AMSSM IN THE NEWS
Hecht, O’Connor Participate in NIH Placebo and Performance Meeting
By: Phil Salko, MD
Suzanne Hecht, MD, assistant professor at the University of Minnesota department of family medicine and director of the sports medicine fellowship, was invited to join a panel at the “Placebo and Performance” conference in Bethesda, Maryland. The conference, held over three days in January 2012, focused on using placebo responses in clinical practice. Joined by past AMSSM President Francis O’Connor, MD, MPH, Dr. Hecht brainstormed with members of the National Institute of Health and the Samueli Institute, in order to develop different studies designed to better evaluate the placebo impact in athletics and the military. The placebo effect has traditionally been a deception in studies to control for different factors. However, new aim is directed at ways the Placebo effect can be utilized in a therapeutic manner with the goal of requiring less medication especially in patients with chronic pain. In speaking with Dr. Hecht, through her work and this conference she has become aware that, “Patients don’t really care if they are deceived at times, as long as they get better” and when treating your patients with certain prescriptions “the delivery or sales pitch” of that particular prescription is almost just as important as the actual medication or therapy itself. Dr. Hecht also sees patients at Fairview Sports and Orthopedic Care in Minneapolis. She holds a CAQ in sports medicine and certification in clinical densitometry. Dr. Hecht also teaches residents in sports medicine workshops and provides training room and sideline care to University of Minnesota athletes as well as USA gymnastics and USA figure skating.