The relationship of sickness impact profile scores to outpatient treatment compliance
Patient noncompliance to prescribed therapeutic regimen is a significant problem hindering the provision of optimally effective health care. This study examines the problem of noncompliance and offers a potentially predictive tool for practical use by the medical community. The sample for this study was a group of 50 Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease outpatients who were participating in a nationwide Division of Lung Disease (DLD) study of respiratory therapies. Upon inclusion into the DLD study, each participant was evaluated by a team of physicians and was given a psychological test composed of 12 subcategories, the Sickness Impact Profile (SIP). This test is a scaled measure of patient-perceived illness impact in terms of dysfunction or disruption of daily activities. It was asserted that those who perceived themselves more ill would be more compliant to prescribed treatment. The treatment in the DLD study required each patient to take 20 minutes daily respiratory therapy in the home. Average daily time-use calculations were recorded at the end of a five month period. These figures were statistically related to the previously mentioned SIP scores. There was no significant relationship between the total SIP score and subsequent compliance or noncompliance to the treatment regimen. However, two subcategory scores were used to accurately predict compliance in 74% of the participants. It was the conclusion of the investigator that selected subcategory scores of the SIP could be used as predictors of patient compliance for this sample.