Sugar, sugar

You could call this thinking outside the bottle:

Too often, good research about new medicines — research that shows unusually clear-cut results — goes unpublished, and thus unseen. The reason? Journal editors distrust any study in which the placebo effect is “too small.” The problem has a simple solution: re-run the experiment, but instead of giving standard placebos to the control group, instead give them double-strength placebos (DSPs).

Of course, those placebos will have to be evaluated to verify the “double-strength” claim, which means that another control group will have to be obtained, but nobody said clinical trials were supposed to be easy.

(Previous placebo coverage here.)

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1 comment

  1. Joseph Hertzlinger »

    12 December 2010 · 12:04 am

    I’m reminded of “extra-strength” homeopathic medicines.

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