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Narrative Review

Vol. 11 No. 2 (2008)

Challenging Received Wisdom: Antidepressants and the Placebo Effect

  • Irving Kirsch
November 7, 2020


This article explores the reaction when an article challenging received wisdom is published and covered extensively by the media (1). The article in question was a meta-analysis of antidepressant clinical trials indicating that for most patients, difference between drug and placebo was not clinically significant. Reactions ranged from denial that the effects of antidepressants are so small to criticisms of the clinical trials that were analyzed. Each of these reactions is explored and countered.


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