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Placebo effect

Analysis and Comment (3)

Placebos have played an important part in medicine for two centuries. Placebos have played an important part in medicine for two centuries. jared/ flickr

To understand placebo, first take it out of medicine’s black box

Placebos have a longer history than medicine as we know it, and have a huge effect on all kinds of diseases and health conditions. But it may now be time to rethink their role. The placebo made its debut…
Placebo treatments can be effective in treating some conditions by the “self-healing” capabilities of the brain. Placebo treatments can be effective in treating some conditions by the “self-healing” capabilities of the brain. melancolie en velours/Flickr

Mind over matter? The ethics of using the placebo effect

There’s good evidence showing expectations to get better have significant effects on how patients suffering a variety of ailments feel. This is called the placebo effect from the original meaning in Latin…
Despite placebos’ reputation as worthless therapy, many medical practitioners still use them. Despite placebos’ reputation as worthless therapy, many medical practitioners still use them. FML/Wikimedia Commons

Not just smoke and mirrors: placebo’s place in modern medicine

Belief is a powerful medicine but the term “placebo” has negative connotations. In modern evidence-based medicine, treatments considered worthless are described as no better than placebos. But this description…