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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2017, Article ID 3080547, 16 pages
Review Article

The Effect of Auricular Acupoint Stimulation in Overweight and Obese Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

1Department of Family Medicine, Hsinchu MacKay Memorial Hospital, No. 690, Section 2, Guangfu Road, East District, Hsinchu City, Taiwan
2Department of Family Medicine, Taipei MacKay Memorial Hospital, No. 92, Section 2, Zhongshan North Road, Taipei City, Taiwan
3Department of Medical Library, MacKay Memorial Hospital, Tamsui Branch, No. 45, Minsheng Road, Tamsui District, New Taipei City, Taiwan
4School of Medicine, Griffith University, Gold Coast Campus, Parklands Dr., Southport, QLD 4215, Australia
5Department of Medical Research, MacKay Memorial Hospital, No. 92, Section 2, Zhongshan North Road, Taipei City, Taiwan

Correspondence should be addressed to Lee-Ching Hwang; wt.gro.hmm@clh

Received 12 June 2017; Revised 11 August 2017; Accepted 22 August 2017; Published 5 December 2017

Academic Editor: Kieran Cooley

Copyright © 2017 Tzu-Lin Yeh 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.


Objective. To investigate the effect of auricular acupoint stimulation on overweight and obese adults. Methods. We searched databases including PubMed, EMBASE, Allied and Complementary Medicine Database, National Knowledge Infrastructure, and the PerioPath Index to Taiwan Periodical Literature. The modified Jadad scale was used to assess study quality. We investigated the effect of auricular acupoint stimulation on anthropometric measurements. Results. Eighteen randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were included in our systematic review. Thirteen RCTs were pooled in a meta-analysis that revealed a significant reduction in body weight (BW) with a mean difference (MD) of 1.21 kg and a 95% confidence interval (CI) from 1.94 to 0.47 with a heterogeneity of = 88%. Significant decreases in body mass index (BMI; MD: 0.57 kg/m2; 95% CI 0.82 to 0.33; = 78%), body fat (BF; MD: 0.83%; 95% CI 1.43 to 0.24; = 0%), and waist circumference (WC; MD: 1.75 cm; 95% CI 2.95 to 0.55; = 87%) were also revealed. Conclusions. This meta-analysis shows that auricular acupoint stimulation improves physical anthropometric parameters including BW, BMI, BF, and WC in overweight and obese adults. These methods are less effective on hip circumference and waist-to-hip ratio.