Objective: This paper describes how and why to write a case report for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
Methods: PubMed, the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), and the Index to Chiropractic Literature were searched from 2000 through September 2006 using the following search terms: case report, authorship, peer review, and manuscript. Relevant manuscripts were retrieved and the results were used to update a previous narrative overview of the literature.
Discussion: Commensurate with the increased use of evidence-based health care and recent changes in publication requirements, new standards are expected of case reports. Case reports should present new information to the literature and be written succinctly. The types of case reports available are discussed. Steps for preparing a case report are described based upon the current available literature.
Conclusion: Case reports are important contributions to the health sciences literature. Proper preparation of this study design is necessary in order for it to be published. A self-evaluation check sheet for authors is included to assist in the writing process.