Writing toxicology reports is difficult in any language, as it involves condensing weeks to months of work into a few thousand well-chosen words.

The need to write reports in English is both an obstacle and a challenge for the scientist whose native language is not English. Yet after checking about five thousand manuscripts for syntax and overall coherence I have come to the conclusion that grammar and vocabulary are secondary problems in scientific writing. Basic English grammar is simple, and scientific prose is one of the simplest forms in any language; the general vocabulary is that of a 10-year-old child, and there is no need for idioms, metaphors, etc.