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Placebo Effect Almost As Effective As Actual Drugs

Topics: Health & Wellness | Add A CommentBy admin | August 30, 2009

But what fun would getting well be without long lists of bizarre side effects like explosive diarrhea, sleepwaling, and compulsive gambling?


This ad for the antidepressant Epiphanix has
one of the longer lists of side effects we’ve seen

In spite of the fact that I’m in retirement from a long and illustrious career of recreational drug use, when it comes to medicinal drug use, it’s almost impossible, for instance, to get me to take so much as an aspirin for a headache. I’m convinced that 90% of what ails us will fix itself, and that popping a pill every time we feel a little discomfort actually impairs our body’s ability to do its own repair work. Which is why I find it fascinating that research is showing that the placebo effect is mysteriously becoming more effective in clinical trials. Something we hear little about is the fact that drugs that go to market have, on occasion, barely beaten the placebo effect to get approved. This fairly recent development is inspiring new research into the mechanism behind the placebo effect, and how it might be put to work in place of drugs. Imagine a world without the common prescription drugs with the bizarre side-effects listed here. TV advertising would never be the same.

Another common side effect of prescription drugs:

Could you pass the sugar please?