Instructions for Authors : JBJS

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​​Instructions for Authors

Revised September 27, 2023

All manuscripts must be submitted online via Editorial Manager at:


The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery (JBJS) welcomes original articles that contribute to orthopaedic knowledge from all sources in all countries, with the goal of improving the quality of care of orthopaedic patients.

Articles submitted to JBJS undergo double-blinded peer review, with the Editorial Office removing all author and institution identifiers before sending papers to reviewers.

Conditions for Submission
Submission Overview
Submission Fee
Manuscript Structure
The Reporting of Race and Ethnicity Data
What to Expect After Submission
Public Access Policy
Open-Access Option
Embargo Policy for Accepted Manuscripts
Appeals Process
Supplementary Links

Conditions for Submission

  • Articles are accepted for exclusive publication in JBJS. Previous presentation at a scientific meeting, and/or publication of the abstract in conjunction with the meeting, does not preclude publication of the article; however, this information must be disclosed in a cover letter at the time of submission. JBJS does not permit manuscripts under review in its journals to be simultaneously under review for another publication.​ Previously published articles, including those published in non-English-language journals, are not accepted. JBJS does not accept manuscript submissions involving human subjects (or their medical records) that have been previously posted to preprint servers.
  • Physical and electronic copies of published articles and illustrations become the property of The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc.
  • All clinical trials (i.e., any clinical study in which patients are randomized into two treatment groups OR are followed prospectively to compare two different treatments) must have been registered in a public trials registry such as in accordance with the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) guidelines for trial registration. Additionally, all reports of randomized controlled trials that began patient enrollment after December 7, 2016, must have been prospectively registered in a trial registry in order to be considered for publication (see editorial for additional information).
  • All manuscripts dealing with the study of human subjects must include a statement that the subjects gave informed consent to participate and that the study was approved by an institutional review board or a similar committee. All studies should be carried out in accordance with the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki (JBJS 79A:1089-98,1997). Patient confidentiality must be protected according to the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). See our complete Ethics Policy for additional information.
  • Authors have an obligation to cooperate in relation to allegations of misconduct.
  • All manuscripts reporting on experiments on animals must include a statement that the study has been approved by an animal utilization study committee. Information about the management of postoperative pain should be included.
  • If requested by the Editor-in-Chief, authors must make the tabulated raw data that forms the basis of their work available for examination in a timely fashion.

Submission Overview

Authors should, in general, follow the ICMJE's "Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals."

All manuscripts must be submitted through Editorial Manager (a web-based service). Corresponding authors must register via and will then receive an e-mail containing a Username and Password that will allow access for manuscript submission.

All authors must register with ORCID and include their ORCID identifier in their Editorial Manager profile. Authors can obtain this identifier through Editorial Manager when they submit their article; it will not be possible to submit an article without such identifier for each author.

Use the Article Type Definitions table to classify your article on submission.

JBJS does not consider manuscript proposals or abstracts submitted online or via e-mail. If you are interested in publishing a supplement, please contact [email protected].

The following items must be submitted:

  1. Title Page including (1) article title, (2) authors' names, in order in which they should appear, and academic degrees, (3) institution(s) at which the work was performed, (4) institution (and city and state or country) with which each author is affiliated, (5) corresponding author and his/her e-mail address.
  2. Manuscript Text: See "Manuscript Structure" below.
  3. Copyright Transfer and Author Agreement: All authors must sign a Copyright Transfer and Author Agreement granting JBJS exclusive copyright to all material, except for previously copyrighted items (see #6 below) and video. Authors can maintain the copyright to videos but must complete the Video License Agreement granting JBJS unlimited license to use the video online.
  4. Disclosure of Potential Conflicts of Interest: Authors must complete an ICMJE Conflict of Interest Statement form for each submitted manuscript. Each author must submit a separate ICMJE form. JBJS will post the forms online and summarize them in a statement in the article. The ICMJE forms have no bearing on the decision to accept a manuscript.
  5. IRB Approval: A copy of the letter granting approval from the institutional review board or the animal utilization study committee is required. A translated version must be provided if the original approval is not written in English.
  6. Permission to Use Figures, Tables, and Videos Owned by Another Party: Authors are responsible for obtaining permissions. Provide (1) a full citation for the previous publication and (2) a letter from the owner of the copyright granting permission for JBJS to reproduce the copyrighted material OR a completed permissions form stating the date when permission was requested and the approximate date when the permission is expected to be received.

Submission Fee

A non-refundable submission fee of $299 is due at the time of submission for all unsolicited Clinical Research and Basic-Science Research manuscripts as well as Evidence-Based Systematic Reviews. Waivers are available in some circumstances.

Manuscript Structure

All manuscripts must conform to the following formatting instructions:

  • File format: Microsoft Word
  • Word count: Maximum, 3,000 words (including the Abstract but excluding references and figure legends)
  • Line spacing: Double-spaced
  • Font: Times New Roman (size 12)
  • Page layout: Manuscript title included at the beginning of the first page with continuous line numbering down left side of page

Quick References:

Author New Submission Checklist
Author Revision Checklist

Clinical Research and Basic-Science Research articles should consist of:

  1. A Structured Abstract consisting of 5 paragraphs, totaling no more than 325 words, with the headings: Background (stating the primary research question), Methods, Results, Conclusions, and Level of Evidence (for Clinical Research articles) or Clinical Relevance (for Basic-Science Research articles). The Level of Evidence should be assigned according to the definitions in the Level of Evidence  table. This rating will be reviewed by a JBJS Deputy Editor, who will make the final determination.
  2. The body should consist of:
    • Introduction: State the problem that led to the study, including a concise review of only the relevant literature. State your hypothesis and the purpose of the study. It is preferable that this be done in the form of a research question that describes the setting of the study, the population or sample studied, and the primary outcome measure.
    • Materials and Methods: Describe the study design in detail using standard methodological terms. Refer to our detailed guidelines for writing a Materials and Methods  section for additional guidelines.
    • Results: Provide a detailed report on the data obtained during the study. All measurements should be presented in metric values. Results of many reconstructive procedures, such as total joint arthroplasty, should be based on at least a 2-year follow-up of each patient. An average of two years of follow-up is generally not sufficient. If the follow-up is shorter, provide a strong scientific justification for why the focus on shorter follow-up is clinically relevant.
    • Discussion: Be succinct. What does your study show? Is your hypothesis affirmed or refuted? Discuss the importance of this article with regard to the relevant world literature; however, a complete literature review is unnecessary. Analyze your data and discuss their strengths, their weaknesses, and the limitations of the study.
  3. A reference section, in PubMed/Index Medicus format, must be included after the manuscript text. Number the references according to the order of citation in the text (not alphabetically), and cite all references in the text. Papers posted on preprint servers may not be used as references. Refer to our Reference Formatting Guidelines for additional guidance. Notice that journal citations must include all authors (not "et al.") and complete page numbers (not just the first page), per journal style.
  4. Figure legends must be included at the end of the manuscript text file, after the References section, for all images. Explain what each figure shows. Identify machine settings for magnetic resonance images, and give the magnification of all photomicrographs. Define all arrows and other such indicators appearing on the figure.
  5. Tables should be submitted in Word or Excel​ format with a descriptive title above the table itself (do not include this information on the figure legends page). All tables should be cited in the manuscript text by table number and uploaded as individual files. Table file names should contain the table number (e.g. Table 1.docx).
  6. Figures must be submitted in TIFF or EPS format. No more than 10 separate image files may be submitted. Cite all figures, in order, in the text. See Guidelines for Figures for detailed instructions.
  7. Videos must be uploaded to the Video Submissions Site according to our Author Video Guidelines. Instructions for upload can be found here.

See our Concise Format Guidelines for reporting the longer-term follow-up status of patients described in a previous study.

The Reporting of Race and Ethnicity Data

In accordance with the American Medical Association (AMA) Manual of Style Committee's Updated Guidance on the Reporting of Race and Ethnicity in Medical and Science Journals published in August 2021, all authors must adhere to the below requirements for any clinical research article submitted to JBJS. For more detailed information and best practices on the reporting of race and ethnicity data, please refer to the Editorial published in JBJS in February 2023. Note that JBJS does not require authors to conduct post hoc analyses of outcomes by participant race or ethnicity.

  • Aggregate, deidentified demographic information (e.g., age, sex, race and ethnicity, and socioeconomic indicators) should be reported for research reports along with all prespecified outcomes.
  • Summary demographic information should be reported in the first line of the Results section of the Abstract, and complete demographic information should be reported in the Results section of the manuscript.
  • In the Materials and Methods section, state who identified participant race and ethnicity as well as the source of the classifications used (e.g., self-report, database, electronic health record).
  • The reporting of race and ethnicity should not be considered in isolation and should be accompanied by reporting of other sociodemographic factors and social determinants, including concerns about racism, disparities, and inequities, and the intersectionality of race and ethnicity with these other factors.

Occasionally, authors may find that it is not possible to describe the race or ethnicity of the individuals comprising their study population (for example, if using a data set that does not include this information). In those cases, authors should state the reason for the omission in the Materials and Methods section and also explicitly state in the Discussion section that the absence of these descriptive data is a limitation that may affect the study's generalizability.​


  • Effective January 1, 2018, each author must indicate his/her contributor roles on the "Add/Edit/Remove Authors" screen in Editorial Manager in accordance with the CRediT Taxonomy initiative.
  • Each author must have contributed significantly to, and be willing to take public responsibility for, one or more aspects of the study: its design, data acquisition, and analysis and interpretation of data. All authors must have been actively involved in the drafting and critical revision of the manuscript, and each must provide final approval of the version to be published. If a research group is designated as the author of an article, see our Group Authorship instructions for guidance.
  • Individuals who have contributed to only one section of the manuscript or have contributed only cases should be credited in an acknowledgment footnote. See the ICMJE author definitions page for additional guidance regarding authors and non-author contributors.
  • A non-author writer who is employed by a commercial organization must be mentioned, along with the name of his or her employer, in an acknowledgment footnote. The non-author writer must also submit a Conflict of Interest Statement.
  • The order of names reflects only the preference of the authors and the corresponding author is not designated in the final published version of an article. Any change in authorship after the initial review process necessitates a signed letter, generally from all authors, agreeing to the change.
  • JBJS prefers not to publish equal contribution statements or denote first and/or senior authors. Although we do occasionally allow it regarding first and second authors, we do not to expand this practice to more than 2 authors.

What to Expect After Submission

  • Manuscripts are generally evaluated by the JBJS editorial staff and assigned to the Editor-in-Chief (EIC), who then assigns the paper to a Deputy Editor. In most cases, the Deputy Editor then sends the paper to consultant reviewers.
  • If a reviewer or handling editor has a conflict of interest regarding the subject matter of a manuscript, he/she discloses this to the EIC, who makes the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of the manuscript. The EIC has no known conflicts or competing interests.
  • If reviewers disagree regarding acceptance of a manuscript, the decision may be arbitrated at a workshop, which JBJS holds several times a year.
  • The time between receipt of a submitted manuscript and the initial decision regarding its publication averages between 4 and 6 weeks.
  • The corresponding author is informed of the publication date of an accepted manuscript approximately 6 weeks before publication.

Public Access Policy

To enable authors to comply with the requirements of outside funding bodies, JBJS, Inc. will deposit, into the PubMed Central (PMC) Archive, the final published version of any article funded by a body requiring such deposit. Thus, authors should identify on the Copyright Transfer Agreement (CTA) whether their article is based on research funded in whole or in part by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), Wellcome Trust, Research Councils UK (RCUK), or another funding agency requiring deposit to a repository. JBJS, Inc., as a service to its authors, will then identify these articles to the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and transmit them to PMC. PMC will make these articles freely available after an embargo period that satisfies the funding agency's requirements (or immediately upon publication if the author chose the open-access option). JBJS, Inc. will not be held responsible for retroactive deposits to PMC if the author has not identified the funding agency on the CTA form.

Open-Access Option

JBJS, Inc. offers an open-access option to authors who want readers around the globe to have free, perpetual, unrestricted online access to their article on the JBJS web site immediately upon publication.

Open access

Authors of accepted peer-reviewed articles have the choice to pay a fee to allow perpetual unrestricted online access to their published article to readers globally, immediately upon publication. Authors may take advantage of the open access option at the point of submission. Please note that this choice has no influence on the peer review and acceptance process. These articles are subject to the journal's standard peer-review process and will be accepted or rejected based on their own merit.

The article processing charge (APC) is charged on acceptance of the article and should be paid within 30 days by the author, funding agency or institution. Payment must be processed for the article to be published open access. For a list of journals and pricing please visit our Wolters Kluwer Hybrid Open Access Journals page.

Authors retain copyright
Authors retain their copyright for all articles they opt to publish open access. Authors grant Wolters Kluwer an exclusive license to publish the article and the article is made available under the terms of a Creative Commons user license. Please visit our Open Access Publication Process page for more information.

Creative Commons license
Open access articles are freely available to read, download and share from the time of publication under the terms of the Creative Commons License Attribution-Non Commercial No Derivative (CC BY-NC-ND) license. This license does not permit reuse for any commercial purposes, nor does it cover the reuse or modification of individual elements of the work (such as figures, tables, etc.) in the creation of derivative works without specific permission.

Compliance with funder mandated open access policies
An author whose work is funded by an organization that mandates the use of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license is able to meet that requirement through the available open access license for approved funders. Information about the approved funders can be found here.

Read and Publish Agreements

Wolters Kluwer currently has read-and-publish agreements with institutional consortia listed here.

Corresponding authors who are affiliated with the participating institution and who qualify as eligible authors* can publish their eligible articles open access in the eligible LWW journals at no direct cost to them. Please see your institution's individual policy for guidance on eligible article types and license choice. To qualify for the APC waiver, the corresponding author must provide their participating institution's name and institutional email address in the journal's submission system. On acceptance, the corresponding author will be asked to place an open access order in the publisher's payment portal where they will be able to request the APC be funded in accordance with this agreement. A $0.00 APC will then be applied.

 *Eligible authors: Corresponding authors who are teaching and research staff employed by or otherwise accredited to one of the participating institutions as well as students enrolled or accredited to one of the institutions and who want to publish open access articles.

Compliance with National Institutes of Health Accessibility Requirements  
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) requires authors to submit the “post-print" (the final manuscript, in Word format, after peer-review and acceptance for publication but prior to the publisher's copyediting, design, formatting, and other services) of research the NIH funds to a repository that is accessible online by all without charge. As a service to our authors, LWW will identify to the National Library of Medicine (NLM) articles that require deposit and will transmit the post-print of an article based on research funded in whole or in part by the NIH to PubMed Central.

FAQ for open access

The article processing charge for the open-access option is $3,678 (CC BY-NC-ND license) or $4,429 (CC BY license, which is offered only to authors who have received funding that mandates the CC BY license). The publication fee is charged on acceptance of the article and must be paid in full within 30 days by credit card by the author, funding agency, or institution.

For more information, please see our FAQs.

Embargo Policy for Accepted Manuscripts

Specific information contained in your article cannot be discussed with the media, published, posted online, or otherwise placed in the public domain until after publication. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to ensure that all coauthors are aware of this policy. See our Confidentiality and Embargo Policy for additional information regarding this policy, including exceptions.

Appeals Process

JBJS conducts workshops several times per year where contested decisions may be arbitrated.

An author who wishes to appeal a decision should contact [email protected] with a detailed letter that explains the reason for the appeal. This letter will be considered by the handling editor, and the author will be notified of the final decision. Decisions on appeals are final, without exception. Priority is given to new submissions, so the appeal process may take longer than the original submission process.

JBJS Policy on the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Writing Manuscripts

Concerning AI applications that create text, tables, figures, images, computer code, and/or video (such as ChatGPT), these applications cannot be listed as authors, and whether and how they were used in the research or reporting of its findings must be described in detail in the Methods section, and should be mentioned again in the Acknowledgments section.

See our April 2023 Editorial for more information.

Supplementary Links

Ethics Policy
Article Type Definitions
Materials and Methods
Level of Evidence
Guidelines for Figures
Concise Format Guidelines
Author New Submission Checklist
Author Revision Checklist
Author Video Guidelines
Reference Formatting Guidelines
Group Authorship Guidelines
Confidentiality and Embargo Policy
Hybrid Open Access FAQ


Copyright Transfer Form
Conflict of Interest Form 
Video License Agreement
Figure Permissions Form
Open Access License Agreement (open-access option only)​