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Placebo and nocebo effects in itch and pain.
Handb Exp Pharmacol 2014; 225:205-14HE

Abstract

Physical complaints, such as pain, can be effectively altered by placebo and nocebo effects due to induction of positive or negative expectations. While verbal suggestion and conditioning are recognized as playing a key role in placebo and nocebo effects on pain, these mechanisms have barely been investigated with regard to other somatosensory sensations, such as itch. Results on contagious itch in both animals and humans suggest that itch sensations might be even more susceptible for placebo and nocebo effects than pain. Research on placebo and nocebo effects on pain and itch can further deliver insight into the common and specific mechanisms underlying these effects in different physical complaints. Work of our research group on verbal suggestions inducing nocebo effects demonstrated an important role of verbal suggestions with regard to itch, with stronger nocebo effects on itch than a comparable procedure for pain. Recent work also demonstrated that placebo and nocebo effects on itch sensations were most effectively induced by procedures that consist of both conditioning and verbal suggestion principles. This work adds to previous prospective studies showing that expectation mechanisms, such as preservative worrying about negative consequences, are relatively consistent predictors of future disease outcomes, including itch, in chronic somatic conditions. Future studies should focus on the specific psychoneurobiological mechanisms of placebo and nocebo effects in various physical sensations, to get insight into the common and specific effects and to contribute to the long-term and clinically relevant use of placebo effects in clinical practice.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Health, Medical and Neuropsychology Unit, Institute of Psychology, Leiden University, 9555, 2300, Leiden, The Netherlands, a.evers@fsw.leidenuniv.nl.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Review

Language

eng

PubMed ID

25304534

Citation

Evers, Andrea W M., et al. "Placebo and Nocebo Effects in Itch and Pain." Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology, vol. 225, 2014, pp. 205-14.
Evers AW, Bartels DJ, van Laarhoven AI. Placebo and nocebo effects in itch and pain. Handb Exp Pharmacol. 2014;225:205-14.
Evers, A. W., Bartels, D. J., & van Laarhoven, A. I. (2014). Placebo and nocebo effects in itch and pain. Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology, 225, pp. 205-14. doi:10.1007/978-3-662-44519-8_12.
Evers AW, Bartels DJ, van Laarhoven AI. Placebo and Nocebo Effects in Itch and Pain. Handb Exp Pharmacol. 2014;225:205-14. PubMed PMID: 25304534.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Placebo and nocebo effects in itch and pain. AU - Evers,Andrea W M, AU - Bartels,Danielle J P, AU - van Laarhoven,Antoinette I M, PY - 2014/10/12/entrez PY - 2014/10/12/pubmed PY - 2015/2/6/medline SP - 205 EP - 14 JF - Handbook of experimental pharmacology JO - Handb Exp Pharmacol VL - 225 N2 - Physical complaints, such as pain, can be effectively altered by placebo and nocebo effects due to induction of positive or negative expectations. While verbal suggestion and conditioning are recognized as playing a key role in placebo and nocebo effects on pain, these mechanisms have barely been investigated with regard to other somatosensory sensations, such as itch. Results on contagious itch in both animals and humans suggest that itch sensations might be even more susceptible for placebo and nocebo effects than pain. Research on placebo and nocebo effects on pain and itch can further deliver insight into the common and specific mechanisms underlying these effects in different physical complaints. Work of our research group on verbal suggestions inducing nocebo effects demonstrated an important role of verbal suggestions with regard to itch, with stronger nocebo effects on itch than a comparable procedure for pain. Recent work also demonstrated that placebo and nocebo effects on itch sensations were most effectively induced by procedures that consist of both conditioning and verbal suggestion principles. This work adds to previous prospective studies showing that expectation mechanisms, such as preservative worrying about negative consequences, are relatively consistent predictors of future disease outcomes, including itch, in chronic somatic conditions. Future studies should focus on the specific psychoneurobiological mechanisms of placebo and nocebo effects in various physical sensations, to get insight into the common and specific effects and to contribute to the long-term and clinically relevant use of placebo effects in clinical practice. SN - 0171-2004 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/25304534/Placebo_and_nocebo_effects_in_itch_and_pain_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-44519-8_12 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -