Truly, the placebo effect is impressive at times but it is questionable ethically to prescribe treatment that you believe only works via placebo. I could get into a great deal of hot water with my college registrar by engaging in placebo treatments.^^ Therapies that patients "demand" can have an especially strong placebo effect, as the patient has a high expectation of benefit, so I tend not to resent prescribing them. Naturally, one shouldn't succumb to this pressure if there's a potential significant negative effect of the therapy.
I agree. I've definitely done that for legitimate treatments when there is a choice.64
No, I wasn't referring to placebos but rather the placebo effect of legitimate therapies. For example, I may sometimes think drug A would be optimal for patient, but drug B, which is less optimal, did wonders for somebody the patient knows so he's really eager to try that one instead. I think true placebos are pretty universally considered unethical in clinical practice.