Medical Marketing: Is That REAL Pain?

Robert Burton of Salon wrote an interesting piece that discusses both the field of prescription drug marketing and how fMRI brain scans have been used to show that pain is “real.” Fibromyalgia is a condition in which patients seem to experience more pain than non-sufferers. Fibromylgia is thought to be stimulated by mental states like [...]

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Better Branding with Chocolate and Sex

Fantasizing about food and sex can reduce pain. (And you always thought those fantasies were a waste of time…) People in emotional or physical distress often turn to “comfort foods” – new research shows that just thinking about these foods can have a significant effect. “Imagery tactics are the most potent cognitive behavior interventions for [...]

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Marketing and the Placebo Effect

We all know what the placebo effect is – give a group of patients a sugar pill instead of a medication with active ingredients, and some of them will show an improvement in their symptoms. Drug researchers treat the placebo effect as an annoying artifact that must be eliminated by using double-blind studies. Other health [...]

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Pain, Fear, and Vicarious Learning

Why do people react with fear when they see a snake, even though they have never been bitten by a snake or even had much contact with the reptiles? New research shows that the same areas of the brain that react to a personal experience involving pain or fear also react to watching someone else [...]

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The Dread Zone: Anticipating Pain

Neuroscientists have used fMRI to discover that the brain’s anticipation of pain can be as bad as actually experiencing the pain. Marketers should use pain references carefully.

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