Antoinette I. M. van Laarhoven

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Patients' expectations are important predictors of the outcome of analgesic treatments, as demonstrated predominantly in research on placebo effects. Three commonly investigated interventions that have been found to induce expectations (verbal suggestion, conditioning, and mental imagery) entail promising, brief, and easy-to-implement adjunctive procedures(More)
BACKGROUND Physicians are frequently confronted with patients reporting severe itch and pain. Particularly in patients suffering from persistent itch and pain, central and peripheral sensitization processes are assumed to be involved in the long-term maintenance and aggravation of the symptoms. The present study explores generalized and symptom-specific(More)
INTRODUCTION Stressful events are thought to contribute to the aetiology, maintenance and exacerbation of rheumatic diseases. Given the growing interest in acute stress responses and disease, this review investigates the impact of real-life experimental psychosocial, cognitive, exercise and sensory stressors on autonomic, neuroendocrine and immune function(More)
Patients frequently report high levels of physical symptoms, such as itch and pain, which do not completely correspond to pathophysiological findings, possibly indication heightened sensitivity to physical symptoms. Sensitivity to itch and pain is thought to be affected by processes such as attentional focus on bodily sensations. We investigated the role of(More)
Pain can be endogenously modulated by heterotopic noxious conditioning stimulation (HNCS) through a mechanism which is known as diffuse noxious inhibitory control (DNIC). Since DNIC can be impaired in patients suffering from chronic pain, a comparable impaired itch inhibition may exist in patients suffering from chronic itch. The aim of the present study(More)
Physical complaints, such as pain, can be effectively reduced by placebo effects through induction of positive expectations, or increased by nocebo effects through induction of negative expectations. In the present study, verbally induced nocebo and placebo effects on itch were experimentally investigated for the first time. In part 1, the role of verbal(More)
BACKGROUND Itch and pain are common symptoms in skin disease. It has been suggested that negative emotions may play a role in itch and pain. To date, however, the role of emotions has only been studied for pain in experimental studies, not yet for itch. OBJECTIVES To investigate the effects of negative and positive emotions on the sensitivity to itch and(More)
Placebo and nocebo effects are known to play a key role in treatment effects in a wide variety of conditions. These effects have frequently been investigated with regard to pain and also in other physical sensations, but have hardly been investigated with regard to itch. In addition, neither in pain nor in any other physical sensation, the single and(More)
Placebo and nocebo effects have been extensively studied in the field of pain and more recently also on itch. In accordance with placebo research on pain, expectancy learning via verbal suggestion or conditioning has shown to induce placebo and nocebo effects on itch, in which the combination of both procedures seems most promising. Moreover, itch can also(More)
Expectancies can shape pain experiences. Attention for the influence of expectancies on pain has increased particularly due to research on placebo effects, of which expectancy is believed to be the core mechanism. In the current review, we provide a brief overview of the literature on the influence of expectancies on pain. We first discuss the central role(More)