Guide for Authors

  • Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery provides readers with current information by publishing the best papers on clinical and basic research, review articles, technical notes, case reports, and editorials about the latest developments in arthroscopic surgery and orthopaedic sports surgery. All articles are subject to peer review. Letters to the Editor and comments on the Journal's content or policies are always welcome.

    All submissions to Arthroscopy must comply with the Instructions for Authors.

    Studies should be in compliance with human studies committees and animal welfare regulations at the authors' institutions and also in compliance with Food and Drug Administration guidelines.

    Author warranties regarding any submitted manuscript:

    • Any manuscript or any data within a manuscript to be submitted to the Arthroscopy Journal for peer review is original work, has been written by the stated authors, and has not been published elsewhere. Likewise, a similar manuscript has not been submitted to or published by any other journal, either by you or any of your coauthors.
    • Any manuscript to be submitted to the Arthroscopy Journal is not currently being considered for publication by any other journal and will not be submitted for such review while under review by this Journal.
    • If there is any possibility, because of its content, that a manuscript to be submitted might be construed as duplicating in whole or in part another actual or pending publication by you or any of your coauthors, it is the corresponding author's responsibility to advise the editors of the Arthroscopy Journal of this possibility and fully disclose the particulars of this potential conflict for the purpose of determining the propriety of this Journal's reviewing the proposed submission.
    All manuscripts are to be submitted electronically through the Arthroscopy online submission and review system Web site ( There, after registering as an author, you will be guided step by step through the uploading of your own files and your approving of the single PDF that will be created from them. Through our Web site, you can track the progress of your manuscript. Communications about a manuscript will be handled through e-mail. Please access the Web site for more specifics about online submission, including a Tutorial for Authors, artwork guidelines, and a link to Author Support by e-mail that is monitored around the clock.

    Recommended Maximums for Articles Submitted to Arthroscopy

    Type of Article Number of Wordsa References Figures (Figure Parts) Tables
    Original Article 4,000 35 7 (15) 4
    Concise Reviewb 1,700 10 1 (2) 1
    Level V Evidenceb 1,600 4 0 0
    Systematic Review 4,500 50 7 (15) 4
    Meta-analysis 4,000 50 7 (15) 4
    Technical Note 1,500c 8 3 (6)c 1
    Case Reportd 1,000 5 2 (4) 0
    Letter to Editor & Reply 500 4 2 (2) 0

    a Maximum number of words is exclusive of the title page, blind title page, references, and figure legends.
    b Please note that Concise Review and Level V Evidence articles are submitted at the invitation of the Editor-in-Chief or Assistant Editor-in-Chief.
    c Technical Notes exceeding these recommendations are sometimes allowed when the subject is broad enough to require more data to convey the message adequately; however, brevity remains a key goal.
    d Only a very limited number of Case Reports are accepted by the Journal.

    Registration of Clinical Trials

    Clinical trial registration (prospective publication of clinical research study authors, title, purpose, hypothesis, methods including statistical methods, and confirmation of Institutional Review Board approval) mitigates against bias resulting from selective reporting of results. Clinical trials beginning patient enrollment after January 1, 2012 will not be accepted for publication in Arthroscopy without prospective registration of the trial (i.e., before enrollment of the first patient). Trials may be registered in any national or international registry. Include details on the "separate title page" only.

    Except in rare circumstances where the temporal effect of the outcome being measured is brief, clinical trials will not be accepted for publication in Arthroscopy without 24 months minimum follow-up for all subjects who are enrolled and reported. The Journal strongly encourages the use of the CONSORT (Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials) Guidelines when designing and reporting randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The criteria outlined by the CONSORT group is meant to assist in improving the overall quality of RCTs, and provides a minimum set of recommendations for reporting on RCTs. There is a 25-item checklist that is designed to facilitate study setup, reporting, and interpretation. The overall goal of utilizing the CONSORT criteria would be to facilitate the study design from the outset, and provide for a high-quality and prudently conceived RCT. The guidelines can be found at

    Preparing the Manuscript for Submission

    Text Style

    • Double space your manuscript.
    • Use continuous line numbering.
    • Type text flush left. Do not justify the right margin of your manuscript.
    • Enter only one space after punctuation.
    • Use two hard returns at the end of each paragraph (i.e., one blank line should appear between paragraphs).
    • Use two hard returns between headings and text.
    The title page (Separate Title Page) of each manuscript should include the title of the article; the authors' full names, degrees, and affiliations; the name, address, telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail address of the person to whom correspondence and reprint requests should be addressed; any necessary footnotes to those items; and a short running title (maximum of 45 characters and spaces). Indicate the specific affiliations of each author. Any acknowledgments should also be included here.

    Disclosure: After the Separate Title Page, you will upload each author's completed Arthroscopy ICMJE form.

    Disclosure of Potential Conflict of Interest

    Arthroscopy uses the ICMJE disclosure for authors. Each author of a manuscript must complete the form and save it using his or her name. The corresponding author will upload all the authors' completed forms at the time of submission. Access the Arthroscopy ICMJE form here.

    The first page of Blinded Manuscript should list only the title because all manuscripts are blinded to reviewers. Likewise, do not include any identifying information in the text, e.g., an author's initials or the names of institutions where the study was done, or a phrase such as "our study" that, when followed by a citation, reveals authorship of the present manuscript in the reference list.

    1. Abstract

    Original Articles, abstracts should be a maximum of 300 words and structured to include the following sections: Purpose: One or 2 sentences that simply state purpose with no background information. Methods: Provide, with sufficient detail, the methods of the study. Results: Provide results, with data, p-values, and standard deviation of mean (or standard deviation). Present most important findings first. Please provide P values and numbers to support your methods findings. Conclusions: State only what your study identified and what it demonstrated. Do not include extraneous information not backed up by the data of your study. Level of Evidence (for human studies) or Clinical relevance (basic science or in vitro study: why is this study important from a clinical standpoint?)

    Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses, the abstract and text should be structured as an Original Article.

    Technical Notes or Case Reports, the abstract should be an unstructured summary (maximum length, 200 words). The body of these manuscripts should consist of: Introduction, Technique or Case Report, and Discussion, plus References and figure legends and video legend (if applicable).

    Level V Evidence articles, the abstract should be an unstructured summary (maximum length, 300 words)

    Concise Reviews, the abstract should be an unstructured summary (maximum length, 200 words).

    The body of an Original Article should consist of:

    2. Introduction

    Succinctly state the problem that led to your undertaking the study, including a concise review of only the most relevant literature. Conclude the introduction by stating the purpose of the study and then stating your hypothesis.

    3. Methods

    Describe the study design (prospective or retrospective, inclusion and exclusion criteria, duration) and the study population (demographics, length of follow-up) if retrospective.

    The statistics that you have used to analyze the data should be described in detail. You cannot make the statement, "We found no significant difference between the two groups" unless a power study was done and you include in the text the value of alpha, beta, and standard deviation. Use of the word significant requires your reporting a P value. Confidence intervals of 95% are required whenever the results of survivorship analysis are given in the text, tables, or figures. Use of the word correlation requires you to report the correlation coefficient.

    Arthroscopy encourages the use of validated outcome instruments. The use of both a generic (general) health outcome measure and a joint-specific, limb-specific, or condition- specific measure is encouraged. If an outcome instrument leads to a categorical ranking (e.g., excellent or good or poor), the aggregate outcome score for each patient should be provided.

    4. Results

    Describe in detail the data obtained during the study following the order of the Methods. Using prospective methods, study population demographics must be reported in the results section of the manuscript. As a reminder, the overall final patient follow-up should be 80% or greater (less than 20% drop-out) in order to minimize follow-up bias. In general, scientific studies will not be accepted for publication without meeting this criterion. Results obtained after less than two years of follow-up are rarely accepted for publication by the Journal. All data in the text must be consistent with the rest of the manuscript, including data in tables, figures, and legends. Present comparison data in tables and present as mean ± standard error of the mean with confidence intervals.

    5. Discussion

    Be concise. What does your study show? Is your hypothesis affirmed or refuted? Compare and contrast your study with others in the most relevant world literature, particularly the recent literature. A complete literature review is unnecessary.

    6. Limitations

    Analyze your data and discuss the limitations of your study.

    7. Conclusions

    Here you must briefly state your new (or verified) view of the problem you outlined in the Introduction. Take special care to draw your conclusions only from your results. Check that your conclusions are firmly supported by your data. And, most importantly, do not make concluding statements that lie beyond the scope of your study, or unnecessary statements such as "further studies are warranted." The conclusions in the text must match those in the abstract.

    8. References

    The Journal follows the reference style in "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (see the New England Journal of Medicine 1997;336:309-315 or References must be cited in the text by number and be numbered in order of citation. Do not include unpublished material or personal communications in your reference list. If essential to your message, you may include unpublished material in the body of the text and end the statement with the appropriate information in parentheses. For example: (J. Karlsson, M.D., personal communication, [month and year of communication]).

    Your reference list should be typed double-spaced and appear after the text and before figure legends and tables. Provide all authors' names when six or fewer; when seven or more, list the first three and add et al. For abbreviations of journal names, refer to the National Library of Medicine's List of Journals Indexed in Index Medicus ( Also, provide article titles and inclusive page numbers (321-328, not 321-8). The accuracy of reference data is the responsibility of all authors.

    Use these examples when formatting your references:

    1. Byrd JWT, Jones KS. Arthroscopic management of femoroacetabular impingement: Minimum 2-year follow-up. Arthroscopy 2011;27:1379-1388.

    Chapter in a book
    2. Ruch DS, Poehling GG. Operative arthroscopy of the wrist. In: Andrews JR, Timmerman LA, eds. Diagnostic and operative arthroscopy. Philadelphia: WB Saunders, 1997;199-205.

    3. Burkhart SS, Lo IK, Brady PC. Burkhart's view of the shoulder: The cowboy's guide to advanced shoulder arthroscopy. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Williams, 2006.

    Article in Press
    Shin S-J. A comparison of 2 repair techniques for partial-thickness articular-sided rotator cuff tears. Arthroscopy in press, available on 17 October 2011 doi: 10.1016/j.arthro.2011.07.005 (available at

    Please do not use End Notes or automatic list numbering for references because these features are lost during production by the publisher; instead, type reference numbers in parentheses in the text and type the reference list that appears at the end of the text.

    The reference list, figure legends, and tables must appear at the end of the manuscript.

    9. Figure and Video Legends

    Provide a separate, fully detailed legend for each figure and each part of a multipart figure. Figure legends must "stand alone" (i.e., contain a complete, take-home, educational message, as if a reader viewed only that Figure without looking at any others or without reading the text). Labels are always helpful. Please be sure to mention patient position, side, and viewing portal or MRI orientation as appropriate. All abbreviations and symbols used on figures must be defined here. Legends for videos should contain enough detail to guide viewers in seeing the most important points to be learned.

    10. Tables

    Tables, each on a separate page, should be neatly typed with a short descriptive title above the tabular data and any notes below. Define all abbreviations. Do not give the same information in tables that you give in the text or in figures.

    11. Figures

    Upload your figures, each as a separate file, along with the rest of your manuscript (or compress all figures into one Zip file and upload that in one step; the system will then "unpack" the files and prompt you to name each figure. Visit for a trial version of the compression software). Do not include figures in the text document and do not upload your text as a PDF.

    Art published as commercial advertising or other commercial material may not be submitted as a figure. In addition, commercial financial or technical support in preparation of original figures or videos must be disclosed in figure and video legends and video opening title. Remove from figures any identifying features such as authors' names or institutions. Graphs and drawings are to be of professional quality. Radiographs or clinical photographs: Remove all markings (such as patients' initials, dates, names of institutions) from imaging. Any labels (e.g., arrows or lettering) must be of professional quality. These identifying labels must be large enough to be legible if the figure must be reduced in size. Sequences of radiographs should be of identical magnification. The subject should be centered in clinical photographs. Crop extraneous material and background before capturing the image electronically.

    Upload each figure as a separate file. Images should be in EPS or TIF format. Graphics software such as Photoshop or Illustrator can be used to create your illustrations. Do not use presentation software such as PowerPoint, CorelDraw, or Harvard Graphics. Color images must be RGB, of at least 300 DPI resolution. Gray scale images must have at least 300 DPI resolution. Combinations of gray scale and line art must be at least 500 DPI resolution. Line art (black-and-white or color) must be at least 1,000 DPI resolution.

    Permissions: Photographs in which a person's face is recognizable must be accompanied by a letter of release from that person explicitly granting permission for publication in the Journal. For any previously published material, written permission for both print and electronic reprint rights must be obtained from the copyright holder. Contact the publisher of the original work. Authors are also responsible for paying any fees required by copyright holders to reprint material. Please forward e-mailed permissions to the editorial office ( or Fax to 336-716-8448.

    Note that the online submission system will provide feedback to you on the quality of your figures; please take a minute to look at those results. Although the artwork quality-check tool will not prevent your submitting substandard artwork, this may become a point of discussion with you should we be interested in your paper.

    Submitting a Cover Image with Video

    Authors are invited to submit interesting images to be published on the cover of the Journal along with an accompanying video. Please include a caption of approximately 100 words that fully describes the story behind the picture and leads readers to see what you want them to see. Submission of a video to accompany the image is now required. Please see instructions for videos below.

    Details of Style

    Drug names: Use only generic names in referring to drugs. After first mention, add in parentheses any commonly used variant generic.

    Abbreviations: Follow the American Medical Association Manual of Style (available from online booksellers).

    Article Proofs

    To expedite publication, a password-protected link to the electronic page proof (PDF files) is sent to the corresponding author by e-mail. Any corrections must be sent to the Journal Manager at the publisher within 48 hours of receipt; late return may delay publication of an article. Please check text, references, tables, figures, and legends carefully.


    Copyright to all published articles will be held by the Arthroscopy Association of North America. In view of the present United States copyright law, each coauthor of a submitted manuscript must sign a form expressly transferring copyright in the event that a paper is accepted for publication in the Journal. Copyright forms for manuscripts submitted online are handled by the production department of the publisher once the manuscript is accepted and scheduled for publication.

    Submitting a Revision Online

    Deadline for Revising Your Manuscript
    Speedy publication requires prompt revision. Revised manuscripts are to be returned within 30 days from the date of the e-mail requesting revision will be guaranteed priority for publication. Revised manuscripts not returned in 60 days' time may be withdrawn from consideration.

    When preparing a revision, use the "Track Changes" option in Microsoft Word. Also, use the line numbering function of Word, and be sure to choose "continuous" numbering.

    Author Inquiries About Online Manuscript Submissions

    The corresponding author may access the Journal's online submission Web site (, log in, and view the progress of a manuscript as it moves from one stage to the next.

    Levels of Evidence for Primary Research

    Instructions for Submitting Videos

    Arthroscopy encourages authors to submit a video to be published on the Journal's web site at as an illustration incorporated in an article that the author is submitting for publication or as video paired with a journal cover illustration. All videos are subject to peer review. We expect professional quality and narration, regardless of method of production. A sound track is highly desirable and is requested.

    These formats for video will be accepted

    • MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 (.mpg)
    • MP4 (.mp4)
    • QuickTime (.mov)

    Arthroscopy will not edit any video, but a reviewer may suggest that the author make changes.


    • Each video must begin with a slide listing the authors' conflicts of interest.
    • Submit a single video per manuscript, not multi-part videos.
    • Maximum length of videos is 4.5 minutes.
    • Video file may not exceed 100 MB.
    • Please ZIP the file and upload the zipped file to hasten the upload time.
    • A complete legend for the video must be included in the manuscript.
    • Video must be cited in the text of your manuscript just like a figure.
    • Sound narration is highly desirable and is requested.

    Updated October 2012


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