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Clinical Trials to Test the Effectiveness of Treatments

In general, placebos can Effect how patient perceive their Condition and encourage the body's chemical processes for relieving pain and a few other symptoms,[5] but have no impact on the disease itself. Improvements that patients experience after being treated with a placebo can also be due to unrelated factors, such as regression to the mean (a natural recovery from the illness). The use of placebos in clinical medicine raises ethical concerns, especially if they are disguised as an active treatment, as this introduces dishonesty into the doctor-patienr relationchip and bypasses informed consent. While it was once assumed that this deception was necessary for placebos to have any effect there is now evidence that placebos can have effects even when the patient is aware that the treatment is a placebo.

Author(s): Christine Gillis

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