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Mawrtyr2008's picture

Thank you for your post

I think that this whole concept of "placebo" is a little skewed, as has been mentioned above, because if it is indeed doing something then its working and therefore not a placebo as we would generally define it.

I thought this was such an interesting thing you said and it deserved more discussion. I completely agree with your point here, and it brought up a whole host of questions for me.

- Why are we even using the word "placebo" when it's recognized that soemething is changing the experience of symptoms? Placebo used to mean something like "a chemically inert substance" but now it's seeming to take on the meaning of a catchall explanation for mechansisms of action other than those attributed to a specific drug's. (Marissa posed essentially this question in a different format. I liked how she brought up whether the placebo effect could work in tandem with pharmacology... that maybe it isn't a total process, but one part of a much larger process that ends in a patient's relief from a given symptom.)

- Why are we continuing to equate the example of placebo administration with "lying to a patient"? Don't we know just as little about placebo mechanisms of action as we do about SSRI mechanisms of action? If not more!

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