Author Information

Types of articles

The Canadian Journal of Surgery (CJS) publishes the following types of articles:

  • Editorials are written by members of the editorial board.
  • Research articles report the results of original research. The journal does not distinguish between full-length articles and brief reports.
  • Reviews present a comprehensive and critical appraisal of a particular topic.
  • Commentaries are similar to reviews but are designed to make a point about published research on a topic without reviewing the topic comprehensively. This section may include consensus statements re­gard­ing clinical practice.
  • Discussions in surgery comment on innovations in surgical education and surgical practice. They include continuing medical education articles, such as evidence-based reviews in surgery and tips for conducting surgical research.
  • Letters to the editor comment on recent articles in the journal.

Note: Survey-based submissions are rarely accepted and will be considered only if they present breakthrough or otherwise compelling surgical events with high response rates.  CJS does not accept case reports.

Length of articles

Research articles can have up to 4000 words (excluding title page, abstract, references, tables, figures and figure captions) and should include no more than 60 references.

Reviews can have up to 10 000 words (exclud­ing title page, abstract, references, tables, figures and figure captions).

Commentaries are limited to 1000 words and 5 references. They should contain an article summary with a maximum of 150 words. They may include a figure or a key points box. They generally do not include tables.

Discussions in surgery are limited to 1000 words and 5 references, with the exception of continuing medical education articles, which are limited to 2000 words and 10 references. They should include an article summary with a maximum of 150 words, and may include figures and tables as necessary.

Letters to the editor are limited to 500 words and may contain a table or figure. They may be abridged.

Manuscript preparation

Authors should consult the ICMJE recommendations (formerly the Uniform Recommendations for Manuscripts).

Title page

This page should contain authors’ full names, academic degrees and affiliations; any meeting(s) at which the work was presented, in whole or in part; and the corresponding author’s contact information (mailing address and email address).


All research and review articles must contain a 150- to 250-word abstract. Structured abstracts are required for research, systematic reviews and meta-analyses and should contain the same headings appearing in the body of the paper: Background, Methods, Results, Discussion and Conclusion. Narrative reviews should have an unstructured abstract stating the key points of the article. Please note: the abstract should be uploaded both as part of the main document and in the abstract section in Manuscript central.

Tables and figures

Tables must be self-explanatory and should not duplicate data presented in figures. Prepare tables using Word or Excel table function tools (not spaces, tabs).

Figures should be provided in electronic format. Charts should be sent as Excel or PowerPoint files, or listed as data points.

Photographic/radiographic images should be sent as JPGs, minimum 300 dpi at minimum two inches square. Consult our digital art submission for editorial articles information, postscript to PDF instructions or digital camera specifications for details.


These should be cited in numerical order of appearance in the text. References in tables and figures should be numbered and cited where the table or figure is first mentioned in the text. Include the surnames and initials of up to 3 authors, followed by “et al.” when there are more than 3 authors.

CJS consensus process

Authors of consensus statements should be appointed by a committee of a representative organization. The subject or question being ­studied should be reviewed by the group and modified by the authors, if necessary. The manuscript should be circulated to the entire membership of the organization for comments. The manuscript should be revised by the authors and submitted to the committee for final review before submission to the journal. The manuscript will undergo independent review and revision at CJS before publication. The method of generating consensus should be defined in the article. It is generally sufficient to include a statement saying that the method is in accordance with the CJS consensus process (see Can J Surg 2013;56:365).

Clinical trial proposal

CJS considers manuscripts that propose a clinical trial. The article should include an evidence-based summary of the background to the question being answered. This may include preliminary data that have not been reported elsewhere. The clinical trial should have research ethics board approval. The article should in­clude information used to register the ­trials with a public trials registry, such as The trial authors should be prepared to modify the protocol based on reviews solicited by CJS. The journal and the authors will commit to publishing results of the clinical trial.

Manuscript submission

CJS has an online submission and review system at New users are required to register. We do not accept manuscript submissions via mail or email.

Your manuscript will be assigned a manuscript number. Use it to track your manuscript’s progress online in your Author Centre. You will be notified as soon as possible of the outcome of the peer review process. Decisions and queries will be communicated via email.


CJS is an open access journal and charges submission and article processing fees. All manuscripts will be charged a nonrefundable submission fee of $100 (Canadian funds), payable at the time of submission. This fee will be waived for authors affiliated with CJS sponsors and academic partners.

Accepted articles are subject to article processing fees of $800 (Research, Review and Continuing Medical Education articles) or $600 (Commentaries and Discussions in surgery), payable in Canadian funds at the time of acceptance.

Partial Or Complete Fee Waivers

CJS will waive all or part of its publication fees for the following authors:

Authors from lower income countries — CJS uses Research4Life‘s criteria to determine eligibility for publication fee waivers. Authors from Group A are eligible for a 100% fee waiver while authors from Group B are eligible for a 50% fee waiver.

Student authors — Author groups composed of: a) a majority of students who do not hold a doctoral degree (PhD or MD), and which b) contain a maximum of 2 PhD or MD holders, are eligible for a 25% discount on their publication fee.

If you fall into one of the above categories and would like to apply for a fee waiver, please email the editorial office before you submit your manuscript. Please include a complete author list including affiliations and completed degrees. Please do not request a fee waiver if you do not meet the above criteria as it will not be approved.


Upon acceptance, all authors must submit signed Licence to publish  and Financial disclosure forms. Authors of Research and Review articles must also submit completed Contributors’ forms (see the section on Authorship criteria). Where applicable, you may also be required to include

  • a signed Acknowledgement form from anyone whose contribution goes beyond administrative assistance and whom you want to name
  • a copy of written permission to reference a personal communication in your article (please include the person’s affiliation and the year in which the information was communicated)
  • a copy of written consent from any patient whose case is described or who is identifiable in an ­illustration
  • permission to reproduce material from another source for previously published tables or figures, signed by the copyright holder, usually the ­publisher

Review and publication process

Peer review

All submitted manuscripts are viewed by an editor. Manuscripts that are not ­suitable for CJS or that are of insufficient priority for publication are rejected promptly. Other manuscripts are sent for peer review. Peer reviewers’ identities are kept confidential, but author names are shared with ­reviewers. Manuscripts under consideration are privileged communications between authors and editors. Editorial staff discuss them only with the corresponding author and peer reviewers. Once a decision is made, authors are notified promptly and are sent a copy of the reviewer comments.


Accepted manuscripts are edited with a view to clarity, brevity, style and accuracy. Editors may add subheadings to enhance readability. An edited manuscript proof is sent to the corresponding author for approval. Note that all authors are responsible for the content of the manuscript, including copyeditor changes authorized by the corresponding author.


For information on reprints, see Reprints.

Editorial policies

Duplicate ­submission/­ publication

CJS considers manuscripts for publication on the understanding that they are not under simultaneous review with another publication and that they have not previously been published.

Authorship criteria

Authorship credit will be assigned only to individuals who meet ALL of the following criteria. Each author must have

  • contributed to study conception and design OR data acquisition OR data analysis
  • contributed to writing OR critically reviewing the article
  • approved the final version of the article submitted for publication

CJS’s authorship criteria are in accordance with the statement on authorship issued by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (

The acquisition of funding, data collection or general supervision of the research group does not justify authorship. Individuals who have made such a contribution to the manuscript should instead be listed in the acknowledgements section.

Obligation to register clinical trials reported in CJS

CJS endorses the statement of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (available at concerning the registration of ­clin­ical trials. The journal requires, as a condition of consideration for publication, registration of clinical trials in a public trials registry at or before the onset of patient enrolment. A clinical trial is defined as any research project that prospectively assigns participants to intervention or comparison groups to study cause-and-effect between a medical intervention and a health outcome. The journal does not endorse a specific registry but, when selecting a registry, authors should use the criteria mentioned in the statement of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors.


CJS publishes corrections for important errors related to scientific content. Factual errors, important errors in the author byline or affiliations, errors that cause ambiguity or change meaning in the article, missing or incorrect competing interests or funding statements, and missing or wrong references are corrected. Spelling mistakes, incorrect author degrees or contributor statements, missing or misspelled names in the acknowledgements, and errors in references are not corrected.


Comments regarding the journal articles may be communicated via social media. Follow us on Twitter @canjsurg.