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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 981563, 11 pages
Research Article

Association of Auricular Reflective Points and Status of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Matched Case-Control Study

1School of Nursing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Hong Kong
2School of Nursing, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA
3Centre for Diabetes Education & Management, Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital, Hong Kong
4Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital, Hong Kong
5Evangelical Lutheran Church Social Service-Hong Kong (ELCHK), Shatin Multi-Service Center for the Elderly, Lek Yuen Estate, Shatin, Hong Kong
6Baptist Hospital, Hong Kong
7Department of Medicine & Geriatrics, Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital, Hong Kong

Received 16 January 2015; Revised 16 April 2015; Accepted 1 May 2015

Academic Editor: Evelin Tiralongo

Copyright © 2015 Lorna Kwai-Ping Suen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The reflexive property of the ear can cause various physical attributes to appear on the auricle in the presence of bodily disorders. The association of auricular signals (presence or absence of discoloration, marks after pressing, tenderness, and electrical resistance) and diabetes mellitus (DM) should be further investigated because auricular diagnosis is an objective, painless, and noninvasive method that provides rapid access to information. A matched case-control study on 282 subjects was conducted. Cases () were defined as those diagnosed with type 2 DM (T2DM). Every subject in the case group was matched with the control by age and gender. Ear diagnosis was conducted in three aspects: inspection, electrical detection, and tenderness testing. Results suggest that the tenderness and electrical conductivity of some auricular points, including “pancreas and gallbladder,” “endocrine,” “kidney,” “lower tragus,” “heart,” and “eyes,” were associated with T2DM status in Chinese population. In the subgroup analyses, certain auricular signals were also associated with glycemic control, disease duration, and related complications. Auricular diagnosis could be considered as a screening method for vulnerable populations with T2DM risk. Thus, appropriate interventions can be implemented to prevent or delay the progression of T2DM.