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The British Journal of Ophthalmology is an international peer-reviewed journal for ophthalmologists and visual science specialists describing clinical investigations, clinical observations, and clinically relevant laboratory investigations related to ophthalmology. Main features include articles on both clinical and laboratory sciences, up to date major reviews, editorials, education articles and letters. There are sections for ‘Innovations’ and ‘Global issues’ where surgical, diagnostic and therapeutic innovations and manuscripts of regional interest to geographic areas of the world respectively, are published.

Authors can choose to have their article published Open Access for a fee of £1,950 (plus applicable VAT). Authors can also choose to publish their article in colour for the print edition for a fee of £250.

Submission to British Journal of Ophthalmology implies that the work described has not been accepted for publication elsewhere, that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere and does not duplicate material already published.

Submission guidelines

For guidelines on submission and editorial policies for British Journal of Ophthalmology please refer to the BMJ Author Hub. Here you will find information on planning your research through to submitting and promoting your research.

Article types and word counts

Please review the below specifications of each article type and the required article lengths, illustrations and table limits, and references counts. The word count excludes the title page, abstract, tables, acknowledgements and contributions, and references. Manuscripts should be as succinct as possible.


A timely succinct commentary on any aspect of clinical or laboratory ophthalmology, usually in relation to the subject matter of a paper to be published in the same issue. All editorials are commissioned.

Word count: up to 1500
Tables/illustrations: up to 2 images/tables
References: up to 25 references

Original research

Original research should include the following:

  • Title
  • Synopsis/Precis: a 35 word summary of the main findings or outcomes of the study for the ‘At a Glance’ article
  • Structured abstract: (250 words, headings: “Background/Aims”, “Methods”, “Results”, and “Conclusion”)
  • Introduction
  • Materials and methods
  • Results
  • Discussion

Clinical science: up to 2500 words, up to 5 images/tables, 25 references
Laboratory Science: up to 2500 words, up to 5 images/, 25 references


Reviews will address any aspect of clinical or laboratory ophthalmology. Most articles are commissioned but uninvited reviews are also welcome; prior discussion with the Editor is recommended.

Unstructured abstract: up to 250 words
Word count: up to 3000 words
Tables/illustrations: up to 5 images and tables
References: up to 100 references

Global issues

Global issues emphasise epidemiology and public health issues especially from the underdeveloped countries.

Summary: up to 250
Word count: up to 2000
Tables/illustrations: up to 5 images/tables
References: up to 25


Innovations describe innovative techniques in any field of ophthalmology including ophthalmic surgery, drugs, optics, and devices. Any relevant preclinical and clinical data should be included. The chief criterion for publication will be the novelty of concepts involved and potential for clinical applications.

Summary: up to 250
Word count: up to 1000
Tables/illustrations: up to 5 images/tables
References: up to 25


eLetters are electronic responses to published British Journal of Ophthalmology articles posted online. To submit an eLetter use the submit a response option in the content box menu seen in all abstract/extract, Full text and PDF views of a published article. All eLetters are subject to editorial approval.

Word count: 300 words
References: 5 references


British Journal of Ophthalmology is willing to consider publishing supplements to regular issues. For more information on supplement proposal please see the BMJ Author Hub.