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Can a placebo be ethical?

*Francois Chast is chairman of the Vigilance and Health Risks Committee at Necker-Infant Malades Hospital. He is also the Honorary President of the National Academy of Pharmacy.


A placebo, by definition, does not contain any medicinal substance. However, its effect was described as “powerful” by the first experts who attempted to quantify it. And in fact. on average, 35% of patients respond to placebo. But the result is often a lie, the patient not knowing the true status of what was given to him. Is it then acceptable to supply such a product when, in fact, it is based on deception?

One of the most consistent areas of placebo use is pharmaceutical research; many products are tested “against placebo,” meaning that one group of patients is given the desired drug test, while another is given a product that is completely similar but lacks it. from the active ingredient…

Source: Le Figaro

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