chapter  6
18 Pages

Placebo and Nocebo Responses

BySIBYLLE KLOSTERHALFEN, PAUL ENCK

The placebo response is the bene®cial effect of a treatment with a drug or other medicinal tool that is thought to not be speci®c to the drug but rather to ``unspeci®c'' circumstances of the treatment. The nocebo response is the worsening of symptoms due to these unspeci®c factors. In clinical trials of new compounds, these effects are controlled for to not overestimate the ef®cacy of the new drug; in clinical routine, placebo and nocebo responses occur with any treatment, but cannot easily be separated from the speci®c effects.