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AMA Manual of Style: Medical Writing 101 

29th December 2011 Posted in Blog, Books, Medical Writers 0 Comments

Image for AMA Manual of Style for Medical Writers Library Addition

Knowing the expectations of good medical writing is essential for the success of the document.  The sourcebook for medical writing today is the AMA Manual of Style, which follows in the footsteps of many other style manuals available today – APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.  Within this book are the basics to creating a document that is not only effective, but also well-designed, helping readers of the document understand its purpose and long-term impact.

Within the AMA Manual of Style are several sections for easy reference:

  • Types of Articles
  • Manuscript Preparation
  • References
  • Visual Presentation of Data 
  • Ethical and Legal Considerations 
  • Editorial Assessment and Processing 
  •  Grammar 
  • Punctuation 
  • Plurals 
  • Capitalization 
  • Correct and Preferred Usage 
  • Non-English Words, Phrases, and Accent Marks 
  • Medical Indexes 
  • Abbreviations 
  • Nomenclature 
  • Eponyms 
  • Greek Letters 
  • Units of Measure 
  • Numbers and Percentages 
  • Study Design and Statistics 
  • Mathematical Composition 
  • Typography 
  • Manuscript Editing and Proofreading 
  • Glossary of Publishing Terms 
  • Resources

Being able to refer to certain sections will help in medical writing projects, but these sections can also help uncover the expectations of readers, even for those new to medical documentation.

Style manuals are crucial in the development of content, as well, with the authors needing to rely on these structures to determine whether their document is complete – or if it needs revisions. Medical technical writers can’t work effectively without this book, nor should they.  If a medical writer or healthcare organization is looking for one manual to add to their already-crammed reference shelves, this is the book that can help writers avoid mishaps.

Related topics:

Diagnosing the Medical Writer
Join the Club? American Medical Writers Association
The Science of Medical Writers: Making Medicine Easier to Swallow

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