AS CHILDREN, most of us knew that when we were sick we were to follow "doctor's orders" (and our parents were generally the enforcers to ensure that we did). Once I became an adult and began practicing medicine, I found that many patients—even I, for heaven's sake—do not always follow doctor's orders. We can be, as they say, noncompliant.
Noncompliance with prescribed medications for chronic diseases (eg, most dermatologic diseases) is a particularly prevalent problem, approaching 50% in many studies.1 Moreover, noncompliance with prescribed therapies is a problem that does not go away; noncompliant patients often return without achieving the improvement they sought. Although some studies have not found a relationship between patient compliance and better health outcomes,2 there is growing evidence that in most clinical situations, noncompliance with therapies has a negative effect.3 Furthermore, intriguing evidence suggests that compliance itself may be good for patients' health independent of the effectiveness of the therapy itself. In one study,4 patients were prescribed either a medication or placebo after a myocardial infarction and followed up carefully for recurrent infarcts or death. Whether prescribed a placebo or an active agent, patients who took 80% or more of the protocol medication had substantially lower 5-year mortality rates than did those who were less compliant.
Thank you for submitting a comment on this article. It will be reviewed by JAMA Dermatology editors. You will be notified when your comment has been published. Comments should not exceed 500 words of text and 10 references.
Do not submit personal medical questions or information that could identify a specific patient, questions about a particular case, or general inquiries to an author. Only content that has not been published, posted, or submitted elsewhere should be submitted. By submitting this Comment, you and any coauthors transfer copyright to the journal if your Comment is posted.
* = Required Field
Disclosure of Any Conflicts of Interest*
Indicate all relevant conflicts of interest of each author below, including all relevant financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including, but not limited to, employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speakers’ bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued. If all authors have none, check "No potential conflicts or relevant financial interests" in the box below. Please also indicate any funding received in support of this work. The information will be posted with your response.
Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.
Download citation file:
Web of Science® Times Cited: 9
Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.
More Listings atJAMACareerCenter.com >
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a link to reset your password.
Enter your username and email address. We'll send instructions on how to reset your password to the email address we have on record.
Athens and Shibboleth are access management services that provide single sign-on to protected resources. They replace the multiple user names and passwords necessary to access subscription-based content with a single user name and password that can be entered once per session. It operates independently of a user's location or IP address. If your institution uses Athens or Shibboleth authentication, please contact your site administrator to receive your user name and password.