Author guidelines

The JCM actively welcome contributions from existing or budding authors. We focus on publishing articles with direct clinical relevance, and are especially keen on acupuncture articles. If your article is already written, please submit according to the guidelines below. If you have not yet written an article, it may be a good idea to check with us to find out if we are broadly interested in the proposed subject. Please note that we cannot guarantee to accept any article for publication until we have reviewed it. All accepted articles are then subjected to an editorial process. This involves us responding to you with any queries, comments or suggested changes. 


1. Articles should be emailed to the editor as Microsoft Word or Apple Pages documents.


2. Articles should begin with a brief abstract and a list of keywords.


3. References should be given wherever possible for quotations, specific information referred to in the text, statistics etc. See articles 12 and 13 below for referencing guidelines.


4. Chinese texts should be referred to by Pinyin name and common English translation e.g. Su Wen or Suwen (Plain Questions).


5. Illustrations: Photographs should be of sufficient quality for print (ideally 300dpi). If tables or charts are included it is generally best if our designer produces a final version of these.


6. Acupuncture points should be referred to using the pinyin name and point number, as follows:


Lung LU - e.g. Chize LU-5

Large Intestine L.I. - e.g. Hegu L.I.-4

Stomach ST - e.g. Zusanli ST-36

Spleen SP - e.g. Taibai SP-3

Heart HE - e.g. Shenmen HE-7

Small Intestine SI - e.g. Houxi SI-3

Bladder BL - e.g. Feishu BL-13

Kidney KID - e.g. Yongquan KID-1

Pericardium P - e.g. Daling P-7

Sanjiao SJ - e.g. Waiguan SJ-5

Gall Bladder GB - e.g. Fengchi GB-20

Liver LIV - e.g. Xingjian LIV-2

Ren REN - e.g. Guanyuan REN-4

Du DU - e.g. Mingmen DU-4


7. Herb names: We use Eastland Press's Materia Medica (3rd edition) as our standard. For example: Dang Gui (Angelicae sinensis Radix), Shu Di Huang (Rehmanniae Radix preparata), Mu Li (Ostreae Concha).


8. Herbal prescriptions should give the pinyin name first followed by the English name as used in Eastland Press's Formulas and Strategies (2nd edition), e.g. Wu Ling San (Five Ingredient Powder with Poria).


9. The JCM uses UK spellings by default rather than USA spellings. This is to maintain consistency when searching the website. The main differences are: i. the use of 's' rather than 'z' in many words, e.g. civilisation (rather than civilization), ii. Greek based spellings e.g. anaemia (anemia), colour (color) etc.


10. Capitalisation: We prefer to avoid unnecessary capitalisation, so many terms are left uncapitalised, e.g. qi, blood, damp, wind, yin, yang etc. The zangfu are normally capitalised to distinguish from biomedical organs, although in some  exclusively traditional Chinese medicine articles (for example historical or theoretical subjects) this capitalisation can be avoided.


11. We like to print a short - one or two sentence - biography of each author. Please make it clear if you want your contact details published with this biography.


12. Citations in the text of the article can be done in two styles: either as superscript numerals (that refer to their corresponding endnotes), or in the author-date style, which should be formatted as follows:


Single author: (Name, date)

Two authors: (Name & Name, date)

More than two authors: (Name et al., date)


13. References should be formatted as follows:



Author (surname, initial), Date (in brackets), full stop. Title of Book (italics), full stop. Edition (if relevant), full stop. Publisher : Place of publishing.



Author (surname, initial), Date (in brackets), full stop. Title of article, comma, Title of Journal (italics), comma, volume number (issue number if relevant in brackets), comma, page numbers (e.g. pp. 12-19).


Note: If there are more than three authors, use 'et al.' after the third author.


Online articles

Online-only material should additionally include either the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) of the article, or the URL where the article is available with the date the article was accessed.


14. Copyright: Due to the extensive editing involved in producing high quality articles for the JCM, our policy is that copyright of the finished article is co-owned by both the author and the JCM. We expect to be consulted by the author regarding republication of the article in another journal (or anywhere online), and whilst no unreasonable objections will be put forward, we ask that this is not done for at least one year following initial publication. Similarly, we always consult with the author if we receive any requests to publish the article elsewhere. In over 30 years of publishing we have found this to be an amicable and workable way of conducting affairs.