Sweet spot of the pain killing placebo effect identified in the brain

Scientists have identified for the first time the region in the brain responsible for the "placebo effect" in pain relief, when a fake treatment actually results in substantial reduction of pain, according to an fMRI study from Northwestern Medicine and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (Read more). Pinpointing the sweet spot of the pain killing placebo effect could result in the design of more personalized medicine for people with chronic pain. It also has potential for individualized pain therapy by enabling targeted pain medication based on an individual’s brain responds to a drug. Another objective indicator of the placebo effect was recently demonstrated in an EEG study which found that placebo analgesia induces alpha oscillation changes, suggesting that alpha oscillations in frontal-central regions could serve as a cortical oscillatory basis of the placebo effect on tonic muscle pain (Read more).


Posted on 31 jan 2017

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