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newbie question: repeating field type issue


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I know there must be a simple solution to this but I have not been able to find it in the FM knowledgebase or online help--perhaps I didn't know the key search word(s).

I am a physician trying to create a simple electronic medical record. I would like to be able to list the patient's meds without having to create a new field for each new med (e.g. med1, med2, med3, etc.) Obviously, each patient may have a different number of medications.

On my main patient table is a field called "meds"; I use a 2nd table (meds_lookup) with a field called meds_choices to allow the user (me) to fill in the meds field in the patient table.

I can do this with a repeating field technique and set the max repeats to like 20 or some other high number that wouldn't be exceeded. However it then puts 20 fields on the patient layout which obviously is a poor use of screen real estate. It also seems like a major kludge and I have read that one should minimize the use of repeating fields because it is problematic with queries (finds). Also, if I am trying to incorporate medication dose, frequency, route, reason, on that same line I don't think the repeating field setup will work well.


I think that what I need is to use the portal function with a vertical scrollbar and maybe allow space to see no more than 5 fields at one time on that portal. Unfortunately, I haven't mastered the portal functionality yet.

I am a monkey see, monkey do person when it comes to something like this and I would greatly appreciate someone walking me through this or giving me an example.


Doug Lazenby

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