Association between Therapeutic Alliance and Adherence in Outpatient Schizophrenia Patients.

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Association between Therapeutic Alliance and Adherence in Outpatient Schizophrenia Patients.

Clin Psychopharmacol Neurosci. 2019 May 31;17(2):273-278

Authors: Chang JG, Roh D, Kim CH

Abstract
Objective: Although various clinical factors that affect medication adherence in schizophrenia have been studied, the role of the therapeutic alliance has not been studied in detail. Accordingly, we investigated the association between medication adherence and therapeutic alliance in patients with schizophrenia treated in a community outpatient clinic in Korea.
Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 81 outpatients who met the DSM-IV-TR criteria for schizophrenia were analyzed. Therapeutic alliance was measured via patient-self-report questionnaires consisting of 12 questions, which evaluate both “affective bond” and “collaborative bond” of alliance. We investigated the relationship between medication adherence and therapeutic alliance through correlation and regression analyses.
Results: Overall therapeutic alliance was weakly associated with medication adherence (r=0.268, p<0.05). Among two factors of therapeutic alliance, “affective bond” was associated with adherence (r=0.302, p<0.05), but collaborative was not. Regression analysis showed that therapeutic alliance significantly predicted medication adherence even after adjustment for duration of treatment, insight, and symptom severity.
Conclusion: Maintaining a favorable therapeutic alliance is associated with medication adherence in schizophrenia. Further, treating patients in a frank and genuine manner might be important to improve adherence.

PMID: 30905127 [PubMed]