Instructions to author



Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine is an Open Access journal and aims to be a leading worldwide forum for research in physical and rehabilitation medicine, aiming to increase knowledge in evidence-based clinical rehabilitation. Contributions from all parts of the world and from different professions in rehabilitation are encouraged. It is the official journal of the International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (ISPRM), the UEMS European Board of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (EBPRM), and the European Academy of Rehabilitation Medicine (EARM) and also published in association with the European Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (ESPRM).

Original articles, being the majority of published papers, Reviews (including Educational reviews), Special reports, Short communications, Case reports, and Letters to the Editor are published. Clinical studies on rehabilitation in various patients groups, within neurological and musculoskeletal as well as in other relevant rehabilitation areas, reports on physical and behavioural treatment methodology, including rehabilitation technology, development and analysis of methodology for outcome measurements, epidemiological studies on disability in relation to rehabilitation, and studies on vocational and socio-medical aspects of rehabilitation will be considered for publication. The journal emphasizes the need for randomized controlled studies of various rehabilitation interventions, the use of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) as a background for reports when appropriate, and the use of modern psychometric methodology in treating and reporting data from ordinal scales. Reports using qualitative methodology are also accepted, providing that the length of the paper is within the stipulated range.

In Review papers, which may be invited or non-invited, different current aspects should be covered, and systematic reviews are given priority. Please consult the Guidelines for Reviews. The Educational reviews – also published in cooperation with ISPRM and EBPRM – aim to cover recent development in key areas of rehabilitation presented with an educational as well as scientific approach. Special reports can cover current aspects of rehabilitation, such as papers on treatment procedures, organization, education, or of professional political nature, not being strictly scientific. In Letters to the Editor previous published papers may be commented, but also new topics may be taken up in a short form. For short communications and case report see further below concerning their length.

Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine is greatly in favour of progress towards open access to published material. For further information concerning the present policy of the journal see the open access policy for Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine. Also, note the possibility for the author(s) to deposit their manuscript at their own website or university repository, as seen below. There is also a possibility for the authors to obtain immediate open access at an extra cost.

Preparing for submission of Original articles and Letters to the Editor

Submission of a manuscript is held to imply that it has not previously been published and is not otherwise submitted for publication, except as an abstract (which in that case has to be stated). Submission should be made online at If problems with the submission or creating an account please contact the webmaster e-mail.

In writing your paper, you are encouraged to review articles in the area you are addressing including those that have been previously published in the journal, and to reference them where you feel it is appropriate. This will enhance context, coherence, and continuity for our readers. After revision the references should be checked to see if there are new references available. Submit the manuscript (including tables and figures) as a styled Microsoft Word file and photographs as separate EPS or TIFF files with a resolution of at least 300 dpi. Black-and-white digital images should be in gray scale mode and colour images saved in CMYK, not index or RGB, colour mode. For further information please contact the Editorial office.

It is possible to upload one manuscript file and three image files at a time. If you need to upload more image files than three, you will be given the opportunity to do so after pressing "Upload". Please name the manuscript file according to the formula "Firstauthorname.doc" and any image files "Firstauthornamefig1.doc" etc. When uploading revised manuscripts, please name the manuscript file manuscript number + "ver" + version number in Roman numerals, eg. 123456verIII.doc.

Should you have questions regarding submission online, contact us via e-mail.

The corresponding author will be notified that the manuscript has been received.

Checklist. Before finally submitting your paper, please refer to the checklist and verify that everything has been taken care of.

Language. All papers should be written in English. It is essential that the language is irreproachable. If the Editorial Board should consider it necessary, manuscripts will be subjected to language examination at the author's risk and expense. Authors whose first language is not English are recommended to have their manuscripts checked carefully before submission.

Duplicate publication. It is not acceptable to submit papers already published elsewhere or simultaneously submit a paper to another journal. Furthermore, the paper must not be under review in another journal. Accompanying the manuscript should be a copy of all references mentioned in the particular paper still not published and articles by the same authors on the same subject submitted elsewhere.

Suggestions for reviewers. It is advisable to give suggestions on 3-4 reviewers that are well versed in the area of the manuscript. However, it is the Editor who will make the final decision on the choice of reviewers.


All persons designated as authors must participate sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility in its contents. For criteria for authors see "Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals" at In essence authorship credit should be based on 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version to be published. Authors should meet conditions 1, 2, and 3. Participation solely in the acquisition of funding or the collection of data does not justify authorship, nor does general supervision of the research group. The author who submits the manuscript should state if the authors meet these criteria. If there are 5 authors or more, a statement on each author's contribution must be described in the accompanying letter. In multicenter trials group members not meeting these criteria should be listed, with their permission, in the acknowledgement or appendix. All persons mentioned in the Acknowledgement should have accepted this to the responsible author.

Deposit of manuscript

When submitting a paper to our journal you are allowed to deposit the paper in a manuscript form at your website or university repository with acknowledgement where it is considered for publication. After acceptance the printed article (pdf) may be posted similarly, with a link to the publisher's online version.

Type and length of papers

Word limits of main text (without references, figures and tables:
Original articles and Special reports: Abstract: max 200 words, Introduction: max 500 words, Material and Results: 2000-2500 words, Discussion: max 1500
Short communications: Abstract: max 200 words, Introduction: max 400 words, Material and Results: 800-1000 words, Discussion: max 800
Case reports: max 2,000 words
Letters to the Editor
: max 1,600 words
Reviews: max 5,000 words, see Guidelines for reviews.

Limitations in number of references
Original papers: 35–40
Short communications: max 15
Case reports: max 10
Letters to the Editor: max 10
Reviews may be considerably more, see Guidelines for reviews

Publication categories

Reviews may be invited on specific topics, but submitted reviews without previous invitation are also welcome. However, it is advisable in such cases to submit a short summary of the paper first for Editorial comments regarding whether publication is feasible. We will also publish invited "Educational reviews".

Letters to the Editor commenting on a published article or covering other matters of general interest are welcome. They should, however, be kept short, and have only a few references. When commenting a published paper, the authors of that paper will also be invited to write a comment to be published together with the Letter. The Editor reserves the right to determine which Letters should be published.

Review papers, Letters to the Editor and in some cases Special reports will be published as soon as possible, whereas other papers will usually be published in the general order they have been accepted for publication. All papers will, however, be available on the Internet as soon as they have been proof-read and corrected.

Conflict of interest and funding

Authors are responsible for recognising and disclosing financial and other conflicts of interest that might bias their work. They should acknowledge all financial support for the work and other financial or personal connections to the work in the manuscript. Where necessary, it should be stated that the funding agency e.g. a pharmaceutical or instrumental company, has had no influence of the interpretation of data and the final conclusions drawn. Thus, authors must disclose any commercial associations that might impose a conflict of interest in connection within the study.

Ethics and consent

When reporting studies on human subjects, indicate whether the procedures followed have been approved by an Ethics committee (in accordance with ethical standards on human experimentation and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 1983). Do not use patients' names, initials, or hospital numbers, especially in illustrative material. Identifying information should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and pedigrees unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the patient (or parent or guardian) gives written informed consent for publication. Informed consent for this purpose requires that the patient be shown the manuscript to be published.

Clinical trials

The researchers are strongly advised to register clinical trials to public trial registers, such as

Formatting guidelines

Manuscripts should be typewritten, double-spaced throughout, on one side of the paper, with ordinary margins. Papers should usually be divided into Title page, Abstract, Introduction (including clear statement of the aim of the study), Methods, Results, Discussion and References.

All abbreviations should be explained the first time they are used - unless it is a standard unit of measurement - and thereafter the use of abbreviations should be consistent throughout the paper. Avoid excessive use of abbreviations. Never use abbreviations in the article's title or in the Abstract.

Title page: A separate title page is necessary and should bear

  1. title of the article,

  2. full names of the authors (first name and last name), and highest academic degree

  3. institutions of origin,

  4. a short title

Abstract: Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine requires structured abstracts for all original articles. The following headlines should be used where appropriate: Objective, Design, Subjects/Patients, Methods, Results and Conclusion. The total number of words should not exceed 200. A list of from 3-8 key-words or terms from Medical Subject Headings ( suitable for indexing terms should be typed at the bottom of the abstract page.
Below the abstract: Title of journal; The guarantor's complete address, including e-mail.

Introduction: State the purpose of the article and justify the study, why is it needed. Summarize the rationale for the study. Give only pertinent references; do not review the subject extensively.

Methods: Describe the selection of the subjects. Give details about randomisation. Present characteristics of the subjects/patients; if pertinent use ICF terms from corresponding short forms of core sets (J Rehabil Med 2004; Suppl 44 and Disabil Rehabil 2005; 27: issues 7 & 8). Describe methods for any blinding of the observations. Identify methods, equipment/materials, and procedures in sufficient details, including pertinent references, to allow others to reproduce the study. Names and addresses of the manufacturers and/or suppliers of equipment and/or materials used in a study must be identified by names, town, and stated the first time the equipment/materials is mentioned. For statistical methods, see below.

Results: Present results in logical sequence in the text, tables, and figures. Avoid repeating information in text, tables and figures. Restrict tables and figures to those needed to explain arguments and to assess their support. Use figures as an alternative to tables with many entries. Do not write in the text what variable are seen in a table but which are the main findings. Thus write "In table xx is seen" or give the reference to the specific table in parenthesis after the main information seen in the table is presented.

Discussion: Start with one paragraph summary of the main findings. Then place your study in context, referring to other relevant work. Do not repeat in detail data or other information presented in the Introduction or Result section. Discuss the limitation of the methods and the results presenting the clinical relevance of your study and the implications for future studies. Address the issue of effect magnitude, in terms of both the statistics reported and the implications of the results. You should not use a specific headline for conclusion, but if pertinent, start the last paragraph with "In conclusion,".


Information on the design, use, and array of reporting guidelines can be found on the website for the Enhancing the Quality and Transparency of Health Research (EQUATOR) network and they should be used for JRM manuscripts when applicable: 1) CONSORT for randomized controlled trials (; 2) Strengthening the Reporting of Observational studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) for observational studies (; 3) Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) for systematic reviews and metaanalyses (; 4) Standards for the Reporting of Diagnostic accuracy studies(STARD) for studies of diagnostic accuracy (; and 5) Case Reports (CARE) for case reports (

Statistics (click here)

Studies concerning Rasch analysis

Qualitative studies

The journal appreciates studies using qualitative methodology (see guideline). Data collection strategies such as selection of subjects, methods of collection, type of data, the relationship of researcher to subjects/settings should be presented as also data analysis concerning the methodological approach and the analytic process, with clear definitions of concepts and categories/themes and how these were developed and how they relate to data. Present quality and validity of data and analysis as strategies to enhance quality of data, e.g. triangulation, respondent validation, application of critical thinking to analysis as attention to the influence of the researcher on data collection and on analysis, and critical approach to the status of data collected. Discuss applicability for theory development and practice.


References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text. Identify references in text by Arabic numerals in parenthesis as follows: "as shown by Smith (5)":... if two authors; "Smith & Jones (6)";... if more than two authors; "Smith et al. (7)". The style of references must follow the Vancouver system and for the abbreviations of journal titles; please consult the List of Journals Indexed in Index Medicus.

Accepted but still unpublished material should be referred to as "In press". (References to submitted but not accepted material are not permitted but should be mentioned as footnotes.)

The most common types of references are exemplified below; for a full list, see Reference instructions. [homepage on the Internet]. New York: Association of Cancer Online Resources, Inc.; c2000-01 [updated 2002 May 16; cited 2002 Jul 9]. Available from:

Tables and figures

A letter from the publisher must accompany material that has been published previously in another publication stating that the authors have permission to reproduce the material.

Tables are to be numbered consecutively with roman numerals. Each table should be typed on a separate sheet and should have a descriptive heading which is self-explanatory. Explain all abbreviations used in a footnote to the each table, or when many abbreviations are used in several tables, refer to the first table where the abbreviations are explained.

All illustrations should be considered as figures. Each graph, drawing, or photograph should be numbered in sequence with Arabic numerals. All figures should have legends, listed on a separate sheet. Each figure should be identified by the name of the journal (JRM), the author's name, and the figure number. In cases where it is not obvious, the top should be indicated. Line drawing and lettering should be large enough to sustain photo-reduction (min 300 dpi).

All gray-scale illustrations are published without any further fee, but if colour figures are needed the cost will be 500 euros/page which has to be paid by the authors.

The review process

All manuscripts are first reviewed by one of the Editors. Some papers may be rejected at this stage as they do not meet basic scientific principles or deal with topics beyond the scope of the journal. All other manuscripts will be entered into our peer review system and are usually sent to at least two reviewers (within or outside the Editorial Board) with special expertise in the area. The review is not blinded according to the decided policy of the journal. The manuscript will also be sent to a special statistical consultant for evaluation of the statistical methods used and the statistical results, where considered appropriate. After receiving the comments from the reviewers, it will be decided by the Editors whether the manuscript should be accepted directly, which in practice is rare, subjected to a minor or major revision before decision about publication can be made, or rejected at this point. The revised manuscript is usually, if not only minor changes required, reviewed by the reviewers, sometimes including a third reviewer, if there are special reasons, before making the final decision about publication, and if necessary after some further revision. The guidelines to the reviewers can be found on the homepage of the journal here.


In an unusual situation in which you wish to withdraw your paper, this can be accomplished by sending e-mail to the editorial office at to request deletion of the paper from the working paper archive.

Publication fee

After a paper has been accepted, the author(s) will be charged a publication fee of 1300 € per paper. This fee can be waived partly in special cases after agreement.

License to publish

It is a condition of publication that author sign "An exclusive licence to publish" on the account of Foundation for Rehabilitation Information. Copyright of text and figures/tables are maintained with the authors as well as unrestricted publishing rights.

Proofs and off-prints

Page proofs are sent directly from the printing office to the corresponding author, via e-mail as pdf-files. It is his or her full responsibility to read and check the proofs against the manuscript. One proof should be signed and returned to the Editorial Office within four days by airmail. Offprints may be ordered on the offprint order form accompanying the page proof.


Lengthy papers may be published as supplements, the full cost being borne by the author. Supplements are subject to editorial revision before publication.

Address of the Editorial Office