Nocebogenic harms are negative psychological effects associated with a stimulus (for example, a vaccine or medical treatment, sexual assault, or unlawful consensual sex) which derive from the expectation that said stimulus causes harm - be that retrospective or otherwise. These reactions might be described as a "nocebo effect" if explicitly related to medicine - essentially the inverse of a placebo effect.
Authors such as Bruce Rind have identified nocebogenesis as a possible source of harm in Child Sexual Abuse survivors. In The Trauma Myth, Susan Clancy controversially argued that adults may reconceptualize early experiences as traumatic. Thus, it can be argued that addressing age-related sex stigma is a public-health concern. Our anthology on Secondary Harm discusses nocebogenic harms, which are themselves only one form of secondary harm.
Some people maintain that belief kills (e.g., voodoo death: Cannon in 1942 describes a number of instances from a variety of different cultures) and belief heals (e.g., faith healing). A self-willed death (due to voodoo hex, evil eye, pointing the bone procedure, etc.) is an extreme form of a culture-specific syndrome or mass psychogenic illness that produces a particular form of psychosomatic or psychophysiological disorder which results in a psychogenic death. Rubel in 1964 spoke of "culture bound" syndromes, which were those "from which members of a particular group claim to suffer and for which their culture provides an etiology, diagnosis, preventive measures, and regimens of healing".
Wikipedia covers a host of related topics:
- Iatrogenesis - The causation of a disease, a harmful complication, or other ill effect by any medical activity.
- Subject-expectancy effect
- Somatic symptom disorder