There's a table in a document I'm translating: it provides ECG data on patients receiving a drug. The columns are: code of patient (his unique ID), age of patient, date of ECG test, results of ECG test. There are several ECG test results per patient (taken over a year).

If I translate the name of the table word-by-word from Russian as "Individual ECG findings", would this be understood as "ECG findings per individual patient", or would this be understood as "standalone ECG findings"?

I mean, would the adjective "individual" be understood by the reader as "related to this or that particular individual" or rather as "findings considered separately (individually) from other findings"?

From the Cambridge Dictionary:

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Maybe I'm "over-thinking" this issue, and the sentence could easily be understood both ways, depending on the context?

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    Why not just say "per-patient"? – John Feltz Nov 14 '16 at 19:05
  • @JohnFeltz - I thought of this exact phrase, and omitted the mention of it specifically to check whether it would be proposed by a native speaker. Do you think it would be better than "individual findings"? I might use it then. Frankly, I think that in my context even "individual" would be understood, since the table contents are plain, but still this issue started to nag me. (0: – CowperKettle Nov 14 '16 at 19:06
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    "Individual" findings, without more context, is vague. If I had patient data from 15 hospitals, then "individual" could refer to the hospitals. If you want to refer to patients, use per-patient; if you want to refer to the hospitals, use per-hospital. Then there is no ambiguity. "Individual" can mean "human being", and it can also mean "single instance of something" – John Feltz Nov 14 '16 at 19:11
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    I would wonder what individual meant there. I would expect simply "ECG Findings". The table would be clearer without the word. It's on the patient row. If the person reading the table doesn't understand that the findings relate to the ECG taken on that patient on that date, they are in the wrong profession. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Nov 15 '16 at 16:58
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    @TRomano - thank you for your comment! My colleagues quoted from the ICH E3 Guideline: "Listing of Individual Laboratory Measurements by Patient". I agree that dropping the word "individual" would be okay, but as a translator one becomes wary of dropping too much of the original wording, especially in highly regulated documents. – CowperKettle Nov 15 '16 at 17:12

The phrase you are looking for is

Individual ECG findings by patient

assuming your table is setup so the multiple readings of a single patient are grouped together and possibly sorted by date.

"Individual" in this case would mean a single ECG measurement as opposed to an average of the measurements which might have been used for each patient.

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