head to foot regions are in the first coloumn. row headings are pain, skin changes, injury and swelling.

I am a primary care pediatrician with thirty years in practice, and now I have realized, if the paramedicals are trained well, they can do many work of the physician. One is collecting data from parents.

Apart from routine questions like " does you child has cold and cough" we encourage parents to ask other questions. One is the head to foot approach: the organs visible are listed from head to foot with mouth as the last as that has many sub headings; there are only four choices: Pain, skin changes like redness or itching, swelling or injury.

The paramedical sitting in the front desk needs to click the option. There are 14 major body areas, with 4 options each and making it 56 choices. We had place the head to foot areas as column and the 4 options as row headings.

Now, after development we think it's a strain for the paramedical.

My question

Till what number we can keep in the row heading? If transposed, there will be 14 columns, but user can quickly go that area once a picture is kept below each item, eye, head etc there will be only 4 rows. In short, what principle should be in row , and which should in a column?

  • Three different spelling of column in the question with title.
    – paparazzo
    Feb 19, 2017 at 18:19
  • I think you have this right, but I'd use a body figure instead, just like the answer from Mr Giggles says
    – Devin
    Feb 19, 2017 at 20:19
  • Mr. Giggles answer accepted and started working. Feb 20, 2017 at 2:56

2 Answers 2


Does it have to be a data table ? There seems to be a lot to read and a large area to navigate to get the right answer, which could lead to mistakes.

Have you considered instead of a table, drawing a bobble headed body to represent the options? The user would then click on the affected body area and then you could have a pop up or modal to choose the observation. The bobble head would allow the to be more selective on the head which had many options.

  • Thanks and this I will share with the developers and give the feed back. Feb 19, 2017 at 19:32
  • 1
    No problem. If it answered your question please mark it as accepted.
    – Mr Giggles
    Feb 19, 2017 at 20:01

A table is usually there to display information. Collecting data in form of tables is not a good experience. As the list expands (or even when there are 14 options) you will have a hard time looking at the options that can be marked. They are a whooping 14*4 = 56 at the moment. Too many things to look at.

I agree to what Mr Giggles has said and I believe a right approach would be to first mark which body parts actually have issues and then select what are the issues. To make it clearer, I am not introducing another screen in the flow.

But about the main question: What should be in a column and what should be in an row?

When you have a table, each column should be an attribute that you define and the row should be a entry which will share these attributes and values. Columns and rows are inter-changeable. However, keeping in mind the default scrolling action (which is vertical), the columns and rows are defined in this manner.

In your case, the attributes are "Pain, Skin Changes, Injury and Swelling" while the entries are "Head, Belly Button, Face etc." So in terms of representing the table, you are on spot. However, it is not a solution to what you are trying to do.

For more inspiration on table design: https://material.io/guidelines/components/data-tables.html

  • arrawalravi95, such answers, help us understand better and so is the link. I accept the answer, particularly, the fundamentals. Feb 20, 2017 at 18:04
  • Thank you! Kindly share your thanks by accepting the answer. :) Glad I could help. Feb 21, 2017 at 19:46

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