Reviewed by: Michael R. Blake, Digital Resources Librarian, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Shortness of Breath (SOB) is an Italian-based, English language, electronic-only quarterly journal covering all aspects of pulmonary medicine. Each issue contains the sections Editorial, Reviews or Mini-Reviews, Original Articles, Short Communications, Technical Notes, and “Medical Humanities,” which the site characterizes as "an innovative section in [sic] scientific publishing scene. The traditional conflict between science and the humanities has never been more marked, especially in [sic] biomedical field. This section [sic] are intended to develop skills of observation, interpretation and construction of the meaning of the illness experience, helping care professionals to connect others’ experiences with their own and then develop comparison and introspection capabilities."
This journal’s content can reasonably be compared to that of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and Chest. For example, SOB’s latest issue contains the following mini-reviews (short reviews of highly focused subject areas): “Lung disease in rheumatoid arthritis: Challenges and opportunities,” “Role of overnight caudo-rostral fluid shift in the pathogenesis of sleep apnea,” “Omalizumab therapy in the management of severe allergic asthma,” “Management of cough ineffectiveness in neuromuscular disorders,” and “Sedation during non-invasive ventilation to treat acute respiratory failure.” Articles are scholarly; the language in some content (such as the description of “Medical Humanities,” above, and the initial editorial, entitled, “Times They Are A Changin’, isn’t it?”) reveal that the language of publication – English – may not be the first language of all contributors.
The emphasis here is on rapid submission, manuscript review, and publication. Each article is published and permanently archived with PubMed Central, and every item in the journal is freely available from the website in PDF format (older issues also have HTML format available). This reviewer much prefers HTML, as hyperlinks to figures are available and the text is much easier to read with much more white space than PDF. Material includes numerous references, charts, and illustrations, and an online enhancement is that readers can register at the site for new content alerts.
Recommended for libraries supporting pulmonary researchers and practitioners.