Vistas Online 2011

VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.


The Placebo Effect

Jonathan Lent


The term placebo effect refers to the changes in an individual caused by placebo manipulation (Koshi & Short, 2007). In clinical trials, substances or procedures designed to serve as control conditions may actually produce an effect on subjective or biomarker outcomes. Stewart-Williams and Podd (2004) provide a definition for placebo that states “A placebo is a substance or procedure that has no inherent power to produce an effect that is sought or expected” (pp. 326). They also define the placebo effect as “a genuine psychological or physiological effect, in a human or another animal, which is attributable to receiving a substance or undergoing a procedure, but is not due to the inherent powers of that substance or procedure” (pp. 326). These indirect effects of inactive procedures are considered under the umbrella term placebo effects (Kaptchuk, 1998; Oken, 2008).

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