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The Placebo Effect in Clinical Practice


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Table of Contents

1 Introduction 2 Variations in Placebo Response 3 How Does Placebo Differ from No Treatment 4 The Treatment Situation 5 Expectation 6 Conditioning and the Placebo Response 7 Psychotherapy and Placebo 8 The Ethics of Placebo Use in Research (with Michaella Jamiel) 9 Using the Placebo Response

About the Author

Walter A Brown, MD, is clinical professor of psychiatry at Brown University (Provident, RI) and clinical professor of psychiatry at Tufts University (Boston, MA). Dr Brown's research on the placebo effect spans more than 25 years and he is widely regarded as an authority on the subject. He has authored or co-authored more than 160 peer-reviewed papers, more than 30 of which have been academic papers on the placebo effect.


"This is a valuable addition to the medical literature. It helps clinicians and researchers to understand the validity and presence of the placebo effect. It is a well-written book, easy to understand, with the added benefit of helping readers apply its concepts to clinical practice." -- Doody's "We need to understand the placebo effect much better. It is not just interference in clinical and medical research activities. This volume by Dr. Walter Brown greatly helps us to understand the placebo effect in a new way." -- Stefan Pallanti, MD, PhD, American Journal of Psychiatry "...well structured and covers the topic with great breadth and depth. The book focuses on the use of placebo not only in psychiatry but also in other specialties - anaesthesia, gastroenterology and cardiology. In doing so, the reader is able to appreciate the variation of placebo effects across the board and its comparability to active treatment in terms of patient outcomes. This book provides a balanced overview of the placebo response in clinical practice that sheds some light and clarity for the reader on what can otherwise be perceived as a complex phenomenon." -- The British Journal of Psychiatry "Brown offers a fascinating historical account in the first chapter of this book; he points out that in the last 5 years or so, the wheel has come full circle, and placebos are used without deception in certain conditions. He raises the ethical issues related to the use of placebos in clinical settings and in research response. This slim volume is well written and offers a well-argued case. It is highly recommended for clinicians and researchers alike." -Masum Khwaja and Dominic Beer, International Journal of Social Psychiatry "Extremely readable, this book is a must for anyone involved in biomedical research, clinical practice or the pharmaceutical industry, or even for the interested lay reader." --Nature Medicine "The Placebo Effect in Clinical Practice is a fascinating little volume with significant implications for clinical research, as well as clinical practice. Never has such a slim book produced so many quotable excerpts[.]" -- Norman M. Goldfarb, Journal of Clinical Research Best Pracitces "[A] fascinating little volume with significant implications for clinical research, as well as clinical practice." - Journal of Clinical Research Best Practices

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