Expatriate health insurance customers who are receiving treatment might be prompted to approach their treatment with a positive attitude after learning of the results of a recent study.
Conducted by a team from the University of Oxford, the research looked at the brain's pain networks responses to treatment.
The brain was monitored under different conditions, some of the time patients expected treatment to work and at others they had a negative outlook on the treatment.
Results showed that the pain killers being administered had a stronger effect when the individual expected them to work.
Professor Irene Tracey at the Centre for Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Brain, commented: "Doctor's shouldn't underestimate the significant influence that patients' negative expectations can have on outcome."
The team suggested that doctors treating people with chronic pain issues might want to take the results into account.