of drugs, equipment, and other materials mentioned in the paper in parentheses at first mention.
    • Give the specific product name, model number (if applicable), and company name.
  • Methods
    • Present methods in sufficient detail to enable repetition by other investigators.
    • Cite references for published methods or statistical methods (as needed). Note: Lengthy detailed processes and procedures can be submitted in a supplement.
    • Include the statistical program and version used.
    • State the P value that was considered statistically significant.
  • Results
    • Present both positive and relevant negative results.
  • Numbers
    • Provide exact numbers when possible; for example, “87 of 137 patients (63.5%)” is preferable to stating the percentage alone.
    • Do not spell out numbers except at the beginning of a sentence.
  • Repetition
    • Summarize in the text, but do not repeat, data presented in tables and figures.
    • In most cases, detailed data from the Results section do not need to be repeated in the Discussion.
  • Abbreviations
    • Avoid using abbreviations in the title, in the abstract, in headings, or at the beginning of a sentence. In general, keep abbreviations to a minimum.
    • Spell out abbreviations on first use.
  • Footnotes
    • Type footnotes, denoted with an asterisk, at the bottom of the page on which they are cited (do not confuse footnotes with references).
    • Footnotes that contain information from articles that have been submitted but not accepted should be cited as “unpublished observations.” Written permission from the source should be provided (see Written Permissions)
  • Units of Measurement and Symbols
    • Measurements of length, height, weight, and volume should be reported in metric units; temperatures, in degrees Celsius (°C); blood pressures, in millimeters of mercury (mmHg); and hematologic and clinical chemistry, in terms of the International System of Units (SI).

D. Acknowledgments

Acknowledged persons must email [email protected], indicating agreement to be acknowledged.

E. References

Cite original sources when possible. Small numbers of references to key original papers will often serve just as well as more-exhaustive lists.

  • Start the reference section at the top of a new page.
  • Cite and number references consecutively as they appear in the text. Do not use the automatic numbering feature in your word processing program. Type reference numbers manually.
  • References first cited in tables or figures should be numbered so that they will be in sequence with references cited in the text.
  • Place reference citations immediately after the term or phrase to which they are relevant.
  • Apply superscript formatting to citations, without parentheses or brackets.
  • Place the citations immediately after periods and commas (no space after punctuation).
  • Indicate ranges of citations with a hyphen (for example, 1-5).
  • Use commas without spaces between citations (examples: 1,2 or 1,3-5,10).
  • Double-check all references for accuracy, completeness, and duplication.

Our reference style is similar to that of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

  • List all authors up to 6. For 7 or more, list the first 3 and add “et al.”
  • For journal articles, do not add spaces between the year, volume, issue, and page numbers.
    Example: 2007;115(19):2497-2505.
  • List inclusive page numbers for journal articles and chapters in books.


1. Standard Journal Article
Patel KV, Segar MW, Lavie CJ, et al. Diabetes Status Modifies the Association Between Different Measures of Obesity and Heart Failure Risk Among Older Adults: A Pooled Analysis of Community-Based NHLBI Cohorts. Circulation. 2022;145(4):268-278.

2. Chapter in a Book
Wu EL, Kleinheyer M, Ündar A. Pulsatile vs. continuous flow. In: Gregory S, Stevens M, Fraser JF, editors. Mechanical circulatory and respiratory support. London UK: Academic Press; 2017. p. 379-406.

3. Abstract in a Journal Supplement
Loor G, Warnecke G, Villavicencio M, et al. Results of the OCS Lung EXPAND International Trial using portable normothermic OCS lung perfusion system (OCS) to recruit and evaluate extended criteria donor (ECD) lungs [abstract]. J Heart Lung Transplant. 2018;37(4 Suppl):S147.

4. Internet Journal Article
American Society of Anesthesiologists. Continuum of depth of sedation: definition of general anesthesia and levels of sedation/analgesia Published October 13, 1999. Updated October 23, 2019; Accessed December 26, 2021.

5. Papers accepted but not yet published
Add the journal title and “In press.” Unpublished personal observations and personal communications are not acceptable as references but may be included in the text as footnotes, denoted with an asterisk (see Footnotes)

F. Tables

Tables must be typed and editable (that is, do not insert an image of a table into the manuscript). Avoid merely repeating data from tables in the text

  • Cite tables consecutively in the text with Roman numerals (Table I, Table II, Table III)
  • Each table should appear on a separate page.
  • At the top of each table, add the table number and a descriptive title.
  • Rows in tables can be single-spaced.
  • Provide exact P values in the table.
  • Add this information at the bottom of the table:
    • List all abbreviations (except for units of measure) in alphabetical order, and define what they mean (AAA, abdominal aortic aneurysm; EVAR, endovascular aneurysm repair; OR, odds ratio).
    • Identify statistical measures of variations, such as standard deviation or standard error of the mean, and state the P value that was considered statistically significant, if applicable.
  • References in tables must be part of the consecutive numbering system in the text. For example, if references 1 through 6 have been cited in the text, and 4 new references are cited in the table, the references in the table would be 7, 8, 9, and 10. Numbering in the text would then resume with reference 11.
  • In tables that include data from previous studies, place the studies in chronologic order by date of publication.
  • Example
    Lip GY, et al6 (2010)
    Olesen JB, et al18 (2011)
    Singer DE, et al20 (2013)
  • If tables or data are not original to you, identify the source and supply Written Permission to use the data, whether from a published or unpublished source.

G. Figure Legends
  • Figure legends should be double-spaced and be started at the top of a new page.
  • Number figures sequentially, with Arabic numbers, corresponding to the order of mention in the text (Fig. 1, Fig. 2, Fig. 3).
  • Add a detailed description of each figure.
  • Describe each image in a multipart figure (that is, for parts 1A, 1B, and 1C).
  • Mention the type of image (examples: transesophageal echocardiogram or computed tomogram, with the anatomical view, when applicable; electrocardiogram; Kaplan-Meier curve; box and whisker plot).
  • Define all labels (symbols, arrows, abbreviations) on the figure.
  • Do not paste copies of images in the manuscript document.
  • For photomicrographs, mention the staining method and magnification level (example: H & E, orig. ×200) and scale bar measurements (example: scale bar = 200 µm).
  • Cite the original source and submit Written Permission from the copyright holder to reproduce previously published figures. This requirement also applies to these items:
    • Images from manufacturers (such as diagrams and photographs of equipment)
    • Photographs provided by courtesy of personal colleagues and friends

Digital Image Guide

The Texas Heart Institute Journal requires that digital artwork be prepared according to professional standards. Digital files must meet Journal requirements to be accepted for publication.

  • Cite each figure in the text in consecutive order.
  • Avoid photographs of patients. When they are included, the subjects must not be identifiable (masking their eyes is inadequate).
  • Figures should not include any written patient identification, including names, initials, and hospital numbers.
  • Photos or illustrations that can reveal a patient’s identity must be accompanied by written permission to use the photograph; moreover, the patient should be shown the manuscript and told that it will be available on the Internet. See our Privacy and Confidentiality policy.

A. Requirements
  • Scan high-quality original images at the correct resolution (see specific instructions below).
  • Submit each figure as a separate file.
    Note: Multipart figures, such as Fig. 1A and 1B, must be submitted separately.
  • Number each figure according to the order of mention in the text.
  • Include the corresponding author’s last name and figure number in the figure file names (example: Smith1).
  • Do not add “A, B, C” labels to multipart figures; instead, follow our standard naming convention (Smith2A, Smith2B, Smith2C).
  • For each figure with labels (arrows, abbreviations, callouts), submit a copy without labels (Smith3-labeled and Smith3-unlabeled).
    IMPORTANT: When you upload the files to the submission system (Editorial Manager), all the unlabeled figures should be placed at the end of the file list.


  • Upsample images.
  • Download images from the internet, scan images from printed pages, or capture a screen from your computer monitor.
  • Copy/paste images into other file types (examples: .doc or .ppt).

B. Diagnostic Images
  • Types of diagnostic images include echocardiograms, X-rays, angiograms, and computed tomographic scans.
  • Scan or export high-quality original at 960 pixels wide (300 dpi at 3.2 inches wide).

C. Electrocardiograms
  • Scan or export high-quality original at 3,840 pixels wide (1,200 dpi at 3.2 inches wide).
  • Select grayscale; do not scan in index color or black and white.

D. Photographs and Photomicrographs
  • Scan or export high-quality original at 960 pixels wide (300 dpi at 3.2 inches wide).
  • If color, select RGB color mode.

E. Line Art: Drawings
  • Scan or export high-quality original at 3,840 pixels wide (1,200 dpi at 3.2 inches wide).
  • Select grayscale or RGB; do not scan in index color or black and white.

F. Statistical Graphs
  • If you used a statistical program to generate graphs, save or export them into EPS format. Do not paste images of graphs into EPS files.

For example, if you used SPSS for the statistical analysis, follow these steps to create EPS files.

  1. Go to File > Export, which opens the Export Output window.
  2. Under “Document: Type,” select “None (Graphics Only)” from the drop-down list.
  3. Under “Graphics: Type,” select “EPS” from the drop-down list.
  4. Click OK.

  • Option: If you entered data into Microsoft Excel to create the graphs, submit them as fully editable PowerPoint (.pptx) files, along with the Excel data.

Motion Image Guide

  • Motion images may be included to supplement articles published in the Journal.
  • Movie or animation files are required for motion images. All files submitted are subject to conversion and optimization for online use before publication.
  • Each motion image must be submitted with a single frame (“still” image) taken directly from it.
  • The still image must be included as a consecutively numbered figure in the manuscript text, and the movie must be cited with it (example: Figure 2, Movie 1). This information must also be added to the figure legend.
  • The figure legend can provide additional information about the movie contents: “The supplemental motion image also shows…”
  • Do not add labels to the motion image.
  • Make sure that no identifying information is included in the motion image.

A. Quality
  • Movie files must be of the highest possible quality. Files should be saved uncompressed or with the least amount of compression possible.

B. Length
  • Movies should be between 5 and 30 seconds
  • Diagnostic images should show at least 5 cardiac cycles.

C. Accepted movie formats
  • MPEG-4 (.mp4)
    Note: Preferred format
  • Microsoft Audio/Video Interlaced (.avi)
  • Apple QuickTime (.mov)
  • MPEG (.mpg)

D. Accepted animation format
  • Compuserve GIF (.gif)

Written Permission

Authors are responsible for obtaining written permissions upon manuscript submission or shortly thereafter if they plan to include any of the following:

  • Previously published materials (contact copyright holder)
  • Personal observations and personal communications other than those of the authors (include direct quotation with signature of researcher, along with the month and year of observation or communication)
  • Names of contributors other than the authors, as an acknowledgment (which might imply endorsement of your data and conclusions)
  • Photographs of human subjects
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