TITLE

Deliberate use of placebos in clinical practice: what we really know

AUTHOR(S)
Harris, Cory S.; Raz, Amir
PUB. DATE
July 2012
SOURCE
Journal of Medical Ethics;Jul2012, Vol. 38 Issue 7, p406
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Increasingly a focus of research as well as media reports and online forums, the use of placebos in clinical medicine extends beyond sugar pills and saline injections. Physician surveys conducted in various countries invariably report that placebos are routinely used clinically, impure placebos more frequently than the pure ones, and that physicians consider them to be of legitimate therapeutic value. Inconsistent study methodologies and physician conceptualisations of placebos may complicate the interpretation of survey data, but hardly negate the valuable insights these research findings provide. Because impure placebos are often not recognised as such by practitioners, they remain at the fringe of many placebo-related debates, hence quietly absent from discussions concerning policy and regulation. The apparent popularity of impure placebos used in clinical practice thus presents unresolved ethical concerns and should direct future discussion and research.
ACCESSION #
77480744

 

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