Ethical policies


The journal follows the best practice guidelines described by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Here we detail briefly all points. For more information, visit please the official website on Core practices from COPE.


Protection of people and animals

All studies that involve data, procedures, treatments, etc. in humans must have written authorization from an ethics committee of the participating institution, which must be attached to the manuscripts submitted on the platform, in addition to following the ethical guidelines of the World Medical Association and the Declaration of Helsinki. available at: Authors must state in the section "Methods" that the procedures used in patients and controls have been carried out after obtaining an authorization by the ethics committee of their institution.



Authors are responsible for following the protocols established by their respective health centers to access the data of the clinical files in order to carry out this type of scientific research, for which they must declare compliance with this requirement. The author has the obligation to guarantee that he is in possession of the written informed consent for the participation of each subject in the study. This document must be attached to the platform of the site. The authors should mention in the section "Methods" that the procedures performed on the study subjects were carried out after obtaining an informed consent.



The corresponding author is responsible for ensuring the right to privacy of patients by protecting their identity both in the text of the article and in the images. Do not use names, initials or hospital medical record numbers (or any other type of data irrelevant to the investigation that could identify the patient) or in the text or in the photographs; unless such information is essential for scientific purposes. In such cases, it may be included in the article provided that the patient or his or her parent or legal guardian provides written informed consent for its publication.



Authors must declare any funding sources involved in the development of the research or the publication.


Everyone listed as an author should meet our criteria for authorship. Everyone who meets our criteria for authorship must be listed as an author.

The journal follows the criteria established by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals. The requirements for authorship are:

- Substantial contributions to the conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of the study data that has resulted in the manuscript.

- Drafting the article or revising it critically.

- Final approval of the version to be published.

- Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

Authors must meet all four conditions in order to be listed. The correspondence author is responsible for ensuring that all co-authors meet the requirements for authorship. Each author agrees that the corresponding author will be responsible for submitting the manuscript to the journal. By submitting this manuscript, each of the authors indicates that they have had full access to all the data in this study and assume full and public responsibility for the integrity and accuracy of the data analysis.

Once the manuscript is submitted, it will not be possible to make changes in the order and number of authors, so all issues related to authorship must be solved before sending the manuscript for the first time.

In case of collective authorship, the names of the writers or the ones responsible for the work followed by "and the Group ..." will be included when all the members of the group consider themselves co-authors of the work. If the name of the group is to be included, even if not all of its members are considered co-authors, the responsible authors will be mentioned followed by "on behalf of the Group ..." or "by the Group ...". In any case, the names and institutions of the members of the group will be included in an attachment at the end of the manuscript.
Contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be mentioned in the Acknowledgments. It is expected that those being acknowledged have given their permission to be named.

The journal declines any responsibility on possible conflicts derived from the authorship of the works that are published in it.


Conflicts of interest

There is a conflict of interest when the author had or has economic or personal relationships that could be considered as a cause of bias or influence the results of the study. The potential conflict of interest exists regardless of whether the authors consider that these relationships influence their scientific criteria or not. The authors will describe, in the cover letter and in the additional information section of the platform, any financial or personal relationship that they had or have, at the time of writing or sending the manuscript, with people or institutions and that could give rise to a conflict of interest related to the manuscript that is submitted for publication. What is declared will be recorded in the printed and digital journal.


Rights procurement

Authors must declare that the content of their manuscript is original and that it has not been published previously, nor has it been sent or submitted for consideration in any other publication format, either in its entirety or in any of its parts. The opposite constitutes a serious breach of scientific ethics. In the same way, authors who reproduce previously published materials (text, tables or figures) in their article are responsible for obtaining the appropriate permits to reproduce those materials in our journal. The corresponding author must obtain written authorization from the copyright’s holder of such materials and send a copy to our journal.



The journal does not accept previously published material and will not consider for publication manuscripts that are sent simultaneously to other journals, nor redundant or duplicate publications, that is, articles that substantially overlap another already published, printed or electronic media. Authors must inform in the cover letter about previous postings or publications of the same work, in whole or in part, that may be considered redundant or duplicate publication. It is necessary to quote and include the reference(s) of these previous publications in the new manuscript. These restrictions are not applicable to published abstracts of communications, papers or conferences presented at national or international scientific meetings.

If plagiarism is detected during the peer review process, the manuscript may be rejected. If plagiarism is detected after publication, we may issue a correction or retract the paper, as appropriate. We reserve the right to inform authors' institutions about plagiarism detected either before or after publication. 

We expect that editors and reviewers will be vigilant in their evaluation of PLOS submissions and will notify the journal about any plagiarism identified.



Corrections and retractions

The journal publishes corrections, retractions, and expressions of concern as appropriate, and as quickly as possible. We follow the ICMJE and COPE guidelines where applicable.

The journal also uses CrossMark service. By applying the CrossMark logo to each publication, the journal is committed to maintaining the most up-to-date version and to alerting readers to changes if and when they occur.


Statement on the use of generative artificial intelligence in academic and scientific literature

The recommendations stipulated by the Committee on Publication Ethics regarding the use of artificial intelligence in scientific research writing, as well as on the attribution of authorship of the manuscripts as established, will be strictly followed.

Further relevant information:


- JAMA Network

- COPE Discussion document “Artificial intelligence (AI) in decision making”