A 26-year-old man attempted suicide by taking 29 capsules of an experimental drug obtained from a clinical trial. His vital were alarming, but treatment improved his condition. Later, a doctor told him the pills weren't antidepressants, as the man believed. That's because he'd been randomized into the control arm of the trial. Yes, that's right: He overdosed on placebos.
From a security standpoint, the only thing that matters is that our soldiers are effective at killing people and breaking things. Does acupuncture help accomplish that? We presented one opinion last week. Now, here's a second viewpoint on the matter.
People who already believe in the benefits of "brain training" may be more likely to participate in a study that is explicitly about the benefits ... of brain training. Obviously, such self-selection will bias the results, and the placebo effect can magnify them.
Acetaminophen is recommended as a first-line treatment for acute lower back pain according to medical guidelines. However, this recommendation has not been supported by research. A new
Yes by Kenneth E. Legins In 1903 Mark Twain wrote of Christian Science: "The power which a man's imagination has over his body to heal it or make it sick is a force which none of us is born without. The first man had it, the last one will possess it." The power of the mind over the body is often indisputable, even among the staunchest defenders of the scientific method. The biologic effect of hope or faith, which scientists sometimes refer to as the placebo effect, is little understood in the medical community.