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What is the 'nocebo effect'?

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We have all heard of the 'placebo effect ', which refers to a psychological mechanism by which we are able to feel relief or improvement of a disorder, symptom, or pain, when we take a placebo, a substance ineffective and harmless, which actually does not have any property that allows to solve the problem that afflicts us, believing that it is a drug. It is the fact of believing that we will experience an improvement which causes a beneficial effect.
What could it be, then, the 'nocebo effect'? His name already gives us a clue, and is it is, precisely, the experience against which provides the 'placebo effect'; i.e. the 'nocebo effect' is to suffer a series of adverse events as a result of the negative expectations we have about a medicine, remedy, therapy, and even a placebo, and that make us believe that it will not work or will be detrimental to our health.
Fear of a disease, or treatment, may aggravate the symptoms of Pathology, both side effects of therapy
The expectations of patients, what they expect to happen, because they play a key role in the emergence of the 'placebo effect' or the 'nocebo effect'. Thus, a study by a team of neurologists at the University of Michigan, in the United States, revealed that when a person believes that medicine that takes will to be effective, your brain activates a region associated with the ability to experience a benefit or reward and then secretes dopamine, a substance that has an analgesic effect.
On the other side, the German neurologist Magnus Heier, scholar of the influence that has the unconscious man and author of a book on the 'nocebo effect', explains that fear of a disease or treatments that we must follow to cure us, they may aggravate the symptoms of Pathology, both side effects of therapies. And it is that fear is a source of stress and stress, in turn, can weaken the immune system, making us more vulnerable to viruses and bacteria, and more sensitive to pain.

The 'nocebo effect' and Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia, a disease that is characterized by chronic, widespread pain, which also tends to be accompanied by an intense fatigue, sleep disorders, headaches, nausea or depression, among other symptoms, is one of the conditions in which it has been established the 'nocebo effect'.
According to specialists, the fibromyalgia patients suffer many more adverse to various drugs effects than other patients and, what is more significant when they are treated with placebo - a substance infective and innocuous - the number of withdrawals due to adverse reactions is also twice in his case.
If know the possible negative effects of a drug or treatment can induce an adverse reaction due to the influence of the mind over the rest of the body, it could pose an ethical problem for professionals in medicine, because if that knowledge about potential manifestations of a disease, or side effects that could have a treatmentthey triggered the 'nocebo effect', what is convenient then to inform patients?
Article contributed for educational purposes
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