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AMA (11/e) Style Guide

A guide to help users create citations using AMA (American Medical Association) style

Quick Tip for Citing Electronic Resources


  • When the DOI is given for a journal article, AMA style prefers that the DOI is cited instead of the URL. If no DOI is given, include the URL. Do not cite both.
  • Keep in mind, publishers may present DOIs without linking through a website, such as: doi:10.1001/jama.2017.13737 or through a website, such as: AMA Manual of Style recommends presenting DOIs as the former (eg, doi:10.1001/jama.2017.13737). The reason being is that a DOI presented in this way links users directly to the permanent article or object the DOI is identifying regardless of any site change.
  • Complete information on how to cite electronic references such as websites or government documents found online can be found in section 3.15 of the AMA Manual of Style.

E-Books, E-Journals and Other Electronic Resource Examples


The year, followed by a semicolon; the volume number and the issue number (in parentheses), followed by a colon; the initial page number, a hyphen, and the final page number, followed by a period, are set without spaces. Do not omit digits from inclusive page numbers. The DOI should be included if provided. The DOI should be the final element and is not followed by a period.  


  1. 1. Quiroz YT, Schultz AP, Chen K, et al. Brain imaging and blood biomarker abnormalities in children with autosomal dominant Alzheimer disease: a cross-sectional study. JAMA Neurol. 2015;72(8):912-919. doi:10.1001/jamaneurol.2015.1099

  2. 2. Sunderam S, Kissin DM, Crawford SB, et al. Assisted reproductive technology surveillance—United States, 2012. MMWR Surveill Summ. 2015;64(suppl 6):1-29.

  3. 3. Fanin M, Angelini C. Progress and challenges in diagnosis of dysferlinopathy. Muscle Nerve. Published online August 8, 2016. doi:10.1002/mus.25367

If no DOI is given, include the URL. Do not cite both.

Use the URL that will take the reader most directly to the article, not a long URL from a search result or search string and not a short, more general URL such as one to the publisher’s home page. You may also use the location displayed in the Web browser as the URL. For a journal article, the accessed date will often be the only date available. This is especially important for journals that provide no date posted, date updated or revised.

For instance:


using a URL from a search result:



URLs with unnecessary characters after a delimiter (ie, hashtag, question mark, virgule):


Additional EXAMPLES: 

  1. Johnsson J. Video games introduce hospital services. Hospitals. 1991;65(7):70+. Accessed August 19, 2019.
  2. Graf WD, Chatrian G, Glass S, Knauss TA. Video game-related seizures: a report on 10 patients and a review of the literature. Pediatrics. 1994;93(4):551-556. Accessed on August 19, 2019.
  3. Wong FS, Campbell DR, Becker BE. Head injury and video games. West J Med. 1983;138(1):107. Accessed August 19, 2019.


A DOI is preferable to a URL if one is available. A DOI should be available for most journal articles. No accessed date is required for the DOI because it is a permanent identifier; it is presented as the last item in the reference.

As indicated in the examples below, these are without https://  before the doi. AMA prefers this because it links users directly to the permanent article or object the DOI is identifying. See EXAMPLES: 

  1. Panagiotidi M. Problematic video game play and ADHD traits in an adult population. Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2017;20(5):292-295. doi:10.1089/cyber.2016.0676
  2. Kietglaiwansiri T, Chonchaiya W. Pattern of video game use in children with attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder and typical development. Pediatr Int. 2018;60(6):523-528. doi:10.1111/ped.13564
  3. Hwang J, Lu AS. Narrative and active video game in separate additive effects of physical activity and cognitive function among young adults. Sci Rep. 2018;8(1):11020. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-29274-0

In the examples below, the articles have no page numbers.

1. Gore D, Haji SA, Balashanmugam A, et al. Light and electron microscopy of macular corneal dystrophy: a case study. Digit J Ophthalmol. 2004;10. Accessed December 6, 2005.

If the online article does not provide page numbers, use other identifiers, eg, by e-page numbers if available (examples 2 and 3).

2. Laupland KB, Davies HD, Low DE, Schwartz B, Green K; Ontario Group A Streptococcal Study Group. Invasive group A streptococcal disease in children and association with varicella-zoster virus infection. Pediatrics. 2000;105(5):e60. Accessed April 30, 2004.

3. e-Health Ethics Initiative. e-Health Code of Ethics. J Med Internet Res. 2000; 2(2):e9. Published May 24, 2000. Accessed April 29, 2004.





In references to journals that have no volume or issue numbers, use the issue date, as shown in example 1 below. If there is an issue number but no volume number, use the style shown in example 2 below.

  1. 1. Flyvholm MA, Susitaival P, Meding B, et al. Nordic occupational skin questionnaire—NOSQ-2002: Nordic questionnaire for surveying work-related skin diseases on hands and forearms and relevant exposure. TemaNord. April 2002:518.

  2. 2. Johnson CL, Dohrmann SM, Kerckove VD, et al. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey: National Youth Fitness Survey estimation procedures, 2012. Vital Health Stat 2. 2014;(168):1-25.

Basic elements for formatting a citation for an e-Book can be found in the AMA Manual section 3.12.11. The basic format is:

Author(s). Chapter title. In: Editor(s). Book Title. [Edition number, if it is the second edition or above; mention of first edition is not necessary] ed. City, State (or country) of publisher: Publisher’s name; copyright year:inclusive pages. URL: [provide URL and verify that the link still works as close as possible to the time of publication]. Accessed [date].

EXAMPLES with Author(s):

With six or less, list all authors. With six or less, cite the first three authors. Follow the same rules as in print. See this guide.

  1. Gawkrodger DJ, Ardern-Jones MR. Dermatology: An Illustrated Colour Text. 6th ed. New York, NY: Elsevier: 2017.!/browse/book/3-s2.0-C20140040415. Accessed April 29, 2019.
  2. Wiles MR, Williams J, Ahmad KA. Essentials of Dermatology for Chiropractors. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers; 2011. Accessed April 29, 2019.
  3. Marks JG, Miller JJ. Lookingbill and Marks' Principles of Dermatology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019.!/browse/book/3-s2.0-C20150008814. Accessed April 29, 2019.

EXAMPLE with Editor(s)

Follow the same rules for listing multiple authors.

  • 1. Lunney JR, Foley KM, Smith TJ, Gelband H, eds. Describing Death in America: What We Need to Know. Washington, DC: National Cancer Policy Board, Institute of Medicine; 2003. Accessed December 6, 2005.


EXAMPLE with Author(s) as a group


1. Style Manual Committee, Council of Science Editors. Scientific Style and Format: The CSE Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers. 8th ed. University of Chicago Press/Council of Science Editors; 2014. Accessed June 18, 2019.


2. World Health Organization. Health Worker Roles in Providing Safe Abortion Care and Post-abortion Contraception. World Health Organization; 2015. Accessed August 15, 2016.



  1. Bingham A, Laptook AR. Hypothermia for neonatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy: different cooling regimens and infants not included in prior trials. In: Perlman JM, Cilio MR, Polin RA, eds. Neurology: neonatology questions and controversies. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019. Neonatology Questions and Controversies Series.!/content/book/3-s2.0-B9780323543927000042. Accessed April 29, 2019.
  2. Lakritz K. Obsessive-compulsive disorder. In: Jones, Jr. HR, Srinivasan J, Allam GJ, Baker RA, eds. Netter's Neurology. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012.!/content/book/3-s2.0-B9781437702736000221. Accessed April 29, 2019.
  3. Vople JJ. Neurological examination: normal and abnormal features. In: Volpe JJ, ed. Volpe's Neurology of the Newborn. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018.!/content/book/3-s2.0-B9780323428767000090. Accessed April 29, 2019.

Note that in example 3 above, the author of the chapter is also an editor of the book. In cases like this, names are given in both places: as authors of the chapter and as editors of the book. The same policy would apply if the authors of a particular chapter and the editors of the book were identical.

In citing data from a website, include the following elements, if available, in the order shown:

Author(s), if given (the names of all authors should be given unless there are more than 6, in which case the names of the first 3 authors are used, followed by “et al”), or name of the group. Title of the specific item cited (if none is given, use the name of the organization responsible for the site.). Name of the website. Published [date]. Updated [date]. Accessed [date]. URL [provide URL and verify that the link still works as close as possible to publication]. 



  • 1. International Society for Infectious Diseases. ProMED-mail website. Accessed April 29, 2004.

  • 2. Sullivan D. Major search engines and directories. SearchEngineWatch website. Updated April 28, 2004. Accessed December 6, 2005.

  • 3. Interim guidance about avian influenza A (H5N1) for US citizens living abroad. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Updated November 18, 2005. Accessed December 6, 2005.

  • 4. Sample size calculation. Grapentine Co Inc. Accessed December 6, 2005.

  • 5. Recommendations for the care and maintenance of high intensity metal halide and mercury vapor lighting in schools. National Electrical Manufacturers Association. Accessed December 6, 2005.

  • 6. Truth and reconciliation: examining human rights violations in South Africa’s health sector: submission to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission concerning the role of health professionals in gross violations of human rights. American Association for the Advancement of Science website. Published 1997. Accessed April 30, 2004.

Often only the accessed date will be available.


  1. 1. Federal Interagency Forum on Aging-Related Statistics. Older Americans 2012: key indicators of well-being. Accessed March 3, 2016.

  2. 2. World Medical Association. Declaration on alcohol. Updated October 2015. Accessed March 3, 2016.

  3. 3. US Department of Health and Human Services. Protection of human subjects. 45 CFR §46. Revised July 19, 2018. Accessed June 23, 2019.

  4. 4. World Health Organization. Infection prevention and control: recovery plans and implementation: Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone inter-country meeting: July 20-22, 2015. Accessed March 3, 2016.

In the 2 examples below, the number of the working paper (example 5) and the publication number (example 6) provide information in addition to the URL and could prove helpful should the URLs change.

  1. 5. Carpenter CS, McClellan CB, Rees DI. Economic conditions, illicit drug use, and substance use disorders in the United States. National Bureau of Economic Research working paper 22051. February 2016. Accessed March 3, 2016.

  2. 6. Johnson DL, O'Malley PM, Bachman JG, Schulenberg JE. HIV/AIDS: Risk & Protective Behaviors Among American Young Adults, 2004-2008. National Institute on Drug Abuse; 2010. Monitoring the Future. NIH publication 10-7586. June 2010. Accessed March 3, 2016.