The impact factor of a journal is a measure of the frequency with which the "average article" in that journal has been cited in a particular year. It allows a comparison to be made of the relative importance of two journals, especially when you compare journals within the same field of study.
The higher the impact factor of a journal, potentially the more influence and "impact" that journal is felt to have. For this reason, the impact factor of a journal is one tool that can be used by authors in deciding which journal to submit their manuscripts to.
The latest impact factors for journals in gastroenterology and hepatology, (which can be found listed alongside each publication in the Journals section of GastroHep.com) come from citations gathered by each journal in 2003.(/p>
| Impact factor – a measure of the number of citations for an "average article" in a journal
| ISI Journal Citation Reports |
Overall, most journals have maintained their ranking amongst other journals, despite some climbers and fallers. Gastroenterology and Gut, the top two journals as ranked by impact factor in the field of gastroenterology, have both lost ground slightly (down from 13.4 to 12.7, and 6.3 to 5.9 respectively), but nonetheless remain above the next highest ranked journal, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (up to 4.2 from 3.9).
Similarly the top-ranked Hepatology journal, Hepatology has maintained its position, while still falling slightly from 9.8 to 9.5.
The journal Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics has shown proportionately one of the most impressive gains, rising from 3.0 to 3.5.