Can science explain the placebo effect?
Correspondingly, is the placebo effect scientific?
The placebo effect may have no scientific basis, according to a study published in this week's New England Journal of Medicine. Doctors have long known that about 35 percent of all patients given a placebo will get better, and they had assumed it was because the patients believed the dummy medication would help them.
Additionally, how does the placebo effect affect the brain? Only in the past few years have scientists developed the tools to directly investigate how placebos work in the human brain.” They found that the placebo treatment caused the brain to release more opioids, a chemical produced by the body and released by the brain, to relieve pain.
One may also ask, how real is the placebo effect?
Placebos often work because people don't know they are getting one. The researchers discovered that the placebo was 50% as effective as the real drug to reduce pain after a migraine attack. The researchers speculated that a driving force beyond this reaction was the simple act of taking a pill.
What type of bias is the placebo effect?
Another type of bias relevant for trials assessing the effect of placebo is attrition bias -that is, the bias caused by patients dropping out of the trial.