Postgraduate medical journal (Postgrad Med)

Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group

Journal description

Published on behalf of the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine, Postgraduate Medical Journal aims to: Help doctors in training to acquire the necessary skills to enable them to deliver the highest possible standards of patient care; Help trainers to develop suitable training programmes for their trainees; Allow doctors, once training is completed, to maintain these high standards by a process of continuing medical education; As well as editorials and original articles, Postgraduate Medical Journal includes up to six review articles in each issue and has a Self-Assessment Corner.

Current impact factor: 1.45

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 1.448
2013 Impact Factor 1.549
2012 Impact Factor 1.608
2011 Impact Factor 1.939
2010 Impact Factor 1.605
2009 Impact Factor 1.384
2008 Impact Factor 1.587
2007 Impact Factor 1.218
2006 Impact Factor 1.093
2005 Impact Factor 0.944
2004 Impact Factor 0.807
2003 Impact Factor 0.676
2002 Impact Factor 0.552
2001 Impact Factor 0.441
2000 Impact Factor 0.339
1999 Impact Factor 0.402
1998 Impact Factor 0.478
1997 Impact Factor 0.496
1996 Impact Factor 0.572
1995 Impact Factor 0.442
1994 Impact Factor 0.448
1993 Impact Factor 0.357
1992 Impact Factor 0.325

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 1.76
Cited half-life >10.0
Immediacy index 0.39
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.56
Website Postgraduate Medical Journal website
Other titles Postgraduate medical journal
ISSN 1469-0756
OCLC 66425979
Material type Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

BMJ Publishing Group

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • On author's personal website, institutional website or institutional repository
    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to publisher version
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Authors retain copyright
    • If funding agency rules apply, authors may post articles in PubMed Central and mirror sites, website, institutional website or institutional repository
    • On PubMed Central after 12 months embargo from print publication, or as required by funding agency
    • On social networks such as ResearchGate and Mendeley after 6 months embargo from print publication
    • Publisher last contacted on 08/12/2014
    • Publisher last reviewed on 29/06/2015
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Anthracyclines are commonly used chemotherapeutic agents with proven efficacy in such malignancies as breast cancer, Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphomas. These agents are associated with irreversible accumulative dose-related cardiomyopathy. Many agents have been examined to reduce cardiotoxicity risk. Aims: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the efficacy of β-blockers and angiotensin antagonists to prevent early-onset anthracyclines-induced left ventricular dysfunction and cardiac events. Methods: Relevant articles were searched in PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane database of systematic reviews up to July 2015. Eligible studies were limited to randomised controlled trials comparing the efficacy of cardioprotective agents (β-blocker and angiotensin antagonist) with control (either no treatment or placebo) in adult patients (age >18 years) treated with anthracyclines-based regimens. Results: Pooled analysis showed an association of β-blockers and/or angiotensin antagonists treatment with higher post-chemotherapy left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) of 64.03% compared with 57.48% for control treatment. The mean difference estimate (95% CI) was 6.06% (0.54 to 11.58), p=0.03, with significant heterogeneity, I(2) (95% CI)=96% (82.7 to 109.3). Though the point estimate for the relative rate of cardiac events was lower in the experimental arm, the difference was not statistically significant. In an exploratory subgroup analysis, the benefit of experimental agents on LVEF preservation was prominent in patients treated with higher accumulative dose of anthracyclines, but not in the lower dose group. Conclusions: β-Blockers and angiotensin antagonists treatments were associated with better LVEF preservation, and the benefit was prominent in patients treated with higher anthracyclines accumulative dose. Unexplained heterogeneity remains, indicating the need for more controlled studies. This analysis provides some support for the routine use of β-blockers or angiotensin antagonists in patients undergoing anthracyclines treatment, especially when higher accumulative dose is expected.
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133535
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    ABSTRACT: Non-convulsive status epilepticus (NCSE) presents with minimal seizure activity clinically, but with evidence on EEG. It is a recognised cause of delirium in older people, but prevalence estimates vary widely. As delirium is a common presentation in older people and because NCSE is potentially reversible, an improved diagnostic ability in this group could be highly beneficial. EEG testing is required to make a definitive diagnosis, but this may be difficult due to access to testing, patient adherence and result interpretation. NCSE has two commonly recognised forms: complex partial status epilepticus (CPSE) and absence status epilepticus (ASE). Clinical features associated with NCSE in older people presenting with confusion include a reduction in level of arousal; aphasia or interrupted speech; myoclonus or subtle jerking; staring; automatisms; perseveration or echolalia; increased tone; nystagmus or eye deviation; emotional lability; disinhibition and anosagnosia. Risk factors include female sex, a history of epilepsy or a tonic-clonic seizure around the time of onset, and recent discontinuation of benzodiazepines. A practical approach to the diagnosis of NCSE in older people is suggested based upon the presence of clinical features suggestive of NCSE and local access to EEG testing.
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133537
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    ABSTRACT: Ninety years ago, the first issue of the Postgraduate Medical Journal published a review of an article written by Mr Robert Lindsay-Rea, a consultant ophthalmic surgeon in the Western Ophthalmic Hospital and an oculist in the West End Hospital for Nervous Diseases, entitled "A preliminary report on the treatment of keratitis". Today, microbial keratitis remains an important cause of avoidable visual impairment in the world. The aetiology of microbial keratitis has changed greatly over the past century due to the discovery of antibiotics, improvement in sanitation and education, the rising trend of contact lens wear and increased air travel. Significant advances have also been made in our understanding and management of this important disorder. This article highlights some of these changes and discusses the current management and research.
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133323
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    ABSTRACT: The influence of technology in medical workplace learning is explored by focusing on three uses: m-learning (notably apps), simulation and social media. Smartphones with point-of-care tools (such as textbooks, drug guides and medical calculators) can support workplace learning and doctors' decision-making. Simulations can help develop technical skills and team interactions, and 'in situ' simulations improve the match between the virtual and the real. Social media (wikis, blogs, networking, YouTube) heralds a more participatory and collaborative approach to knowledge development. These uses of technology are related to Kolb's learning cycle and Eraut's intentions of informal learning. Contentions and controversies with these technologies exist. There is a problem with the terminology commonly adopted to describe the use of technology to enhance learning. Using learning technology in the workplace changes the interaction with others and raises issues of professionalism and etiquette. Lack of regulation makes assessment of app quality a challenge. Distraction and dependency are charges levelled at smartphone use in the workplace and these need further research. Unless addressed, these and other challenges will impede the benefits that technology may bring to postgraduate medical education. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-132809
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    ABSTRACT: Childhood obesity is a serious and urgent public health problem. In the last 10 years, there has been a concerted effort in the USA and globally to develop and implement educational, medical and public health interventions designed to attenuate its growth. The success of these efforts was probably responsible for the plateau in the prevalence rate of childhood obesity noted in the last two years. While the attenuation of the overall prevalence of childhood obesity is promising, data from the same cohort reveal a concerning upward trend in the number of children with severe obesity. The consequences of severe childhood obesity can be devastating. When compared to their moderately obese peers, children with severe obesity are at greater risk for adult obesity, early atherosclerosis, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, fatty liver disease and premature death. The determinants for severe obesity include the same lifestyle, environmental, familial and societal risk factors reported for overweight or obesity. While all these risk factors must be screened for, genetic influences are distinct considerations that may have greater bearing especially with early-onset obesity. Treatments for severe childhood obesity include lifestyle intervention, specialised low-calorie diets and bariatric surgery. Outcomes of these treatments vary, with bariatric surgery clearly the most successful of the three for both short-term and long-term weight loss. Severe obesity in children and adolescents remains a challenging health condition. The enormous medical, emotional and financial burden these children and their families endure signals an urgent need to further investigate and standardise treatment modalities and improve outcomes. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-133033
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    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133679
  • Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133656
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    ABSTRACT: Left atrial appendage (LAA) occlusion for stroke and thromboembolism prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) represents a significant advancement in the field of cardiovascular disease. Prevention and avoidance of the devastating consequences of thromboembolic complications from AF continues to be central in the management of these patients. The role of LAA as a nidus for thrombus formation is well documented. Multiple approaches to exclude the LAA from the circulation either percutaneously or surgically have been described and are undergoing testing. Although pharmacological therapy for stroke prevention remains the cornerstone of treatment, device and surgical exclusion of the LAA have proven to be viable alternatives in carefully selected patients. Even though current evidence show that LAA occlusion is safe and effective, approval and adoption of this strategy has been quite difficult due to paucity of randomised clinical trial data on the risk and benefit ratio, cost effectiveness and the issues of procedural risk as well as longer-term outcome. This review aims to provide an update on the current status of LAA occlusion, specifically looking at interpretation of current clinical data, available techniques and devices, issues with current devices and future direction. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 09/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-306255rep
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    ABSTRACT: In the era of widespread use of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) for both primary and secondary prevention of sudden cardiac death, a significant proportion of patients experience episodes of multiple ventricular tachycardia/fibrillation over a short period of time requiring device interventions. The episodes are termed ventricular arrhythmia (VA) or electrical storms. VA storm is a tragic experience for patients, with many psychological consequences. Current management for VA storms remains complex. Acutely, administration of β-blockers, amiodarone and sedation or intubation is generally required to suppress sympathetic tone. Interventional treatment includes catheter ablation and sympathetic blockade by left cardiac sympathetic denervation. Strategies to modify autonomic tone to suppress VAs are the rationale of various novel interventions that have been published in recent studies. All patients with VA storm should be considered for transfer to an experienced high-volume tertiary centre for evaluation and treatment to prevent further recurrence of VA storm. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133550
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    ABSTRACT: Puerperal sepsis is one of the five leading causes of maternal mortality worldwide, and accounts for 15% of all maternal deaths. The WHO defined puerperal sepsis in 1992 as an infection of the genital tract occurring at any time between the rupture of membranes or labour and the 42nd day post partum; in which, two or more of the following are present: pelvic pain, fever, abnormal vaginal discharge and delay in the reduction of the size of the uterus. At the same time, the WHO introduced the term puerperal infections, which also include non-genital infections in the obstetric population. Recent epidemiological data shows that puerperal sepsis and non-genital tract infections are a major area of concern. In puerperal sepsis, group A streptococcus (GAS) is the most feared pathogen. Up to 30% of the population are asymptomatic carriers of GAS. GAS commonly causes throat infections. Women who died from GAS-positive sepsis all had signs of a throat infection themselves or one of their family members suffered from a throat infection. The pathway of infection is from the hands of the pregnant women or the mother to her perineum. In non-genital tract infections, influenza viruses and the HIV pandemic in the developing part of the world are responsible for many maternal deaths, and demand our attention. The physiological changes of pregnancy and the puerperium can obscure the signs and symptoms of sepsis in the obstetric population. A high level of suspicion is, therefore, needed in the care for the sick pregnant patient. If sepsis is suspected, timely administration of antibiotics, sepsis care bundles, multidisciplinary discussion and early involvement of senior staff members are important to improve outcome. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133475
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    ABSTRACT: Preventable harm is one of the top six health problems in the developed world. Developing patient safety skills and knowledge among advanced trainee doctors is critical. Clinical supervision is the main form of training for advanced trainees. The use of supervision to develop patient safety competence has not been established. To establish the use of clinical supervision and other workplace training to develop non-technical patient safety competency in advanced trainee doctors. Keywords, synonyms and subject headings were used to search eight electronic databases in addition to hand-searching of relevant journals up to 1 March 2014. Titles and abstracts of retrieved publications were screened by two reviewers and checked by a third. Full-text articles were screened against the eligibility criteria. Data on design, methods and key findings were extracted. Clinical supervision documents were assessed against components common to established patient safety frameworks. Findings from the reviewed articles and document analysis were collated in a narrative synthesis. Clinical supervision is not identified as an avenue for embedding patient safety skills in the workplace and is consequently not evaluated as a method to teach trainees these skills. Workplace training in non-technical patient safety skills is limited, but one-off training courses are sometimes used. Clinical supervision is the primary avenue for learning in postgraduate medical education but the most overlooked in the context of patient safety learning. The widespread implementation of short courses is not matched by evidence of rigorous evaluation. Supporting supervisors to identify teaching moments during supervision and to give weight to non-technical skills and technical skills equally is critical. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; 91(1080). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-133130
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    ABSTRACT: Health risk assessments provide an opportunity to emphasise health promotion and disease prevention for individuals and populations at large. A key component of health risk assessments is the detailed collection of family health history information. This information is helpful in determining risk both for common chronic conditions and more rare diseases as well. While the concept of health risk assessments has been around since the Framingham Heart Study was launched in the 1950s, and such assessments are commonly performed in the workplace today, the US healthcare system has been slow to embrace them and the emphasis on prevention that they represent. Before wider implementation of health risk assessments within healthcare can be seen, several concerns must be addressed: (1) provider impact, (2) patient impact, (3) validity of patient-entered data and (4) health outcomes effect. Here, we describe recent developments in health risk assessment design that are helping to address these issues. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-133195
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    ABSTRACT: Cigarette smoking is a well-established risk factor for the development of coronary heart disease. However, the relationship between smoking and acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) is less well described. To determine the relative risk of acute STEMI in smokers and ex-smokers, compared with individuals who had never smoked. This observational study studied all patients with STEMI undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in South Yorkshire, UK from 1 January 2009 to 6 April 2012. Additional contemporary demographical data for the South Yorkshire population, supplied by the Office for National Statistics, allowed derivation of the incidence rate of STEMI in South Yorkshire-both overall and stratified by smoking status. Incidence rate ratios and population attributable risk (PAR) were calculated to quantify STEMI risk. There were 1715 STEMIs in 1680 patients during the study period. Smoking status was obtained in 96.2% patients. The prevalence of smoking was 47.3% in patients with STEMI and 22.0% in the general population. In patients with STEMI, smokers were ∼10 years younger, mean (SD) 57.2 (11.1) years, than never-smokers, 66.4 (12.1) years, and ex-smokers, 67.9 (11.9) years. The age-standardised incident rate ratio of STEMI was 5.2 (4.5-6.1) for current smokers and 1.1 (1.0-1.3) for ex-smokers, with the reference group being never-smokers for both. Almost 50% of STEMIs were attributable to smoking (PAR=48.3%). Cigarette smoking is associated with a fivefold increased risk of STEMI. Smoking cessation reduced this risk to a level similar to never-smokers. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2015-133269
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    ABSTRACT: Digoxin has been a key therapeutic for heart failure and atrial tachyarrhythmias for over 200 years following Withering's groundbreaking work depicting the therapeutic benefit of the common botanical foxglove in his 1785 monograph. The use of digoxin preceded any randomised evidence or even basic understanding of its mechanism of action. Over the past two decades, there has been mounting evidence further challenging the safety and efficacy of digoxin, while multiple other therapies for both heart failure and atrial tachyarrhythmias have proven to be more effective and safe. Altogether, digoxin still has an important role in contemporary pharmacotherapeutics, though its role remains controversial and should be reserved for selective patients and clinical situations, with careful attention to serum concentrations. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
    Postgraduate medical journal 08/2015; 91(1079). DOI:10.1136/postgradmedj-2014-132937