White Paper-rowanstudent

Working Hypothesis 1:

The therapeutic and physiological effects that placebos have on a person will ultimately be more beneficial than prescription drugs in curing minor health conditions such as pain relief and depression.

Working Hypothesis 2: ???

Academic Sources

  • The placebo effect should be thought of as only a positive caring effect. Medical treatments relate to words like care and guidance. It all depends on the patient and what they want to happen or expect to happen to them. But there are other factors that contribute to the overall success of the treatment like the relationship with the medical staff or the beliefs of how strong of an effect the treatment will have on them.
  • Blease CThe principle of parity: the ‘placebo effect’ and physician communication Journal of Medical Ethics 2012;38:199-203. Link: https://bit.ly/2H6rdhw
  • A study was conducted to see if placebos worked without using deception. The results showed more improvements when both the medical researcher and the patient knew what the patient was receiving, which contradicts what a placebo is. They are supposed to be intentionally unknown to see the true effects they have. But, people who took the placebo had greater scores than the ones who had no treatment done to them.
  • Article Source: Placebos without Deception: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Irritable Bowel Syndrome Kaptchuk TJ, Friedlander E, Kelley JM, Sanchez MN, Kokkotou E, et al. (2010) Placebos without Deception: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Irritable Bowel Syndrome. PLOS ONE 5(12): e15591. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0015591
  • by Benika Pinch Link: sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2016/just-sugar-pill-placebo-effect-real/

Topics for Smaller Papers

  • psychological vs physiological effects of placebos
  • placebo effect on animals
  • Counterargument: prescription drugs are more effective than placebos

Current State of Research Paper

Right now honestly, I am overwhelmed with the whole project, but I just changed my hypothesis to something I am more interested about in learning. It may take a lot of time and effort before I get a solid foundation on this essay, but I am eager to research and create a well developed argument. 3000 words seems very immense, but this whole project is a process, so I’m going to tackle it in sections.

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1 Response to White Paper-rowanstudent

  1. davidbdale says:

    Of course you’re overwhelmed if you look at the big picture too long. That’s WHY we break down the process into bite-sized chunks. Hypothesis/Sources/Short Arguments/More Sources/Slow Dawning of the Realization that Research is more than looking for evidence to support what you already believe/Epiphany!/Enthusiasm for the subject/Revelation that you can make a real contribution to “common knowledge” by challenging common knowledge.

    Take it slowly, but not too slowly. When in doubt, read more sources.

    I’m delighted that you found that EXTREMELY counterintuitive source that confirms the totally unexpected result that placebos can work EVEN WHEN PATIENTS KNOW THEY’RE RECEIVING A PLACEBO!

    That should open the possibility that healing, for patients receptive to the idea, is much more psychological than physiological. What work has been done to figure out what OTHER CHARACTERISTICS these patients share? In other words, as a Categorical Argument, can we know before the trial begins, whether study subjects belong to the group: PATIENTS WHO WILL BENEFIT FROM PLACEBO?


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