Here’s a very interesting item about the placebo effect.
Yes, it is fun to hear about experiments in which people can be fooled into feeling better, or worse.
But more importantly, this professor and psychologist discusses how a patient’s attitude, and a physician’s warmth and (apparent) competence, can impact our response to treatment. Both medical professionals and patients can learn from this research.
More controversially, she also hints that a focus on side effects could, done wrong, hinder treatment. She notes: “The mere fear of side effects makes those effects more likely.” And asks: “How can we inform patients of risks or side effects without causing unnecessary suffering?” That topic could spark fascinating debate.
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[Last updated 11-20-2019]