For many years, there has been a gender discrepancy in orthopedic surgery. Because research has an impact on promotions, researchers for a study sought to determine the patterns in female authorship in three journals over the last 25 years for both first and senior authors. From 1995 through 2020, all publications from the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, and Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research were downloaded in 5-year intervals, and data for first and senior authors were retrieved. The first and senior writers’ genders were identified using the proven Genderize method. Chi-square tests were used to examine the demographics of the first and senior author cohorts. Logistic regression models were used to examine trends in female authorship while adjusting for year and journal. 

In the journals examined, 5,636 people were recognized as first authors and 4,572 as senior authors. For 82.59% of the writers, the gender was determined. From 1995 to 2020, female first authorship grew considerably (6.70% to 15.37%, P<0.001). Similarly, female senior authorship grew considerably between 1995 and 2020 (8.22% to 13.65%, P<0.001). Overall, there was no statistically significant variation in the gender mix of authors among journals (P=0.700 first author and P=0.098 senior author). However, women were much more likely to publish as first or senior authors in subsequent years, regardless of the journal (P<0.001 for the first author and P<0.001 for senior authors).

Female authorship in prestigious orthopedic journals rose significantly between 1995 and 2020, with inter-journal disparities in senior author gender discrepancy. Despite the fact that female orthopedic surgeons publish at rates comparable to or greater than their participation in the field, more study into the continuation of gender discrepancies in orthopedics is required.