How to format your references using the Patient Safety in Surgery citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Patient Safety in Surgery. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
1. Swartz KJ. Sensing voltage across lipid membranes. Nature. 2008;456:891–7.
A journal article with 2 authors
1. Yan ZB, Liu J-M. Coexistence of high performance resistance and capacitance memory based on multilayered metal-oxide structures. Sci Rep. 2013;3:2482.
A journal article with 3 authors
1. Kaochar S, Paek AL, Weinert T. Genetics. Replication error amplified. Science. 2010;329:911–3.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
1. Coburn PS, Pillar CM, Jett BD, Haas W, Gilmore MS. Enterococcus faecalis senses target cells and in response expresses cytolysin. Science. 2004;306:2270–2.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
1. Marvin S. Dictionary of Scientific Principles. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2010.
An edited book
1. Hoff JT, Keep RF, Xi G, Hua Y, editors. Brain Edema XIII. Vienna: Springer; 2006.
A chapter in an edited book
1. Webster M. Grenz Ray and Ultrasoft X-Ray Therapy. In: Panizzon RG, Seegenschmiedt MH, editors. Radiation Treatment and Radiation Reactions in Dermatology. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2015. p. 73–87.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Patient Safety in Surgery.

Blog post
1. Andrew E. Science Or Snake Oil: Can A Detox Actually Cleanse Your Liver? [Internet]. IFLScience. IFLScience; 2016 [cited 2018 Oct 30]. Available from:


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
1. Government Accountability Office. Federal Research and Development Budget. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 1979 Apr. Report No.: 094379.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
1. Karyekar M. Translating observation into narration: The “sentimental” anthropology of Georg Forster (1754-1794) [Doctoral dissertation]. [Bloomington, IN]: Indiana University; 2014.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
1. Pilon M. View at Practice Courts an Intimate but Possibly Endangered Perk. New York Times. 2012 Sep 1;D4.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titlePatient Safety in Surgery
AbbreviationPatient Saf. Surg.
ISSN (online)1754-9493
ScopeAnesthesiology and Pain Medicine
Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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