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BackgroundStandards for reporting surgical adverse events vary widely within the scientific literature. Failure to adequately capture adverse events hinders efforts to measure the safety of healthcare delivery and improve the quality of care. The aim of the present study is to assess the prevalence and typology of perioperative adverse event reporting guidelines among surgery and anesthesiology journals.Materials and methodsIn November 2021, three independent reviewers queried journal lists from the SCImago Journal & Country Rank (SJR) portal (, a bibliometric indicator database for surgery and anesthesiology academic journals. Journal characteristics were summarized using SCImago, a bibliometric indicator database extracted from Scopus journal data. Quartile 1 (Q1) was considered the top quartile and Q4 bottom quartile based on the journal impact factor. Journal author guidelines were collected to determine whether adverse event reporting recommendations were included and, if so, the preferred reporting procedures.ResultsOf 1,409 journals queried, 655 (46.5%) recommended surgical adverse event reporting. Journals most likely to recommend adverse event reporting were: 1) by category surgery (59.1%), urology (53.3%), and anesthesia (52.3%); 2) in top SJR quartiles (i.e. more influential); 3) by region, based in Western Europe (49.8%), North America (49.3%), and the Middle East (48.3%).ConclusionsSurgery and anesthesiology journals do not consistently require or provide recommendations on perioperative adverse event reporting. Journal guidelines regarding adverse event reporting should be standardized and are needed to improve the quality of surgical adverse event reporting with the ultimate goal of improving patient morbidity and mortality.

Original publication




Journal article


International journal of surgery (london, england)

Publication Date



Catherine and Joseph Aresty Department of Urology, Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA, USA.