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April 2018

JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery—The Year in Review, 2017

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Washington University in St Louis School of Medicine, St Louis, Missouri
  • 2Editor, JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2018;144(4):291-292. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2017.3016

As I complete my second year as Editor of JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, I would like to take this opportunity to thank our authors, reviewers, members of the editorial board, and staff for the many contributions to the journal and to share our accomplishments. This past year, we received 822 submissions and published 94 Original Investigations, 35 Reviews, 34 opinion articles, and 11 Research Letters. In 2017, the acceptance rate for major submissions was 19%. The publication of opinion articles provides context to the original investigations and a forum for active dialogue in our specialty.

Some of the topics covered in 2017 included a comparison of alkaline water and Mediterranean diet vs proton pump inhibition for treatment of laryngopharyngeal reflux, natural history and tumor volume kinetics of papillary thyroid cancers, cognitive training for adults with bothersome tinnitus, association of iron deficiency anemia with hearing loss in US adults, association of ibuprofen use with severity of surgically treated posttonsillectomy hemorrhage, a consensus review and recommendation of optimal perioperative care in major head and neck cancer surgery with free flap reconstruction, a review of control of pain after tonsillectomy in children, and a systematic review of reconstructive techniques for saddle nose deformity in patients with granulomatosis with polyangiitis. A highlight of the year was our successful work with the American Head & Neck Society (AHNS) and simultaneous publication of 5 articles from their 2017 meeting in San Diego. We accepted 17 AHNS-associated articles, and with Neal Futran’s lead and outstanding support from the editorial and production staff in St Louis and Chicago, we were able to quickly move from review to publication.

The quality of our published articles continues to rise and is reflected in several different metrics. The impact factor of 2.95 and the immediacy index, or the average number of times an article is cited in the year it is published, of 0.56, continue to increase and lead all other general otolaryngology journals. Additional ways to measure the impact of the articles published in the journal include the article’s Altmetric score, which tracks the mention of the article in the mainstream media, online references managers, blogs, and social media. The Altmetric score is made available to authors immediately on publication. Of the top 50 articles in otolaryngology by Altmetric score in 2017, 32 (64%) were published in JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery. The articles with the top 3 Altmetric scores for 2017 are shown in the Table. Last year, there were more than 2500 media mentions of articles published in the journal. The ability of the JAMA Network media department to help authors disseminate and amplify their message is truly outstanding.

Table.  JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery Statistics for 2017
JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery Statistics for 2017

To ensure that important findings are made available quickly, our goal is rapid review and publication of worthy articles. To complete the peer review process, we rely on more than 645 peer reviewers from around the world.5 These reviewers graciously give of their time to complete their assigned manuscript reviews in a median time of 13 days. Their efforts have allowed JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery to maintain a median time from receipt of an original research report to acceptance of 86 days. To be as fair as possible to those who submit articles, we thoughtfully restrict the number of submitted articles that are sent out for peer review. Submitted articles that did not match the editorial goals of JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery were rejected without review in a median of 19 days. Our median time from receipt to publication was 185 days. All Original Investigations are freely available on the day of publication on the JAMA Network Reader and 12 months after publication on the journal’s website.

This past year we served even more readers. We provided our Table of Contents via email (eTOC) to 18 856 readers. This past year, there were approximately 1.9 million PDF downloads of our published articles. In 2016, JAMA and the JAMA Network launched a new website (http://www.jamaotolaryngology.com/) that has substantially improved the online experience for our readers. In 2017 the website had over 1.1 million visits, a 34% increase from 2016. In addition, nearly 2 million full-text article views were registered, which was a 21% increase from the previous year. I suspect most of you are reading this editorial online. The new website and the long-standing excellence in marketing and media relations provide unparalleled outreach for authors. I give thanks to Michael Johns III, MD, online editor, who has worked hard to increase our social media presence and multiply the number of author interviews available as audio podcasts. In 2017, we had 3871 Twitter and 5233 Facebook followers. More than 700 individuals claimed a credit for at least 1 weekly CME quiz.

This year marks the launch of JAMA Network Open.6JAMA Network Open is an online open access journal and is the newest member of the JAMA Network family of journals. JAMA Network Open seeks to publish original research articles, trial protocols, and invited commentaries on all aspects of clinical care, health policy, and global health across all health disciplines. Articles are evaluated according to the following criteria: material is original and timely, writing is clear, study methods are appropriate, data are valid, conclusions are reasonable and supported by the data, information is important, and topic has general interest. All research articles that are accepted for publication will be made free access on the journal website following payment of article processing charges and will be deposited in PubMed Central. All articles will also be made available to news media on the JAMA Network For the Media site. All accepted submissions undergo complete editing, formatting, graphics reproduction, and publication within 8 weeks of acceptance. Authors may submit articles directly to JAMA Network Open or, on rejection from JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, request transfer to JAMA Network Open without the need for any formatting changes or additional paperwork.

As Editor of the journal and with the support of Dorina Kallogjeri, MD (statistics editor), and the entire editorial board, we began a process to improve results reporting in the journal.4 The key parts of this initiative are to: (1) reduce the reliance on P values for reporting and interpreting results, (2) increase the use of effect size to help answer the question of how large of an effect was observed, (3) include the use of confidence intervals to help the readers understand the precision of the effect size estimate and whether the results are compatible with a clinically meaningful effect, and (4) appreciate the fact that no single study can define truth and the that the advancement of medical knowledge depends on the steady accumulation of information. We appreciate that for some authors this insistence on changes to results reporting created some consternation and delay in publication. However, we also value the many comments we receive from authors stating how the new results reporting methodology added value to their research. In the coming year, we will focus on increasing authors’ use of clinically meaningful measures of change in their results reporting to help the reader understand if the observed results are compatible with differences that a patient might recognize.

I wish to acknowledge the services of members of the editorial staff who have left in the past year and welcome their replacements. Albert L. Merati, MD (endoscopy editor), left to become the President of the American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery and Douglas E. Mattox, MD, has retired as CME editor, a position he held for more than 20 years. I thank both of them for their hard work and service to the journal. I welcome David Francis, MD, as the new endoscopy editor and David Poetker, MD, as the new CME editor. I thank the deputy editors Neal Futran, MD (head and neck), and Sukgi Choi, MD (pediatrics), associate editors Timothy L. Smith, MD (general), and Heather Weinreich, MD (otology), Justin Bishop, MD (pathology), Ashok Srinivasan, MBBS (radiology), and Dorina Kallogjeri, MD (statistics), for their continued work for the journal.

I invite all of you to sign up for email Table of Contents at http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology, follow us on Twitter @JAMAOto, or friend us on Facebook.

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Article Information

Corresponding Author: Jay F. Piccirillo, MD, Department of Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, Washington University in St Louis School of Medicine, 660 S Euclid Ave, PO Box 8115, Clinical Outcomes Research Offices, St Louis, MO 63110 (piccirilloj@ent.wustl.edu).

Published Online: March 15, 2018. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2017.3016

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: The author has completed and submitted the ICMJE Form for Disclosure of Potential Conflicts of Interest and none were reported.

Zalvan  CH, Hu  S, Greenberg  B, Geliebter  J.  A comparison of alkaline water and mediterranean diet vs proton pump inhibition for treatment of laryngopharyngeal reflux.  JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2017;143(10):1023-1029.PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
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