There's an interesting programe coming up on BBC Radio 4 this week at 9pm on Tuesday: In the absence of any generally effective treatment for ME/CFS, maybe this is an interesting avenue to explore. In this article about his study on Bloomberg's, he says he thinks an overt placebo might also work for fibromyalgia (he lists several conditions, I think on the basis of those he thinks already demonstrate large placebo effects in conventional studies where the placebos are covert). Just to be clear, I don't see any suggestion in this that the overt placebo tackles symptoms that are just "all in the mind" and that certainly wouldn't be my view. I'd like to have seen the study going deeper in terms of measuring what is actually going on, though - are the patients with the overt placebo & active treatment changing their behaviour in some way? What goes on in the brain (i.e. which areas are activated) when patients take the overt placebo and the active drug? Interesting that no-one has apparently tested an overt placebo against no treatment before now! I think that placebo research generally is very interesting and under-researched.