Placebo - The Pill with No Medicine

Placebo is medicine and a well known effect in the medical world known for the fake treatment, but that does not mean that it can't treat any person. Some diseases are not physical, instead psychological, where a person believes that he/she is suffering from some disease while he/she is not. In such a case doctors use Placebo, which is a pill with no medicine in it. It may be a sugar tablet or a capsule with glucose filled in it. In such a case doctor don't tell the patient that it is a Placebo, instead they admit that it is a very good medicine and it will definitely cure the patient. Very less people know about placebo, however it is a tested and experimented technique to treat some diseases.

How does Placebo treats a person ?

Most of the people find it difficult to understand that how can an empty pill with no medicine in it can treat a person. These placebo not only works on psychological diseases but some actual diseases as well. The logic behind the treatment with a placebo lies in the human brain. In past few centuries our brain was made to believe so much in medicine that we forgot the power of our will. Our self confidence can empower our body so much that it can itself treat some minor problems in body. But instead of relying on the body and brain we believe on medicine. Due to this fact, medical community decided to use the power of patients brain to treat him/her. They give a placebo and make the patient believe that it is a good medicine. In most of the cases the problem is solved as the brain get the confidence that now the disease will be gone due to that medicine. That belief makes the body work in a better way and the patient is automatically cured.

Facts about Placebo


  • Placebo is a Latin word which means "I will please".
  • Placebo effect has been measured in thousands of medical experiments.
  • When a new drug is tested for human trial, some researchers give placebo to 50% of the subjects and measure if the success rate of actual drug is more or not. In some trials the success rate of placebo was found better.
  • In a drug trial of a cough medicine, the result concluded that 85% of subjects were successfully treated with placebo, while just 15% was the success rate of actual medicine.
  • Drug companies are made to show that their drug works better than a placebo.
  • The Color and size of a placebo also have effect of their success rate.
  • A Capsule creates a better placebo effect than a tablet. An injection creates better effect than a capsule. And two tablets work better than one. However all of them have same ingredient (mostly sugar) but still the placebo effect varies by these factors.
  • Placebos are used by doctors for Parkinson's disease, depression, anxiety, fatigue.
  • The exact mechanism behind placebo effect is unknown, but some people believe that the mechanism is self-healing property of human body and the evolutionary biology.
  • Placebo analgesia is treating pain with help of a placebo.

If you believe that a medicine will cure you then even a placebo can work, but if you believe that no medicine can cure you then even a real one won't work.
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