IMAT 2013 Q7 [Placebo]

A placebo is:

A. a type of pain killer.
B. a form of local anaesthetic.
C. a form of mild stimulant.
D. an inactive drug or treatment.
E. a sedative.

A placebo is commonly referred to as a “dummy” treatment. This is because it is not an active type of drug, but rather a mental effect used as medical treatment, most commonly in clinical trials.

The idea is that the belief in a so called “treatment” may be enough to change the course of a person’s physical illness. This “treatment” would be the inactive drug, or placebo.

It is important to note that a “placebo” and the “placebo effect” are different things. The term placebo refers to the inactive substance itself, while the term placebo effect refers to any effects of taking a medicine that cannot be attributed to the treatment itself.

A common types of “placebo medication” include sugar pills, injections (saline solution), or consumable liquids .

Our answer will therefore be D.