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Placebo effect getting stronger?

2009-08-25 16:01:12.379918+00 by Dan Lyke 4 comments

A Wired article claims the placebo effect is getting stronger (Via SE). It also mentions that there are geographic and cultural differences on the strength of the placebo effect, and that pharmaceutical companies have been venue shopping clinical trials.

[ related topics: Drugs Health Sociology ]

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#Comment Re: made: 2009-08-25 19:01:57.704714+00 by: topspin

markd, I think you meant those south manhattan cartels.

I don't commonly watch much TV, but recently a family member was kicked back in the hospital for a few days so I saw a bit more than usual. I found the ads for various drugs interspersed with the ads for personal injury attorneys from the use of drugs comical. I'm unsure if I should root for Cthulhu or Satan.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-08-25 18:02:15.20989+00 by: markd

I think those south american placebo cartels have been increasing the strength to try to hook more of the american market.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-08-25 17:23:32.610812+00 by: Dan Lyke

I think the argument is that we're trusting drugs more and more, so the placebo effect is getting stronger because we have more belief that the white pill is going to work.

Which is an argument actually being made in favor of direct-to-consumer drug marketing.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-08-25 17:13:30.657099+00 by: ebradway

I'm only about halfway through the article in my print copy of Wired. But isn't the placebo effect only seeming to increase as the treatments focus on more and more subtle brain chemistry/psychological conditions? Is it not so much that the placebo effect itself is getting stronger - but the realm of medicine being explored is more strongly related to the workings of the placebo effect?

What if we found a drug that enhanced the placebo effect?!?