The Ethics of the Placebo in Clinical Practice
Journal of Medical Ethics 2004 December; 30(6): 551-554
While discussions of the ethics of the placebo have usually dealt with their use in a research context, the authors address here the question of the placebo in clinical practice. It is argued, firstly, that the placebo can be an effective treatment. Secondly, it is demonstrated that its use does not always entail deception. Finally guidelines are presented according to which the placebo may be used for clinical purposes. It is suggested that in select cases, use of the placebo may even be morally imperative. The argument is illustrated by three case vignettes.
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Miller, Franklin G.; Colloca, Luana (2009-12)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 ...
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