Price and our sense of value add another dimension to the placebo question
The Placebo Effect: Our sense of pricing contributes to our perception of a medicine's effectiveness. iStockphoto
I have a friend who once posted a perfectly good 23-inch Sony television on craigslist for free. Over the course of two days, four people committed to pick it up, only to cancel at the last minute. On the third day, he re-listed it for $50 and it was gone within the hour. Same television, higher price. What were people thinking? When faced with the same product at different prices, the less expensive is deemed to be inferior. The same thing happens with prescription drugs, and as MIT researchers found, it even works with pills that do nothing at all.