American Journal of Bioethics 9 (12):39-47 (2009)

Abstract
Physicians commonly recommend ?placebo treatments?, which are not believed to have specific efficacy for the patient's condition. Motivations for placebo treatments include complying with patient expectations and promoting a placebo effect. In this article, we focus on two key empirical questions that must be addressed in order to assess the ethical legitimacy of placebo treatments in clinical practice: 1) do placebo treatments have the potential to produce clinically significant benefit? and 2) can placebo treatments be effective in promoting a therapeutic placebo response without the use of deception? We examine evidence from clinical trials and laboratory experiments bearing on these two questions. The conclusion is reached that based on currently available evidence, it is premature to judge whether placebo treatments are ethically justifiable, with the possible exception of acupuncture for pain relief
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DOI 10.1080/15265160903316263
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References found in this work BETA

The Placebo Concept in Medicine and Psychiatry.A. Grunbaum - 1986 - Psychological Medicine 16 (1):19-38.
Exploiting Placebo Effects for Therapeutic Benefit.Colin Cheyne - 2005 - Health Care Analysis 13 (3):177-188.
A Limited Defense of Clinical Placebo Deception.Adam J. Kolber - 2007 - Yale Law & Policy Review 26:75-134.

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Citations of this work BETA

Placebo and Deception: A Commentary.Anne Barnhill & Franklin G. Miller - 2015 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 40 (1):69-82.
Deception as Treatment: The Case of Depression.Charlotte Blease - 2011 - Journal of Medical Ethics 37 (1):13-16.
When Subtle Deception Turns Into an Outright Lie.Abraham P. Schwab - 2009 - American Journal of Bioethics 9 (12):30-32.

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A Limited Defense of Clinical Placebo Deception.Adam J. Kolber - 2007 - Yale Law & Policy Review 26:75-134.
Semiotics and the Placebo Effect.Franklin G. Miller & Luana Colloca - 2010 - Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 53 (4):509-516.

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