Case Study Chemotherapy Patient

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The chemotherapy patient would already start to feel sick simply upon entering the treatment office because the patient has been classically conditioned to associate the treatment office and their nausea. In classical conditioning an innate response to a potent stimulus comes to be drawn out in response to a stimulus that was neutral before the pairing. For example, if you were to ring a bell every time you bring food to a dog. eventually the dog would just get excited when you ring the bell, even without the food. The bell was neutral, the response was getting excited, and the potent stimulus was the food. So in the case of the chemo patient, the treatment room was the neutral stimulus, their response was getting sick and nauseated, their potent stimulus the treatment itself. Due to the response and neutral stimulus being paired so much due to their treatment, the patient has been classically…show more content…
For example, if the patient were to eat some potato chips every time they were in the treatment office, eventually they would get sick (due to treatment) and sooner or later the patient would be unable to stomach potato chips because they would have conditioned themselves to think that the chips are causing them to be nauseated. A taste aversion develops when someone eats some food that makes them sick afterwards. Now in the case of the chemo patient, it is not the food itself that is making them sick; it is the treatment. Nonetheless, the body will treat it the same way. Taste aversions seem to be an example of classical conditioning because a neutral stimulus is paired with a response. However, this is not exactly the case. With taste aversions, a taste stimulus is paired with internal stimuli. This is what can happen with the chemo patient. Their associating the potato chips (the taste stimulus) with their nausea (the internal

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