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Guidelines for Submission

Any original article relevant to orthopaedic surgery, orthopaedic science or the teaching of either will be considered for publication in The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal.  Additionally, we encourage submissions of editorials and/or essays pertaining to orthopaedics and the history of orthopaedics.  Submissions are encouraged from alumni, visitors to the department, residents, and friends of Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Department of Orthopaedics.  The first edition of the journal will be published in June 2015, and annually thereafter.

General Guidelines

  1. Articles are accepted only for exclusive publication in The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal. Previously published articles are not accepted. Published articles and illustrations become the property of The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal.  Publication does not constitute official endorsement of opinions presented in articles.
  2. If the Editor(s) of The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal request additional data forming the basis for the work, the authors will make the data available for examination in a timely fashion.
  3. In the preparation of a manuscript, authors should, in general, follow the recommendations in "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals: Writing and Editing for Biomedical Publication" by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (www.icmje.org).
  4. All clinical trials submitted for consideration (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 www.clinicaltrials.gov.
  5. All manuscripts dealing with the study of human subjects must include a statement that the subjects gave informed consent to participate in the study and that the study has been 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, as presented in The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (1997;79-A:1089-98). Patient confidentiality must be protected according to the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
  6. All manuscripts dealing with experimental results in animals must include a statement that the study has been approved by an animal utilization study committee.
  7. Manuscripts are evaluated by the editorial staff of The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal and are sent to consultant reviewers. On occasion, reviewers may have a conflict of interest or a competing interest with regard to the subject matter of a manuscript. Such conflicts are disclosed to the Editor(s) - who have no known conflicts of interest or competing interests, and who make the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of all manuscripts.

Preparation of manuscripts:

Manuscripts must be typewritten and double spaced using wide margins and submitted as a Microsoft Word file.  They should not exceed 4000 words excluding references and figure legends. Write out numbers under 10 except percentages, degrees or numbers expressed as decimals.  Direct quotations should include the exact page number on which they appeared in the book or article.  All measurements should be given in SI metric units. Use only standard abbreviations. Avoid abbreviations in the title of the manuscript. The spelled-out abbreviation followed by the abbreviation in parenthesis should be used on first mention unless the abbreviation is a standard unit of measurement.

Items Required for Submission

  1. Title Page: List the title of the manuscript and the authors' names in the order in which they should appear. Provide each author’s highest academic degree, name of the department(s) and institution(s) where the work should be attributed and a complete mailing address for each author. Clearly designate the corresponding author and his/her telephone number and e-mail address.
  2. Abstract: no more than 350 words, consisting of five paragraphs, with the headings Introduction (which states the primary research question), Methods, Results, Discussion and Level of Evidence (for clinical articles) or Clinical Relevance (for basic-science articles).
  3. Manuscript: in “IMRAD format”
    1. 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.
    2. Materials and Methods: Describe the study design in detail using standard methodologic terms, such as retrospective or prospective cohort study, prospective randomized trial, case-control study, cross-sectional study, etc.
      1. Reports of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) should follow the twenty-five-item checklist developed by the CONSORT Group (www.consort-statement.org), and include, with the submission of the article, a copy of that checklist and a flow diagram. Please note that this flow diagram must appear as a manuscript figure (typically in the Figure 1 position).
      2. Submissions reporting cohort, case-control and cross-sectional studies should conform to the format suggested by the STROBE panel (http://www.strobe-statement.org).
      3. Reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses should conform to the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) Statement criteria. These are available at http://www.prisma-statement.org. Meta-analyses must include a description of how data were pooled and the details of any sensitivity analyses that were performed.
      4. Reporting of all study designs should include information about the sample including how it was assembled and how inclusions and exclusions were identified. State how the sample size was determined. Justification for complex statistical strategies, including those involving any kind of modeling approach, should be described in detail. It is especially important to identify any assumptions about the data that are implicit to the statistical strategy. P values are required to support any statement indicating a significant difference. We encourage the use of validated outcome instruments wherever possible. Novel measurement scales should be used only if existing scales are deemed insufficient in some way to the needs of the study.
    3. Source of Funding: Sources of funding must be disclosed – these include grants, equipment, drugs, and/or other support that facilitated conduct of the work described in the article or the writing of the article itself.  If no outside support was obtained this should be clearly stated.
    4. Results: Provide a detailed report on the data obtained during the study. Give numeric results not only as derivatives (for example, percentages) but also as the absolute numbers from which the derivatives were calculated, and specify the statistical significance attached to them, if any. Avoid nontechnical uses of technical terms in statistics, such as “random” (which implies a randomizing device), “normal,” “significant,” “correlations,” and “sample.”
    5. Discussion: Be succinct. What does your study show? Is your hypothesis affirmed or refuted? Discuss the importance of this article with regard to the current relevant literature; a complete literature review is unnecessary. Analyze your data and discuss their strengths, their weaknesses, and the limitations of the study.
  4. Tables: must be labeled individually and submitted as separate electronic files. Tables should be submitted in their original file format (Word or Excel) and not as graphics files. Number tables consecutively in the order of their first citation in the text and supply a title for each. Titles in tables should be short but self-explanatory, containing information that allows readers to understand the table’s content without having to go back to the text. Be sure that each table is cited in the text. Give each column a short or an abbreviated heading. Authors should place explanatory matter in footnotes, not in the heading. Explain all nonstandard abbreviations in footnotes. Identify statistical measures of variation in standard deviation.
  5. Figures: must be submitted electronically as either .tiff or .jpg file.  (Special illustrations and photographs may be exempted from this electronic requirement and should be mailed to the address below.) Figures should be numbered consecutively according to the order in which they have been cited in the text. All images must have resolution of 300 pixels per inch (ppi).  Web page images are to be avoided.  Set digital cameras to their highest quality (ppi) setting for photographs. When submitting an illustration that has appeared elsewhere, give full information about previous publication and credit to be given, and state whether or not permission to reproduce it has been obtained. Color illustrations may not be used unless it is the opinion of the journal that they convey information not available in black and white.
  6. Legends for Tables & Figures: should be listed separately in order of appearance and single-spaced.
  7. Bibliography: must list references in order of their use, and be double-spaced.  References must be presented in the text by superscript numbers using JBJS style and should follow the standards summarized in the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals:
  8. Cover Letter (optional)
  9. Acknowledgment (optional) If included, it must be attached as a separate file, not included in the text of the manuscript.

Follow-on Items required:

These will be provided if manuscript is accepted for publication.

  1. Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal – Assignment of Copyright and Author Agreement: must be signed by all authors. The form must reference the manuscript title. Completed (signed) forms should be scanned and submitted via email in PDF format.
  2. ICMJE Conflict of Interest Disclosure: This form must be completed electronically with use of Adobe Acrobat or Reader and submitted via email in PDF format. The form must reference the manuscript title and corresponding author. This statement has no bearing on the editorial decision to publish a manuscript. No article will be published until the completed conflict of interest form has been incorporated into the record kept on that manuscript in The Dartmouth Orthopaedic Journal office. A summary of the statements selected by the author or authors will be printed with the published article.
  3. IRB Approval (if applicable): A copy of the letter granting approval from the institutional review board or the animal utilization study committee is required.

Send electronic copies of all items to Ross.A.Mcentarfer@hitchcock.org. For questions pertaining to these instructions please contact us at:

Ross McEntarfer, MD
Ross.a.McEntarfer@hitchcock.org
Dartmouth-Hitchcock
Lebanon, NH 03756
(603) 650-7590

Patrick Dickerson, MD
Patrick.c.Dickerson@hitchcock.org   
Dartmouth-Hitchcock
Lebanon, NH 03756
(603) 650-7590

John-Erik Bell, MD
john-erik.bell@hitchcock.org
Dartmouth-Hitchcock
Lebanon, NH 03756
(603) 650-8494

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