Abstract: The aim of this meta-analysis was to explore whether mental representations, derived from the common-sense model of illness representations (CSM), were able to predict adherence in chronically ill patients. Electronic databases were searched for studies that used the CSM and measured adherence behaviour in chronically ill patients. Correlations from the included articles were meta-analysed using a random-size effect model. A moderation analysis was conducted for the type of adherence behaviour. The effect sizes for the different mental representations and adherence constructs ranged from −0.02 to 0.12. Further analyses showed that the relationship between the mental representations and adherence did not differ by the type of adherence behaviour. The low-effect sizes indicate that the relationships between the different mental representations of the CSM and adherence are very weak. Therefore, the CSM may not be the most appropriate model to use in predictive studies of adherence.
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