Instructions for Authors

Subject areas and specific scope of the Journal

The Mediterranean Journal of Rheumatology (Mediterr J Rheumatol, e-ISSN 2529-198X, supported and published by the Greek Society for Rheumatology and Professional Association of Rheumatologists) is an international peer-reviewed, platinum open-access journal covering issues of pathophysiology, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of musculoskeletal, autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases, which are prevalent in countries of the Mediterranean basin and neighboring regions. Topics of rehabilitation, musculoskeletal care, patient education, and continuing professional development in rheumatology are prioritised to comprehensively cover the challenges encountered by patients, nurses, students, and specialists in rheumatology and allied specialties.   


Types of published articles and their priority for the Journal

This Journal publishes the following types of articles: Original Research articles, Narrative and Systematic Reviews, Expert Opinions, Case-based reviews, Images, Lectures, Reports on Clinical and Pathological conferences, Interviews with leading experts, Research Protocols-Proposals and Letters to the Editor. Items of exceptional interest to a broad professional audience are prioritised and considered for fast-track processing.


Preparation and formatting of all sections of manuscripts, cover letters, and supplementary materials

The Journal only accepts manuscripts submitted online at http://www.mjrheum.org/submit.

The Journal follows the international format of medical papers (Vancouver system), and adheres to the updated guidelines of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf). The Journal editors also adhere to ethical norms and resources publicised by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) (http://publicationethics.org/resources) and the World Association of Medical Editors (http://www.wame.org/policies-and-resources).

All articles should be written in a Word file (*.doc), be double-spaced, in standard A4 page size, with margins of no less than 3.5 centimeters. All articles must be numbered at the top center, beginning with the title page. Upon acceptance, the authors are allowed to do only minor editing corrections which do not relate with the scientific or clinical component of their accepted manuscript. Articles should have the following format:

  • Title
  • Abstract and keywords
  • Abbreviations
  • Main text
  • ORCID iDs of all co-authors
  • Author contributions
  • Acknowledgements
  • Conflicts of interest disclosures
  • Funding
  • Ethics approval and written informed consents statements
  • References
  • Tables
  • Figure legends

Figures are submitted in separate file(s).


1. Title page

This should include:

  • The paper title (should not exceed 30 words; all main keywords should be reflected in the title).
  • The name, middle name initial (optional), and last name of each author. The ORCID iD of each co-author with full information about correct names, biography, affiliations, publications, and other academic activities should be provided at the submission (http://orcid.org/).
  • Affiliations of each author (department/unit, organisation/university, city, country) and each author's email address.
  • The full name, address, phone number, fax and e-mail address of the corresponding author.

2. Abstract and Keywords

The abstracts of original or review articles should be structured and limited to 250 words. For other types of articles, non-structured abstracts with up to 150 words are acceptable. Editorials, lectures, imaging quizzes and letters to the editor should not include abstracts.

In original articles, abstracts should briefly state the objectives, patient characteristics, main methods, pertinent and novel results (presenting absolute numbers with percentages, P values with 95% Confidence Intervals, avoiding unnecessary precision in digits after decimal points), and conclusions specifically related to the reported study. Abstracts of systematic reviews with meta-analyses can be structured similarly. Copying different parts of the manuscript and providing references is unacceptable. Overly detailed and disproportionately long or short abstracts can be returned to the authors for amendments. Abstracts of narrative reviews should briefly describe search strategies (databases, keywords, datelines).

Dividing abstracts into the following sections is recommended: Objective/Aim, Methods, Results, and Conclusion. Providing 4-6 keywords corresponding to the structured terms is also recommended. The authors may look up the NIH MeSH Browser for help.

3. Main Text

Research articles should have the following format:

Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, and Discussion. In the Introduction, state the rationale and objective of the work. All relevant keywords of the study should be explored in this section.

Case studies should have the following format: Introduction, Case Description, and Discussion of similar published cases.

All other types of articles are formatted according to the demands and goals of the authors.

Original and review articles should not exceed 4,500 words from Introduction until Discussion and should have less than 15 Tables and/or Figures. Review articles should contain detailed search strategy describing systematic and comprehensive searches through multidisciplinary (Scopus, Web of Science) and specialist databases (MEDLINE/PubMed, CINAHL, PEDro, SPORTDiscus, Global Health/CABI). The adherence to the following recommendations is advisable: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21800117

Imaging quizzes and Letters to the Editor should not exceed 3 double-spaced pages, and 4 Tables or Figures.

All other articles should not exceed 2,500 words from Introduction until Discussion and 10 Tables or Figures.

Any pharmaceutical substances should be written by their common (generic) names, except biologicals that are written by both their common and commercial names.

Abbreviations should be explained at their first appearance in the text. Subsequently, only the abbreviation should be given.

4. Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements should be addressed to individuals who provided help but do not meet the ICMJE authorship criteria, and institutions which supported the article. It is strongly recommended to acknowledge efforts of authors' editors and editing agencies in line with the Good Publication Practice (GPP3) guidelines.
Grant funding and any other financial support should be also stated.

5. References

References are numbered according to the order they appear in the text, as exponents after a full stop or comma. In review articles, references should not exceed 150. In Original research articles references are up to 50. In Imaging quizzes, case reports, and Letters, the references should be limited to 10, and in other types of articles, they should not exceed 30.

Cite primary sources rather than secondary and tertiary items (e.g., textbooks).  Cite one reference to a scientific fact. Multiple citations to a single fact should be avoided (one fact – one reference).

Each reference includes author last names and initials (when more than six authors, only the first six are written followed by “et al.” ), the title, the journal name in short, the year of publication, the volume and page numbers, e.g.: Altman R, Alarcon G, Appelrouth D, Bloch D, Borenstein D, Brandt K, et al. The American College of Rheumatology criteria for the classification and reporting of osteoarthritis of the hand. Arthritis Rheum 1990;33:1601-10.

The use of abstracts should be avoided, but if it is absolutely necessary, the term [abstract] should follow the paper title. Journal supplements should include the supplement number after the volume, e.g.: Arthritis Rheum 1999;42(Suppl1):238. If the reference is a book chapter, it should include the following details: Authors’ last names and initials, chapter title, publication year, city, publisher, chapter pages, e.g.: George DL. Arthritis with skin and nail changes. In: Klippel JH, Deppie PA, editors. Practical Rheumatology. London: Mosby; 1995. P.21-34.

Articles appearing ahead of print should have after the journal name the Digital Object Identifier (DOI).

For further guidance on the style and integrity of referencing, please refer to the updated recommendations of the ICMJE. It is strongly recommended to follow the recommendations of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA).

6. Tables

Tables should be written in a file compatible with the Word file (*.doc), and numbered according to the order they appear in the text. Table numbers and titles must be placed above the table, with any explanatory notes below it.  Tables should have a portrait orientation and contain up to 10 columns. The tables should stand alone (be self-explanatory), and their information should not be repeated in the text.

7. Figures & Videos

Figures are numbered according to the order they appear in the text. Original (not adapted from elsewhere) figures are encouraged.  All figures must be clear, and legible, and any numbers and letters must be of adequate size, so that they can be easily read when resized. The legends should permit interpretation of the figures without reference to the text.

If a patient’s picture is used, the patient must not be recognisable, otherwise a written consent is required.

Figures should be at their actual size and in portrait orientation.
Two standard widths are used and figures should fit in one (8.5 × 22.0 cm) or two (17.0 × 22.0 cm) columns.

Figures should be preferably supplied in the following formats: PowerPoint (*.ppt), Adobe Illustrator (*.ai, *.eps), tiff (*.tif), JPG (*.jpg), Photoshop (*.psd) files in grayscales or in RGB colour mode in appropriate resolutions:

  • 300 dpi for color figures
  • 600 dpi for black and white figures
  • 1200 dpi for line-art figures

Panel letters should be in Arial bold 14 pt, capital letter (A, B) while letters in figures (axes), should be in Arial 8 pt, lower case letters. No type should be smaller than 6 pt.
If the quality of the figures does is not satisfactory, the authors will be asked to resubmit the figures at the required quality.

Preferred Settings for Video Materials:

  • Audio codec: AAC
  • Sample audio bit rate: 128 kbit/s
  • Video codec: H.264
  • Video resolution: 480 vertical lines or better
  • Format: MPEG-4 (mp4) container
  • Accepted formats: (mov, avi, mpg, mpeg, mp4, mkv, flv, wmv).

Video files should be smaller than 2GB.

8. Permissions

If you have material, tables or figures from another copyright-protected source, you must obtain written permission from the copyright holder to reuse them.

9. Correction of Proofs

Upon acceptance of an article, the corresponding author will be notified and provided with the galley proofs and will be asked to check for typographical and other technical errors. The corrected proofs should be returned within 48 hours.

Research reporting guidelines

Major research reporting guidelines for authors are listed below:

PRISMA (http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/prisma/)

STROBE (http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/strobe/)

CONSORT (http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/consort/)

SRQR (http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/srqr/)

CARE (http://www.equator-network.org/reporting-guidelines/care/)

Authors, reviewers and editors of the Journal are also recommended to read the following global editorial association guidelines:




Research and Publication Ethics

The authors should state in the Methods section of the article that any medical research involving human subjects has been performed according to the WMA Declaration of Helsinki  (http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/b3/index.html.pdf?print-media-type&footer-right=[page]/[toPage]) and with the approval of an appropriate Ethics Committee. Research on animals must follow internationally recognised guidelines. It should be stated whether the work has been funded in part or in whole by a public source, public legal entity, pharmaceutical agency, or a medical scientific company.

The Research Integrity Expert can be consulted for clarifying ethical issues in submissions and published articles.

Editors of this journal endorse the principles of the integrity, transparency and quality of pre- and post-publication communications set by the Sarajevo Declaration on Integrity and Visibility of Scholarly Publications.

Authorship criteria and authors’ contribution details, plagiarism, conflict of interest

Submission to the Journal implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content, and they meet all the four criteria of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/roles-and-responsibilities/defining-the-role-of-authors-and-contributors.html).

Acceptance of papers is constrained by legal requirements regarding libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism. In the accompanying letter, the corresponding author states that they have permission from all co-authors to submit for possible publication, that the manuscript does not contain any unethically copied ideas, texts or graphics, and that it has not been published in whole or in part elsewhere (with the exception of publishing a conference abstract). A disclaimer can be requested from authors of review articles about authenticity of the text and graphics. The corresponding author must disclose any conflict of interest that any co-author may have. Please consult the recommendations on conflicts of interest of ICMJE (http://www.icmje.org/conflicts-of-interest/).

All submissions to the MJR are checked for similarities by iThenticate software (https://www.ithenticate.com/). Our editors ask all authors to ensure that their submissions are original, free of any copied texts, graphics, or ideas, and written professionally to provide our readership with new reads/texts, which are not submitted or published elsewhere. The authors of review articles are also asked to add Disclaimer stating that no part of the article contains recycled texts and graphics.

Corrections and Retractions

Editors of this Journal may publish correction notes for minor mistakes in published articles or follow the retraction guidelines of the COPE in case of publication errors, research misconduct and violations of the copyrights (https://publicationethics.org/retraction-guidelines).


Complaints and Appeals

All complaints, particularly the authors', reviewers', and editors' unhappiness with the responsible editors' decisions, delays in the peer review and editorial management, will be processed within 7-10 days by the Production Editor (info@mjrheum.org) and Research Integrity Officer, involving external independent experts if necessary. The MJR editors declare adherence to the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) recommendations on complaints and appeals (https://publicationethics.org/core-practices).




Ethics in publishing

The Journal editors adhere to the editorial policies, ethical guidance and other recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE; www.icmje.org), the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE; http://publicationethics.org/resources/guidelines), the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME; www.wame.org), the Council of Science Editors (CSE; www.councilscienceeditors.org) and the National Information Standards Organisation (NISO; http://www.niso.org/workrooms/piej).

Authorship criteria and authors’ contribution details

Submission to the Journal implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content, and they meet all the four criteria of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/roles-and-responsibilities/defining-the-role-of-authors-and-contributors.html).

Authorship requires:

(a) Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND

(b) Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND

(c) Final approval of the version to be published; AND

(d) Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.



Conflict of interest

All authors are requested to disclose any conflict of interest including any financial or personal relationship with other people or organizations within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence their study (http://www.icmje.org/conflicts-of-interest/).  All authors are required to provide a Conflict of Interest Statement which is available at http://www.icmje.org/downloads/coi_disclosure.zip. This form should be uploaded with the revised manuscript upon submission. The forms should be uploaded as a single file.

The corresponding author must disclose any conflict of interest that any co-author may have.  If there is no conflict of interest then the authors must state in the separate section: 'Conflict of Interest: The authors declare no conflict of interest'.


Clinical trials

Manuscripts of clinical trials must include a copy of the trial protocol along with the complete statistical analysis plan, a flow diagram and a completed trial checklist (the CONSORT checklist and template flow diagram can be found at http://www.consort-statement.org/consort-statement/flow-diagram. The trial registration number must be included on the title page of the manuscript of an enrolled and registered clinical trial.

Registration of clinical trials  

Registration in a public trials registry is required for publication of a clinical trial in the Mediterranean Journal of Rheumatology in accordance with recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE, http://www.icmje.org). Trials must register at or before the beginning of patient recruitment.

Trial registries are listed at  http://www.icmje.org:


Papers should be written in standard British English. The Journal's Production Editor can help authors of accepted articles to polish language. However, submissions that require complete rewriting may be rejected.


Statistical methods used in the study should be clearly stated. Unique or complex statistical methods should be referenced. Complex analyses must be performed with the help of a qualified analyst.

The actual p values should preferably be written, whether significant or not. Confidence intervals should be presented when possible.  Complex analyses, such as Cox and logistic regression analysis, should be presented in detail, to ensure reproducibility of the results.

The Statistics Editor of this Journal may request access to the primary data in order to perform independent analysis and evaluation of the work.


Use the internal system of units (SI). If other units are used, please give their equivalent in SI.

Drugs and chemicals

The source of reagents should be indicated (name, city, state, country) when initially referred to. Drugs and chemicals should be mentioned by their generic name. Biologicals should be mentioned by both their generic name and trademark.  Trademarked names should be capitalized and their source distinguished.



Manuscripts are screened upon submission and only those that comply with the submission requirements enter the peer review process.

Peer review policy

Our Editorial Board follows recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/roles-and-responsibilities/responsibilities-in-the-submission-and-peer-peview-process.html#three) and the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) on peer review (http://publicationethics.org/files/Ethical_guidelines_for_peer_reviewers_0.pdf).
The Journal’s peer-review model is double-blind, and each submission is subjected to peer review by at least two external expert reviewers who are not part of the Editorial Board. In case of disagreement between the reviewers, the final decision rests with the Editor(s). Authors may recommend or exclude potential reviewers, but the ultimate selection rests with the Editor(s).
The first editorial decision is taken within 21 days upon initial submission. 

The MJR credits its reviewers by publicising their names in the annual acknowledgements. All reviewers are also encouraged to list their accomplishments on the journal’s Publons profile at: https://publons.com/journal/101214/mediterranean-journal-of-rheumatology

First submission

Upon successful submission, the manuscript will receive a number, and an acknowledgement will be sent to the manuscript’s corresponding author by email. The manuscript number should be used by authors in all communication with the Editorial Office.  Manuscripts not considered by the editors as strong candidates for publication will be returned to the authors within a few days. Otherwise, manuscripts will be sent to reviewers. After the review, the decision of the Editor will be sent to the corresponding author via email.

Resubmission of manuscripts

Sometimes, authors are asked to submit a revised version of their manuscript for further review.  Revised manuscripts must be sent to the Editorial Office within 6 months of the date of first decision.  The revised manuscript should have all changes underlined and in a cover letter, authors should include all comments made by the Reviewers and Editors and point-by-point response to these comments.

Proofs & Publication Schedule

Proofs will be sent to the author(s) to be checked. It is the authors’ responsibility to make sure that the accuracy and quality of the manuscript, figures, and tables in the proofs are correct. Authors should return the proofs with incorporated any changes within 48 hours by e-mail. Further changes to manuscript are not allowed.  Questions concerning proofs should be directed to the Publisher. After proofs have been received by the Production Editor, the work will appear online in up to two (2) weeks.

The Journal issues are published online on a strict quarterly schedule: by March 31, June 30, September 30, December 31 of each year.



Offprints must be ordered in advance by filling in an order form. Offprint requests and payments must be forwarded to the Publisher.


Announcements of Congresses and scientific meetings that may be of interest to the readers of the Mediterranean Journal of Rheumatology should be sent to the Editorial Office at least 2 months before the date of publication. Announcements will be publicised on the Journal website free of charge.

Press releases

The Mediterranean Journal of Rheumatology selects exceptional articles for press release. Upon selection of an article, the Editorial Office will inform corresponding authors for approval.



All information about advertisements in the Mediterranean Journal of Rheumatology is obtained from the Publisher.

Special Issues

Articles submitted for consideration to be published in Special Issues go through the exact same peer review process as articles submitted for consideration to be published in the quarterly issues. 
Guest Editors of Special Issues include members and non-members of the Editorial Board. Appointment of Guest Editors is always made according to specialty and availability.

Last updated: February 22nd, 2024