An abstract is a condensed version of a full scientific paper. It describes a study and its results. It is a means of conveying to one’s peers what was done and why, what was found and what the implications are.
Abstracts will only be taken into account for the abstract selection procedure when they are written in English and do not exceed a maximum of 350 words. Furthermore, unfortunately, we cannot accept case-studies, reviews and literature studies (except for meta-analysis). An abstract submitted for the ESC-Contest should contain the following:
Authors and their affiliations
The title should be an accurate promise of the abstract’s contents. It should convey as much as possible about the context and aims of the study.
The list of authors should be restricted to those individuals who actually did the study— conceived it, designed it, gathered the data, crunched the numbers, and wrote the abstract.
This brief section answers the question, “Why did you start?” and should provide a context or explanation for doing the study. Space is at a premium, so a short sentence or two must suffice. This section should also state the aim of the study, and ideally should include a concise statement of the study’s hypothesis.
In an abstract, the description of the methods has to be concise, and many details of what was done must be omitted. However, in the space available the reader can be given a good idea of the design of the study, the context in which it was done, and the types of patients or measurements that were included. For a study involving patients or other human subjects, it should be explicitly stated whether the study was retrospective or prospective and whether there was randomization. The source of the sample (eg, randomly selected, consecutive series, convenience sample) and the context in which the study was done should be specified.
Here the abstract needs to tell the reader what the findings of the study were. Phrases such as “The findings will be presented” are unsatisfactory. Although space is limited, it is important to give the main results not just in subjective terms (“We found device X to be superior to devise Y”) but also in the form of some real data.
The conclusions section (for some meetings this section is labeled “implications”) should be a brief statement of why the study’s findings are important and what the author believes they mean.