Just look at cancer patients that were given placebos and told their hair would fall out as a side effect. Half the people on that trial 'believed' they were on the real drug and experienced hair loss.
Do you have a citation for or a link to this study? Granted, references to this supposed study are rampant on websites promoting 'natural' cures, yet I can't find any citation. In addition, the results seem to vary. You say a full "half" of the people lost hair; most say that only 20% lost hair. Which is it? If it was a cancer study, as some indicate, were these people on other drugs that might have contributed to hair loss? Some sites say it was done in the 50s, so they could have been on other cancer treatments that can lead to hairloss, but perhaps that knowledge wasn't available at the time. Even then, if this study is correct, please see the next paragraph.
There was no reason for this other than belief. Now, what if they were to believe they could be healed? Who knows? Some people may benefit from that.
Nonetheless, the placebo effect is acknowledged and embraced by science. Yet, each of these 'natural' website attempts to make it appear as if the medical community is totally unaware and dismissive of the effect. Why do you think they have a placebo arm attached to these studies? It is to mathmatically account for the effect!
Several sites went so far as to attack researches who feel it ethically wrong to have a placebo arm in some studies. The site intimates that these doctors are nefariously trying to hide something concering the wonderful placebo healing effect. I am quite aware of this debate, and it centers on Phase II and Phase III studies. To qualify for a Phase II or Phase III study, the drug must have demonstrated some efficacy. If it is a Phase II or as Phase III cancer study, then the researchers are dealing with a drug that has shown some efficacy against the specific cancer with which the volunteers are stricken. So now, the ethical question becomes as follows: Is it ethical even to have a placebo arm because it will mean that some volunteers with this cancer will receive absolutely NO treatment during this study? These sites insinuate that the doctors who question the ethics of this practice (demanded by the FDA) are REALLY just trying to stop research into the placebo effect.
I would never dismiss medical intervention...but I see no harm in trying other methods as well.
I agree, and most cancer doctors and cancer treatment centers now treat the 'whole person" with complementary approaches. But this louse that Fernando has posted is one of the quacks who is trying to boost his sales by promoting the 'conspiracy theory' that medical science is hiding something. He is trying to create the same distrust of the general medical community that the WTBTS tries to create in order to bolster its dangerous medical claims about blood.