It seems the days of placebos being given by doctors are not behind us according to a study just published by the Universities of Oxford and Southampton. They did a survey of 800 doctors picked at random and discovered the vast majority had used placebos at least once.
It seems it is a grey area as the GMC has no position on it. In the survey around two thirds of doctors had no problem with the use of placebos and one third thought it unethical.
One of the commoner placebos used are antibiotics for a viral sore throat. Antibiotics have no effect on viruses but patients think they do and feel better.
The fact that placebos work shows how important the brain is in our health. When we think we are being treated and will improve, we do. Brain chemistry alters and releases various natural chemical including pain killers.