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InvisibleDiploidM
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Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not
    #4313169 - 06/19/05 07:32 AM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Fabrizio Benedetti of the University of Turin in Italy recently performed an interesting experiment.

For several days, he induced pain in volunteers and controlled it with morphine. Toward the end of the experiment, he substituted saline for the morphine without telling the subjects. Not surprisingly, the saline worked almost as well as the morphine. This is the Placebo Effect.

Now the weird part:

Benedetti next added naloxone, a drug that blocks the effects of morphine, to the saline. Guess what happened then? The pain came back!

It is not understood how this can be, but it is becoming apparent that the placebo effect is somehow at least partially biochemical and not entirely psychological.

Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Edited by Diploid (06/19/05 08:06 AM)


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313194 - 06/19/05 08:08 AM (11 years, 8 months ago)

I see it like this:

the body has all the themicals that it needs inside, and can be tricked by the mind into releasing chemicals. This is the placebo part.
But a chemical that blocks morphine can block the internal chemicals manufactured by the placebo effect


--------------------
I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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OfflineTwirling
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: OldWoodSpecter]
    #4313349 - 06/19/05 11:13 AM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Morphine has been found to be endogenous, so you may have some accuracy there.


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Twirling]
    #4313447 - 06/19/05 12:11 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Well, since placebo effect actually makes specific changes in experiences (such as lack of pain etc.) it has to have some chemical component that makes it work. Every experience in the brain has a chemical component. Pain, pleasure, emotions, even thoughts (since signals travel between neurons by chemical means) have chemical components in order to work. And since placebo DOES produce experiences, it means it produces chemical motion in the brain.

So for pain to stop, there has to be a chemical change in the brain, produced by placebo or otherwise, which means placebo is a kind of internal self-controled system of chemical manipulation


--------------------
I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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OfflineGomp
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313457 - 06/19/05 12:16 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

This is the Placebo Effect.

:smile:


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Disclaimer!?


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: OldWoodSpecter]
    #4313466 - 06/19/05 12:21 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

And since placebo DOES produce experiences, it means it produces chemical motion in the brain.

But if you tell the subject it's saline, the placebo effect doesn't occur. This is why the experiment is interesting.


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313519 - 06/19/05 12:54 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

the placebo effect is somehow at least partially biochemical and not entirely psychological



what's the difference?


--------------------
"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4313521 - 06/19/05 12:57 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

yea, in the light of modern science, there is no difference between chemical and psychological, because phychology is a electro-chemical phenomena. electriciy is only the carrier of the signal, but it is chemistry that dictates those signals (in the sinapse). So you could say that everything psychological is chemical. And feeling good because of a positive thought is no different than feeling good because of an injection of some chemistry. Just two different methods of changing the internal chemistry


--------------------
I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4313523 - 06/19/05 12:58 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Try having a tooth extracted without anesthetics and you'll see the difference.  :syringe:


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Post Extras: Print Post  Remind Me! Notify Moderator
OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313531 - 06/19/05 01:04 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

What you have said here speaks only about the effectivity of both methods, but can you think of any other way to change anything in a chemical brain exept by changing the balance of chemicals in it?
Pain is a certain mixture of chemistry, and it does not go away by magic, it can only go away with changing that mixture to something else.

It seems to me that you are somehow separating the experience from the chemistry itself. You are saying that the brain experiences chemistry as something separate from itself. But it is the chemistry itself that is the experience, so the only way to change the experience is to change the chemistry, with the power of the mind to change itself or with external chemistry.

Cases of complete blockade of pain have been recodred in history of psychology, it is intentional placebo effect (don't know if it can still be called placebo then) in its strongest version.


--------------------
I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: OldWoodSpecter]
    #4313548 - 06/19/05 01:15 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

The main thrust of this thread is that the Placebo Effect used to be considered a psychological phenomenon because if the patient is aware that he's getting a placebo, the effect does not manifest.

Now we find that the PE can be eliminated when an antidote to the drug the patient thinks he's getting is given instead.

Somehow, the patient is chemically manifesting the effects of morphine without morphine. The brain produces trace amounts of morphine, but not enough to account for the analgesia exhibited in the experiment.

This is an interesting result. What it might mean is even more interesting.

If the PE is not psychological (which it can't be or the naloxone would not work), then where does the placebo analgesia come from?


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Edited by Diploid (06/19/05 01:23 PM)


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313580 - 06/19/05 01:38 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

psychological vs biochemcial-
=two different manifestations of biochemical processes
or two different manifestations of psychological processes
it's the same thing, different manifestations.

i agree that what's interesting is the difference between the two processes. calling the processes psychological vs biochemical is misleading in my mind, because it implies that one process isn't psychological, and one process isn't biochemical.


--------------------
"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: Diploid]
    #4313599 - 06/19/05 01:47 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Diploid said:
The main thrust of this thread is that the Placebo Effect used to be considered a psychological phenomenon because if the patient is aware that he's getting a placebo, the effect does not manifest.

Now we find that the PE can be eliminated when an antidote to the drug the patient thinks he's getting is given instead.

Somehow, the patient is chemically manifesting the effects of morphine without morphine. The brain produces trace amounts of morphine, but not enough to account for the analgesia exhibited in the experiment.

This is an interesting result. What it might mean is even more interesting.

If the PE is not psychological (which it can't be or the naloxone would not work), then where does the placebo analgesia come from?




yes, but consider the oposite scenario..

what if, like you say the effect was psychological in the first place?
How do you imagine it to work without chemistry involved?

I still don't see the difference between chemical and psychological.
Tell me how you picture in your head placebo effect without chemistry?


--------------------
I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Registered: 01/09/03
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Re: Placebo Effect, Or Maybe Not [Re: OldWoodSpecter]
    #4314129 - 06/19/05 05:31 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

How do you imagine it to work without chemistry involved?

Oh, it's fairly clear that chemistry must be involved as everything that happens in the brain is chemistry at the bottom of it all. But with PE, it must be a different chemistry than it is with morphine.

Or perhaps it's something else. I think there's more to morphine than simply fitting a kappa-opioid receptor. This experiments suggests there's a secondary, currently unknown, effect that ultimately causes the analgesia, and it's this post-receptor effect that ultimately manifests analgesia, both with morphine and with a placebo.

If this is so, understanding the mechanism involved could lead to all sorts of discoveries about the nature of pain and maybe even consciousness.


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Post Extras: Print Post  Remind Me! Notify Moderator
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