14 Apr 2024

Boris Heifets: Hope as a powerful placebo

From Sunday Morning, 11:06 am on 14 April 2024

Ketamine – an anaesthetic drug primarily developed as a horse tranquiliser – is also known to be a powerful psychedelic.  

In recent years has enjoyed the limelight for its use in treating depression. Study after study – including here in New Zealand – has shown the drug to give profound and fast relief to people suffering from severe depression.  

New research from Stanford University, however, suggests that placebo is more powerful than we realise.  

Stanford University’s Dr Boris Heifets says, “Placebo is probably the single most effective, consistent intervention in medicine, full stop”.   

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Photo: Supplied