[pluh-see-boh for 1; plah-chey-boh for 2] /pləˈsi boʊ for 1; plɑˈtʃeɪ boʊ for 2/

noun, plural placebos, placeboes.
Medicine/Medical, Pharmacology.

Roman Catholic Church. the vespers of the office for the dead: so called from the initial word of the first antiphon, taken from Psalm 114:9 of the Vulgate.
noun (pl) -bos, -boes
(med) an inactive substance or other sham form of therapy administered to a patient usually to compare its effects with those of a real drug or treatment, but sometimes for the psychological benefit to the patient through his believing he is receiving treatment See also control group, placebo effect
something said or done to please or humour another
(RC Church) a traditional name for the vespers of the office for the dead

early 13c., name given to the rite of Vespers of the Office of the Dead, so called from the opening of the first antiphon, “I will please the Lord in the land of the living” (Psalm cxiv:9), from Latin placebo “I shall please,” future indicative of placere “to please” (see please). Medical sense is first recorded 1785, “a medicine given more to please than to benefit the patient.” Placebo effect attested from 1950.

placebo pla·ce·bo (plə-sē’bō)
n. pl. pla·ce·bos or pla·ce·boes

A substance containing no medication and prescribed to reinforce a patient’s expectation of getting well or used as a control in a clinical research trial to determine the effectiveness of a potential new drug.
placebo [(pluh-see-boh)]

A substance containing no active drug, administered to a patient participating in a medical experiment as a control.

Note: Those receiving a placebo often get better, a phenomenon known as the placebo effect.


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