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Methodological Issues of using Placebos in Interventions Based on Digital Technology

Farr, William, Male, Ian, Green, Dido, Morris, Christopher, Gage, Heather, Bailey, Sarah, Speller, Sandra, Colville, Val, Jackson, Mandy, Bremner, Stephen and Memon, Anjum (2017) Methodological Issues of using Placebos in Interventions Based on Digital Technology Journal of Mobile Technology in Medicine, 6 (2). pp. 56-63.

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Abstract

Background/Aims: Use of placebo is the ideal for comparison in clinical trials to reduce biases. With digital technology being used more frequently in healthcare interventions, how do we determine the placebo effect where interventions exploit technology? If placebo in medicine is traditionally defined by a lack of pharmacological agents, how might we begin to move towards controlling for effects of digital technology?

Method: This paper explores the traditional placebo effect and discusses its impact in healthcare contexts with digital technology with reference to a particular trial. Different meanings of placebo in the context of evaluating technology suggest new challenges and positive consequences.

Results: Methodological considerations are discussed, which enabled the development of a placebo-controlled evaluation of a digital technology in healthcare and rehabilitation.

Conclusion: Digital placebo was controlled in our trial by employing technology across all groups in the absence of evidence-based practice and shows how to control for unknown and hidden effects of technology.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > School of Economics
Authors :
NameEmailORCID
Farr, WilliamUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Male, IanUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Green, DidoUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Morris, ChristopherUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Gage, HeatherH.Gage@surrey.ac.ukUNSPECIFIED
Bailey, Sarahs.g.bailey@surrey.ac.ukUNSPECIFIED
Speller, SandraUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Colville, ValUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Jackson, MandyUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Bremner, StephenUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Memon, AnjumUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date : January 2017
Identification Number : 10.7309/jmtm.6.2.7
Copyright Disclaimer : © journalMTM.com | Journal of Mobile Technology in Medicine Inc. This article is licensed under the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs Unported license(CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0)
Depositing User : Clive Harris
Date Deposited : 29 Sep 2017 07:27
Last Modified : 29 Sep 2017 07:27
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/842426

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