Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Learning More About The Placebo Effect

Date:
July 6, 2009
Source:
Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics
Summary:
In a recent trial, a sample of alcohol-dependent patients received naltrexone, acamprosate or placebo for 12 weeks. While there were no differences in outcomes between treatment groups, those who believed they had been taking active medication consumed fewer alcoholic drinks and reported less alcohol dependence and cravings. That is, irrespective of actual treatment, perceived medication allocation predicted health outcomes.

In a recent trial, a sample of alcohol-dependent patients received naltrexone, acamprosate or placebo for 12 weeks. While there were no differences in outcomes between treatment groups, those who believed they had been taking active medication consumed fewer alcoholic drinks and reported less alcohol dependence and cravings. That is, irrespective of actual treatment, perceived medication allocation predicted health outcomes.

Double-blind placebo-controlled trials are intended to control for the impact of expectancy on outcomes. Whether they always achieve this is, however, questionable.

Reanalysis of a clinical trial of naltrexone and acamprosate for alcohol dependence investigated this issue further. In this trial, 169 alcohol-dependent patients received naltrexone, acamprosate or placebo for 12 weeks. In addition to being assessed on various indices of alcohol dependence, they were asked whether they believed they received active medication or placebo.

While there were no differences in outcomes between treatment groups, those who believed they had been taking active medication consumed fewer alcoholic drinks and reported less alcohol dependence and cravings. That is, irrespective of actual treatment, perceived medication allocation predicted health outcomes. These results highlight the differences between treatment administration in clinical trials and standard medical practice, a discrepancy that may sometimes decrease the validity of these types of trials.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Colagiuri et al. Expectancy in Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trials: An Example from Alcohol Dependence. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, 2009; 78 (3): 167 DOI: 10.1159/000206871

Cite This Page:

Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. "Learning More About The Placebo Effect." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 July 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090622064701.htm>.
Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. (2009, July 6). Learning More About The Placebo Effect. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090622064701.htm
Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. "Learning More About The Placebo Effect." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090622064701.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) New research shows that women who suffer from PTSD are three times more likely to develop a food addiction. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins