Guidelines for Reporting of Figures and Tables for Clinical Research in Urology


      In an effort to improve the presentation of and information within tables and figures in clinical urology research, we propose a set of appropriate guidelines. We introduce 6 principles (1) include graphs only if they improve the reader's ability to understand the study findings; (2) think through how a graph might best convey information, do not just select a graph from preselected options on statistical software; (3) do not use graphs to replace reporting key numbers in the text of a paper; (4) graphs should give an immediate visual impression of the data; (5) make it beautiful; and (6) make the labels and legend clear and complete. We present a list of quick “dos and don'ts” for both tables and figures. Investigators should feel free to break any of the guidelines if it would result in a beautiful figure or a clear table that communicates data effectively. That said, we believe that the quality of tables and figures in the medical literature would improve if these guidelines were to be followed.

      Patient summary

      A set of guidelines were developed for presenting figures and tables in urology research. The guidelines were developed by a broad group of statistical experts with special interest in urology.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Urology
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


      1. EAU. Guidelines for reporting of statistics for clinical research in urology.

        • Avram MJ
        • Shanks CA
        • Dykes MH
        • Ronai AK
        • Stiers WM
        Statistical methods in anesthesia articles: an evaluation of two American journals during two six-month periods.
        Anesth Analg. 1985; 64: 607-611
        • Vickers AJ
        Writing up clinical research: a statistician's view.
        J Gen Intern Med. 2013; 28: 1127-1129
        • Vickers Andrew
        What is a p-Value Anyway?: 34 Stories to Help You Actually Understand Statistics.
        Addison-Wesley, Boston, MA2010
        • Tufte ER
        The Visual Display of Quantitative Information.
        Graphics Press, Cheshire, CT2001
        • Cleveland WS
        The Elements of Graphing Data.
        Wadsworth Advanced Books and Software, Monterrey, CA1994
        • Heiberger RM
        • Holland B
        Statistical Analysis and Data Display.
        Springer, Berlin, Germany2015