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48 Percent of Doctors Admit to Prescribing Placebos Just to Shut You Up

January 29, 2008 | 36,252 views

placebo effect, prescription, doctorThe next time your doctor prescribes you a medication, you have about a 50-50 chance that it’s a placebo, according to a new study by University of Chicago researchers.

Their survey of 466 faculty physicians at Chicago-area medical schools found that 45 percent said they had prescribed placebos in regular clinical practice, with just over half having prescribed them in the previous year.

The most common reasons why doctors prescribed placebos were to:
  • Calm a patient down
  • Respond to demands for medication the doctor thought were unnecessary
  • Do something after all other treatment options had failed
Almost all of the doctors -- 96 percent -- believed that the placebos could have a real therapeutic effect.

A separate study by the University of Michigan, for instance, found that patients given placebos, but told they were receiving painkillers, had increased production of endorphins -- your brain’s natural pain relievers.

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Receiving a placebo medication can be a very good thing, provided that the placebo is truly harmless.

But as one newspaper pointed out, one of the most common “placebo” treatments given was antibiotics for viral infections, which do not respond to antibiotics. This is not really a placebo effect at all, but rather is prescribing completely unnecessary drugs that can cause further harm to you and increase antibiotic-resistance in the community.

Assuming a true placebo -- a completely inert, harmless pill or treatment -- is used, then you can get remarkable results. The profound impact of the placebo effect has been scientifically proven beyond a doubt.

The best example of this was published in The New England Journal of Medicine in 2002. It revealed that arthroscopic surgery for knee pain worked no better than a placebo surgery.

This was a double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter trial performed at some of the top U.S. hospitals -- and was about as scientifically accurate as they come. Other studies, too, have proven that the placebo effect is often just as good as “real” treatments such as:
These studies show that the surgery or medication are not responsible for the improvements, rather, it is the ability of your brain to produce healing that offered the relief. Healing lies in the power of your mind -- and this is what is at the heart of the placebo effect.

You may not yet realize it, but you have an enormous untapped potential to manifest healing in your body -- if you sincerely believe it. If you focus your intention on something, you can manifest nearly any result you desire.

The New Biology is one of the newest and most exciting schools of thought out there that explains this. Listen to my recent interview with Bruce Lipton, PhD., a forerunner in this field, and you’ll begin to understand that your mind controls your tendency to develop or resist disease.

But there is one catch.

To manifest healing in your body, you must be free of emotional blocks standing in your way.

For instance, if you have pain but you believe that somehow you deserve it, that you’re to blame for it, or that you will never be rid of it, then you will tend to manifest those negative tendencies in your body.

So what should you do?

Get to the root of your emotional conflicts and release them. I suggest using one of the most efficient and effective tools to achieve this and that would be energy psychology. My favorite energy psychology tool is EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique). And remember, if you have an especially traumatic, complex or deep-seated emotional challenge to overcome you can always find an EFT therapist to guide you.

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