In this section: General guidance on symbols | Guidance on usage and presentation of commonly used symbols | Selecting and adding symbols and characters

### General guidance on using symbols and special characters

In general symbols should be avoided in text, with use reserved for within brackets or tables or wherever brevity is important. Symbols should be used when expressing dosages (e.g. 5 mg/kg/day) or in mathematical equations. See also guidance on usage of common symbols.

Special characters should be used, where available, to represent names or words accurately (e.g. Marušić 2010).

Only symbols and special characters available in RevMan can be used in a Cochrane review. Do not copy and paste symbols or special characters from external sources into RevMan, as this can cause errors on publication.

### Guidance on usage and presentation of commonly used symbols

Symbol | Description | Usage | Spacing |
---|---|---|---|

+ | plus, and | One space either side | |

− | minus Note: the minus symbol is different to the dash available on most keyboards. The minus sign is available as a symbol in RevMan. | One space either side in mathematical equations, but no space between the minus sign and the number for a negative number e.g. Standard negative pressure rates range from −50 mmHg to −125 mmHg. Note: for equations, see Statistical and mathematical presentation. | |

/ | per or divided by | Use '/' instead of 'per' where 'per' is otherwise cumbersome 10 mg/kg (not 10 mg per kg) | No space on either side, e.g. 10 g/L |

< | less than (e.g. for percentages) fewer than (e.g. for people) | One space either side | |

> | greater than more than | One space either side | |

= | equals | One space either side | |

& | and | The ampersand symbol should only be used if it is part of a brand name (e.g. Procter & Gamble) or the title of a publication (e.g. Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism). | One space either side |

% | percentage | The percentage sign can be used in a block of text when it is used with a numeral. e.g. Fewer than 90% of the participants completed the study. Use 'per cent' instead of '%' when starting a sentence and when the number is written in full (i.e. not a numeral). e.g. Three per cent of people suffer from . . . | There is no space between the number and the percentage sign, e.g. 15%. |

™, ® | Trademark (® for registered; ™ for unregistered) | The trademark symbols are not normally used in Cochrane reviews. | If used, the symbols should be written immediately after the brand name they apply to, with no separating space, e.g. Nexium®, Backup Exec™ software. |

° | degree symbol | Use to indicate degrees of arc, e.g. when measuring joint flexibility, or temperature. | For degrees of arc, the degree symbol follows the number without any intervening space, e.g. 43°. For temperature, there is a space between the number and the degree symbol, but no space between the degree symbol and the letter that indicates the scale being used, e.g. 100 °C, 212 °F. Note: degree symbols are not used for temperatures measured on the Kelvin scale, e.g. 373.15 K. |

### Selecting and adding symbols and special characters

Many different symbols and special characters are available for use in RevMan. They may be inserted using the 'Insert symbol...' option from the 'Edit' menu or by using codes.

Selecting symbols using the RevMan 'Insert Symbol' tool: