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Open Access Highly Accessed Editorial

The CARE (CAse REport) guidelines and the standardization of case reports

Richard A Rison1*, Michael R Kidd2 and Christian A Koch34

Author Affiliations

1 Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital Health Stroke Program, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles County Medical Center, 12401 Washington Boulevard, Whittier, CA 90602, USA

2 Faculty of Health Sciences, Flinders University, GPO Box 2100, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia

3 Department of Medicine, G. V (Sonny) Montgomery VA Medical Center, Jackson, MS 39216, USA

4 Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS 39216, USA

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Journal of Medical Case Reports 2013, 7:261  doi:10.1186/1752-1947-7-261

Published: 27 November 2013

Abstract

Case reports comprise the core of Journal of Medical Case Reports, are a time-honored tradition firmly established within the medical literature, and represent a growing importance of valuable clinical medical information in our modern information-flowing times. While there is already a body of published literature on how and when to write a case report and both Journal of Medical Case Reports and BioMed Central make known their own criteria, case report quality across all of the medical literature is still variable. Additionally, although health reporting agencies do have standardization guidelines for other aspects of health-care reporting, there has never been an organizational body responsible for international standardization of how to write a case report. With the newly-published CARE (CAse REport) guidelines, Gagnier and colleagues hope to change this. This editorial serves as a brief introduction to the CARE guidelines and briefly examines the proposed standardization of case reports. We invite feedback on the CARE guidelines from all of our readers and encourage their trial run implementation by our own case report authors.