Auricular point acupressure for chronic low back pain: A feasibility study for 1-week treatment

Chao Hsing Yeh*, Lung Chang Chien, Yi Chien Chiang, Li Chun Huang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

40 Scopus citations


Objectives. The objective of this one-group, repeated-measures design was to explore the acceptance of auricular point acupressure (APA) to reduce chronic low back pain (CLBP) and estimate minimum clinically important differences (MCIDs) for pain intensity change. Methods. Subjects received 7-day APA treatment. After appropriate acupoints were identified, vaccaria seeds were carefully taped onto each selected auricular point for 7-day. The Brief Pain Inventory Short Form (BPI) was used to collect outcome data. Results. A total of 74 subjects participated in the study. Ten subjects dropped out and the retention rate was 87. Subjects reported a 46 reduction in BPI worst pain, and over 50 reduction in BPI average pain, overall pain severity and pain interference by the end of study, and 62.5 subjects also reported less pain medication use. The MCIDs for the subscale of BPI ranged from.70 to 1.86 points. The percentage improvement of MCIDs from baseline was between 14.524.9. Discussion. APA appears to be highly acceptable to patients with CLBP. A sham group is needed in order to differentiate the true effects of APA from the possible psychological effects of more frequent visits by the auricular therapist and patients expectation of the APA treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number383257
JournalEvidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


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