New survey: the placebo effect

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About the author

Prof G

Professor of Neurology, Barts & The London. MS & Preventive Neurology thinker, blogger, runner, vegetable gardener, husband, father, cook and wine & food lover.

4 comments

  • Prof G, what would be your answer to this question:

    "Do you think the placebo effect accounts for all the self-reported benefits of open-label or non-blinded therapies?"

  • Re: "Prof G, what would be your answer to this question:Do you think the placebo effect accounts for all the self-reported benefits of open-label or non-blinded therapies?"

    I would say possibly; the point I am trying to make is that unless you do a blinded uncontrolled studies it is very difficult to know. There are exceptions to this principle, but in a disease such as MS that is so variable we need blinded controlled trials. It is also necessary to have controlled studies to look for rare side effects for example cancers or opportunistic infections.

  • "in a disease such as MS that is so variable we need blinded controlled trials"

    Thanks for your reply. I don't see that anyone could disagree with that. Who funds the trials is another question – especially if you a wanting to research an area that will not lead to huge pharma profits.

  • Re: "Who funds the trials is another question – especially if you a wanting to research an area that will not lead to huge pharma profits."

    That is our problem at the moment; the majority of our putative neuroprotective compounds are off patent. It is a big struggle to get funding. I am hoping the multiple lumbar puncture LP study works; I believe it will make a big difference in the long-term. Speed is the essence; you only have to read this blog to get the gist of MS'ers frustration and in some cases desperation.

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