Intended for healthcare professionals


A meta-analysis of the association between adherence to drug therapy and mortality

BMJ 2006; 333 doi: (Published 29 June 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;333:15

Adherence to a prescription might be a specific treatment

In their article Simpson et al. believe that the adherer effect
“may be a surrogate marker for overall healthy behaviour” (1).
But to regard this effect as a result of the general life style is only
one possible explanation. The adherence to a prescription might be an
effective therapeutic intervention on its own. The so-called
Ordnungstherapie (therapy of order) (2) has always maintained that the
introduction of a clear principles into the life of a patient is
beneficial. As modern life dissolves all natural pacemakers and as chronic
diseases are mostly characterized by the lack of rhythms and time
structure (3), it might be possible that the regular intake of a drug is a
specific treatment as such and not only a secondary phenomenon.

(1) Simpson SH, Eurich DT, Majumdar SR, Padwal R, Tsuyuki RT, Varney
J, Johnson JA: A meta-analysis of the association between adherence to
drug therapy and mortality, BMJ 2006; 333:15

(2) Brüggemann W: Ordnungstherapie im Sinne einer Lebensordnung, in:
Brüggemann W (ed): Kneipptherapie, Springer, Berlin, 1980, pp 222 - 228

(3) Hildebrandt G, Moser M, Lehofer M: Chronobiologie und Chronomedizin,
Hippokrates, Stuttgart, 1998, p. 33

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

04 July 2006
Georg Ivanovas
private surgery