In a review of recent research, international experts say there is increasing evidence that fake treatments, or placebos, have an actual biological effect in the body.
The doctor-patient relationship, plus the expectation of recovery, may sometimes be enough to change a patient’s brain, body and behavior, experts write.
“It’s not that placebos or inert substances help,” said Linda Blair, a Bath-based psychologist and spokeswoman for the British Psychological Society. Blair was not linked to the research. “It’s that people’s belief in inert substances help.”